Why You Should Host Your Website and Email with Different Providers
Many commercial shared web hosting packages are bundled with email, so why would you even go to the extra bother and expense of setting up your email with a different provider? And why don’t we include free email with our WordPress hosting at Wetopi?
Table of Contents
- Good service providers tend to specialize
- The Benefits of Hosting Your Website and Email on Separate Servers
- Our Recommended Email Services
- What About Transactional or Bulk Mail Services?
- Summing Up
Good service providers tend to specialize
Well, there are several reasons which we’ll go into shortly, but if you want the best hosting for your WordPress website, why not for your email too?
After all, for the vast majority of individuals and businesses, email is not an optional extra – it’s something you rely on daily to communicate with others and to keep your business running.
Everyone needs a reliable email service. And it’s something that we tend to take for granted until something goes wrong.
Good service providers tend to specialize in one thing and do it really well. For example, at Wetopi we offer fully managed WordPress hosting to our clients. That’s all we do and we’re really good at it!
We’re not expert email account providers or domain registrars so we don’t offer these services. Many general hosting companies do bundle all these services together, but if you want the best service possible, do you go to a generalist or a specialist?
Shared hosting with bundled email is ok for casual users and small personal websites, but if your website and email are critical to the running of your business, opting for “best of breed” service specialists to handle each task is the option that will offer you the best performance, flexibility, and security.
The Benefits of Hosting Your Website and Email on Separate Servers
Best practice aside, there are several other benefits to keeping your website and email on separate servers and managed by different providers.
1 Forget About Spam
One big benefit to using a specialist email host is that they take spam seriously. Yes, your free bundled email may have some kind of spam filtering built-in, but the chances are that it’s either not that good and lets spam through or (even worse) it marks genuine emails as spam.
Email hosts know all about spam – it’s their job to make sure their clients have a premium experience when it comes to email, and that means they invest in some of the most accurate and up-to-date spam filtering technology around.
2 Avoid Being Blacklisted
With shared web hosting, you always run the risk of sharing an IP with someone who may be using less than honest business practices. Just as you don’t want your website to be hosted in a “bad neighborhood”, you don’t want your email to be sharing an IP with a spammer.
Sometimes it might not even be a case of misbehavior on the part of your server neighbors. If an email account on the same server as you is hacked and used for sending out spam, this can quickly get your email IP blacklisted too.
In the worst-case scenario, if you’re sharing the same server IP for both your website and email, firewalls may also block access to your site if the IP is blacklisted. A spammer on the same server as you could essentially wipe out your entire business with no warning!
3 Improved Reliability and Portability
The problem with putting all your eggs in one basket is that if you drop the basket they all smash. Or in server terms, if one service goes down, they all go down.
Now, hopefully you’ve chosen reliable hosting, but no server can guarantee 100% uptime. While it may not be a disaster if your website goes down for a minute or two, you don’t want to risk losing any important emails.
Additionally, if you ever decide to move web hosts and you need to move your email along with it, this is a huge pain and you’re running the risk of losing emails during the transfer period. It can also take several hours for MX records to propagate, which is a long time not to receive any email when you’re using it to run your business.
Host your email with a separate provider and you don’t need to worry about any downtime while you’re switching your web host.
4. No Need to Worry about Server Resource Issues
Finally, if you’re running your website and email services from one server, you’re always running the risk of running low on server resources. This is particularly the case if you’re sending out bulk emails, and is definitely not recommended on a shared host as it can get you banned for being a resource hog.
Our Recommended Email Services
There are many dedicated email services out there but there are a few that we recommend to our WordPress hosting clients looking for email hosting.
G Suite is our top pick for email hosting and we use it ourselves. If you’re one of the 1.2 billion people who use Gmail, you’ll already be aware that Google really knows their stuff when it comes to email.
The search function is just as good as you’d expect from Google, but G Suite also offers advanced spam protection that’s superior to pretty much any other service, and robust security too.
And of course, when you sign up for a G Suite account you not only get email but also Google Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, and several other apps (the paid G Suite versions all offer enhanced functionality over the free versions). All of these services also have great mobile apps.
The basic G Suite plan starts at $6 per user, per month. It’s not the cheapest around, but it’s affordable and great value for money.
Microsoft Office 365
If you use Microsoft’s suite of software such as Word and Excel for work (or you’re wary of potentially giving Google access to your data!), you may prefer the Office 365 email service. Office 365 has spam protection that equals G suite and many businesses believe its layered security protocols are second to none.
Office 365 offers plans starting at 4,20€ per user, per month so it’s comparable to G Suite. It’s worth noting that while G Suite provides better mobile apps, Office 365 provides better desktop apps (with a premium subscription). If you don’t like doing everything in a browser, Office 365 might be a better option for you.
For a high-quality budget email service, Zoho is our number one recommendation. Starting at only 1€ per month it offers a premium service and great value for money.
Just like G Suite and Office 365, Zoho comes with its own suite of tools, but if you’re used to using the Microsoft or Google versions, you’ll probably want to stick with what you’re used to.
If you’re still not ready to make the switch to a premium email service, there is a low-cost alternative:
MrDomain offers basic email hosting with its Mini plan for only 1€ per year. No, that’s not a typo!
What About Transactional or Bulk Mail Services?
Of course, these suggestions are only suitable for general business email. If you want to send out an email blast to thousands of people in one go, you’ll need to use a service designed for bulk email.
And if you want to send an email automatically when a user performs an action on your websites such as registering or making a purchase, you’ll need a transactional email service. This is particularly important for large websites that may generate thousands of emails each day.
Deliverability can be a major issue for bulk and transactional emails. On average, 15% of all commercial mail never makes it to the inbox.
We recommend using a service such as Mailgun, Sendgrid, and Mandrill for sending bulk and transactional emails. These services are experts at managing their email IPs, monitoring abuse and bounce rates, and ensuring their email deliverability rates are the highest in the industry
Choosing a different host for your website and email may seem like additional hassle and expense at first, but it can save you a lot of headaches down the line, and is a must if sending and receiving email is critical to your business functioning.
And with options starting from as little as 1€ a year, there’s really no excuse not to benefit from the increased reliability and flexibility of separating your email from your hosting.
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