Every year hundreds of billions of emails are transmitted to users all over the globe. Many social media analysts have wrongly pronounced the death of email in favor of social media messaging platforms. To put this into perspective, last year roughly 188 billion email messages were sent. The bottom line is that email is alive and well.
While email isn’t dead, it is most certainly changing. This means that companies need to find new ways of sustainably scaling email databases without exhausting in-house IT resources. When it comes to choosing a business email provider, companies are left with two choices: free email providers like Gmail or dedicated email providers. As with any tech solution, there are some trade-offs for each.
What about free email providers?
Well, for starters they’re free. For many businesses on an extremely tight budget this is all they need to hear to start using Gmail. However, the trade-offs may not be worth it, depending on your business needs. The main problem is that with a free email provider you’re giving up a certain amount of data control. For instance, if you find yourself in the middle of the night having problems with sending email messages, you’re basically left to your own devices. This means combing through pages and pages of forums and tutorials before finding a solution. That is, if you find a solution at all. Also, your email provider has no obligation to keep your data private or to continue giving you access to it. They can shut it off at any point. Though it’s unlikely that Google is going to lock you out of your account, they do display text ads in your browser based on words found in your emails.
Subscription-based cloud email providers for business
The big trade-off upfront is cost. However, it’s important to keep in mind that you get what you pay for. The majority of credible, dedicated cloud-based email providers offer around-the-clock support for their customers.
On top of that, you can customize just about any aspect of your email service. The most important aspect of this comes with domain branding. A dedicated cloud-based email provider allows you to send emails using your business’s domain to bolster your brand.
Also, if your company changes in size, you can easily scale email services as you require. According to a recent report by the Radicati Group, the number of email users is expected to grow to almost 2 billion by 2013. That’s actually the beauty of the cloud. You don’t have to pay for email server space that you’re not using. Pay for what you use.
With the cloud there are no one-size-fits-all options. For a time, your business may actually benefit from a free email provider. But at some point your business may grow to a point where a free email provider will no longer cut it. You and your team, however large, will have to take an honest look at your email system to come up with the best solution for your business.