It’s true that more and more mail servers of many hosting companies are getting blocked by Hotmail, Yahoo!, and many other big E-mail service providers. After you set up your Email accounts @ your own domains, it is no wonder when you find out you could not sent emails to certain Email addresses, or your Emails could not be received by others, even not included in their junk mail folders.
We’ve also experienced this unpleasant issue a few days before. Two future customers were contacting us using Hotmail, we replied in time, but have received no further Emails from them since then. Then, we realized any Email went from our mail server to Hotmail was lost, and we received even no failure announcement. That’s really a harmful thing for online business.
After hours discussion we decided to use outsourcing Email services. However, there’s another problem. Most big Email Outsourcing programs have even more strict policies against SPAM. The result is, more Emails come from some suspicious mail servers might be prevented from going into our mailboxes. There’s a good example: When I tried to contact one of our service partners, I sent a lot of Emails only to find out that my Email address was blocked by their Email outsourcing service provider. The Email account I used to contact them was a paid Email account from www.gmx.net, one of the biggest Internet Service Providers in Germany.
At last, we find out a best solution, at least it’s currently the best solution for us. That’s also what I want to introduce to all of the webmasters who are suffering from the same problem. The Google Apps, which has a function the same as Gmail, but working effectively with your own domain. Although it’s now only a beta version, it works pretty well, and is free of charge. The most important thing, you don’t need to be worried of not being able to receive and send Emails from and to certain mail servers any longer.
It’s also easy to apply for Google Apps. Go to http://www.google.com/a/ to sign up an account, then logon. When setting up the Email services, you should make sure that all the Email accounts under your domain should be fully created in Google Apps before you change the MX records of you domain, otherwise there would be a risk of losing incoming Emails during the MX records’ propagating time. After all the Email accounts are setup, you’ll need to change the MX records of your domain according to the instructions in your Google Apps account. There are five of them. You could change them easily in your domain control panel of your registrar or by modifying the DNS zone file of your server. After the MX records are all set, your domain will be verified by Google Apps. Since then, your Google Apps account will be fully functional within 24 hours, but usually within seconds.
The entrance of your Google Apps account is http://www.google.com/a/. The Email account entrance is http://mail.google.com/a/yourdomain.com .
If you are using a linux server, don’t forget to edit the /etc/remotedomains file to delete your domain. This will tell Exim not to handle Emails for your domain. Otherwise the Emails sent from your mail server to the Email accounts @ your own domain ( which are now being served by Google Apps) will not be received.
If this could also be called an Email Outsourcing, then it would be a good alternative choice for all the webmasters who want their Email support to be a stable and mostly reachable one.