Most of the Bloggers, freelancers here are using free Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail ID which is good for personal uses, but when you are working professionally, it’s always a better idea to use a Professional Email address. For example, email@example.com, Payment@domain.com and so on. It not only adds professionalism in your ID but also add credibility to your Email. Wonder, how would it look if I send an Email to a company with my personal Email or via professional email like admin@shoutMeLoud.com ?
Most of the web-hosting companies offer cPanel based Email service which is free for limited number of accounts, but if you are looking for more features such as hangout, docs and others, I would recommend use Google apps for work. Here I’m sharing a guide by taking Bluehost Hosting as an example, which offers cPanel hosting. You can use this tutorial for any other hosting that offers cPanel.
Note: You can also grab hosting from Bluehost now & it offers one free domain. After purchasing hosting you can follow all the below mentioned steps to setup Google apps
- Create account on Bluehost (Free domain included)
Settings up Google Apps Free Trial on any cPanel Hosting:
I don’t recommend to use Email account offered by your hosting companies, as when you move or change hosting, migrating Email account is an issue at times. Whereas, when you are using Google apps, all you need to do is update the Google apps MX records and everything will work like the way it was. Smooth and steady.
I also use the same (Google Apps for work) for my sites and it’s been 7 years, I have never faced any issue. Moreover, for Entrepreneurs or Bloggers who are looking to get an approved AdSense account, I always recommend to use your Professional email address to sign up, which helps in approval process most of the time. So, let’s start with this DIY tutorial and I’m sure if you have not set up Google apps for your domain yet, you going to love it and find it very useful in long run:
- Go to Google Apps trial page & click on Start free trial
- Fill out the details to get started:
Click next & on the next page you get the domain selection option. In this case, we already have a domain (The free domain we got with Bluehost hosting), so we will select option that says “Use a domain name I have already purchased”
Enter your domain name & click on submit.
and next step is to select the domain primary Email address. I usually create one with firstname.lastname@example.org & later on add something under my name. Ex: Harsh@shoutmeloud.com
If you have a startup, you should also create any of the following email address:
- Contact@domain.com or Sales@domain.com or Support@domain.com
After that, fill out other details like your Organization name, address and alternate Email address. While selecting your alternate Email address, use something that you always have access to, as it will be helpful to retrieve password at the time when you lose your Google apps login password.
Once you have filled out all the details, scroll to the bottom, read and accept their TOS and click on “I accept, create my account”!
On the next page, you will be inside your Google apps dashboard and you can start by domain verification:
The very first thing which is required here is to Verify your domain ownership. Here is a video that explains, why it’s required and how you can verify domain:
There are many ways you can verify, and I prefer HTML tag method in Alternate methods, which is quick. Simply add the meta tag in your site header and it will be verified instantly. If you have bought domain from Godaddy or Enom, you can refer to this tutorial for verification.
Once you have verified your domain, you will get a message saying “Congratulations, you have successfully verified your ownership of domain.com”. Now, click on continue and on next page you can add more users and configure various settings like Email, Calender and other services which comes free with Google apps. If you ever get lost, you can always add more users under “Organization and users” tab.
Once you have done all this setup, you will be able to access your Google apps Email account at here http://mail.google.com/a/domain.com , Though you won’t be able to send Email for now. You need to update your MX record from cPanel for Email sending to work. You can also enable SSL feature to enhance security of your Google apps by going to Domain settings > General > SSL.
Google Apps Wizard setup on Bluehost:
So, far we have verified domain ownership and done the basic setup of Google apps standard account.
Now, we need to make some changes inside your Bluehost cPanel.
Bluehost offers Google apps Wizard which makes the setup very easy.
Any cPanel hosting companies can add this Wizard on their hosting using this plugin.
Login to Bluehost cPanel and under domain click on DNS zone editor
On the next page, select the domain name & it would show all the DNS records associated with the domain. What we are interested in here is to configure the MX record that would help us to configure Google apps. Delete the existing MX record & refer to below screenshot for adding new MX record.
For any other hosting, you need to add this MX record for working on Google apps. You can delete all existing entries under MX record of cPanel:
Since, Bluehost offers handy Wizard, we don’t need to do it here. But, any other cPanel hosting which doesn’t offer Google apps Wizard, you need to enter this manually.
Optional step: Now, if you wish to use mail.domain.com to access your Email accounts (Which is handy), simply add following line in your MX record:
And under Google apps settings > Email > URL select mail.domain.com as access URL. It make take up to 48 hrs before all DNS change is reflected and you will be able to use all the features.
I usually recommend to create your domain specific social services like Twitter, Youtube and other social networking account using your professional domain Email, as it will be convenient when you are selling your blog.
- To access Google apps account: https://www.google.com/a/your_domain.com
- Setup custom logo under apps dashboard. Domain Settings > appearance
- Use this free service to check and verify MX records.
So, go on and setup Google apps standard Email for your website or organization for free and do let me know if you are stuck anywhere in the process. If you find this tutorial useful, don’t forget to share it on Facebook and Google plus. You can subscribe to my Email newsletter for more such tutorials.