Start Featherlight: Set Up Email

OK, you have your domain name and you have your hosting service, time for email.  You should stop sending emails to potential investors and customers from your old AOL account, or worse, hotmail.  Time to be taken seriously and begin building brand in your new company.  The email will be from you@yourcompany.com.

Remember our assumptions:  no servers on our premises.  So your email will be hosted somewhere.   And you may have noticed that email was not one of the criteria explored when choosing a hosting provider.  What’s up with that?

The juggernauts of the internet, Google and Yahoo, have opened up email for all of us.  And it is free.latte-0 No changes to our Latte Grande scale, so we stand at 8% of the daily cost of the big latte with all we have done so far, including the email now.

Context for this discussion is Google Apps For Your Domain (not gmail.com).

Google apps versus your hosting company

Many hosting companies are now excellent at managing SPAM and email.  Google is world-class at managing SPAM, and they are willing to do that plus provide you very substantial email storage space, for free, in return for the chance to provide links to advertisers.  We will cover to the subject of advertisers and email privacy elsewhere.

You can set your own criteria — features, service level, SPAM, etc. — and run your own decision process.  For me, it comes down to simple, clear forces:  Google has a revenue interest in providing an excellent email experience and first class resources to manage it, while for hosting providers, email is a cost with no additional revenue, and they are economically incented to minimize resources on email.

Managing any application such as email, comes with some time requirement to add, modify and delete users.  But once you invest that time, managing additional applications using the same login credentials is relatively frictionless.  In the case of using Google apps for your domain for email, it means you can take advantage of calendars, chat and especially docs with little or no extra effort.  Google docs is an outstanding collaboration tool.  And all of this is available to your company for free.  Check out what students are doing with them here. db

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