Finding The Best Email Provider For Your Business

Different email providers offer varying features, deliverability, and user base. Here’s a look at the ones you should consider in 2024.

email provider

Businesses need email marketing to survive. We use it for prospecting, in-house memos, recruitment, and all business communication needs. 

You’ve got widely known names like Gmail or Outlook. But as your business grows, so does the need for better, more streamlined communications. 

So, which among the many email providers should you choose? We’re here to help answer that question. In this article, we’ll be covering:

  • The importance of choosing the right email provider 
  • Types of email service providers
  • Top email providers to look into this 2024
  • Frequently asked questions

Does Your Email Provider Matter?

Email providers do the same thing—letting users send and receive emails. The only difference is the specific features they bring to your business. 

Gmail has you covered if you’re looking to send and receive emails. If you’re a company with 700-1000 employees, then Outlook might be the better choice, thanks to its integration features. 

Prospecting requires you to use an email provider with high deliverability or one that most of your target audience uses. That’s because preferential treatment is given to on-network emails. 

If most of your audience uses Gmail, you’re better off using Google Workspace. The same goes for Outlook or any other email provider.

All in all, the email provider you use will always matter. It depends entirely on what you’re trying to use it for and the features necessary to streamline your daily business tasks. 

Types of Email Service Providers

There are two types of email accounts—email clients and webmail. Going over the differences helps us identify which email provider fits our needs. 

Email Clients

Email clients are email software that you need to install on your computer. The client connects to a remote email server and lets you manage your emails.

Popular email clients include Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, Apple Mail, eM Client, and Mailspring. But, most email clients can also be used through the browser or “webmail.”

Webmail

Webmail is an email provider that exists solely on the cloud. These don’t require you to install email software on your computers. You use your browser instead. 

The most notable Webmail providers include Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo! Mail. Webmail is typically free. But upgrades to storage, integrations, and other features might cost a fee. 

Top Email Providers to Look Into This 2024

We’ve curated a list of the top email providers (both paid and free) for the most important business needs. Find what works for you based on the features you need most. 

Cold Emails: Google Workspace 

google workspace

Cold emails are still considered one of the highest ROI marketing strategies. Since Gmail is the most widely used email service provider, it makes sense that it works well with cold emails. 

However, there is still a large chunk of businesses that solely use Outlook. So, if you want to cold email B2B leads, you can try doing a 50/50 split between G-Suite and Office 365. 

GoDaddy domains are also relatively cheap compared to Google’s. You can buy your domains here and set them up in your Google Workspace

Best Features:

  • Domain name email addresses ([email protected])
  • Google Calendar’s ability to create accessible calendar events for the entire company
  • Smart Compose (Google’s AI-powered content creation assistant). 

Pricing:

  • Business Starter: $5.60/mo.
  • Business Standard: $10.80/mo
  • Business Plus: $18/mo.
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

It’s recommended to use three emails per account. Warm up the accounts before running cold email campaigns. The daily recommended sending limit is about 50 emails per account. 

That means splitting the emails you send between warmups and outreach (30 outreach, 20 warmups daily). 

In-House Business Communications: Outlook (Office 365)

office365

Outlook is best for in-house business communications for medium and large companies. Creating email distribution lists is also slightly easier compared to Google Workspace. 

One of the best features of Outlook comes in the form of its “Focused Inbox.” Users who activate the features enable Outlook to use machine learning to analyze incoming emails. 

It then ranks the emails and shows you the most important ones. But you can easily switch between the focus tab and your basic inbox with a single click. 

Best Features:

  • 15 GB of free email storage
  • Integration capabilities with Microsoft applications like Excel or Word
  • Professional business email features like custom email signatures

Pricing:

  • Microsoft 365 Business Basic: $6.00 user/month
  • Microsoft 365 Business Standard: $12.50 user/month
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium: $22.00 user/month
  • Microsoft 365 Apps for business: $8.25 user/month

Outlook has over 400 million active users, making it the second most-used email provider next to Gmail, which has a whopping 1.8 billion users. 

Storage Space: Yahoo! Mail 

yahoo mail

If, for any reason, you need one terabyte of free storage, Yahoo! Mail has you covered. Most popular email providers like Google or Microsoft only offer 15GB of storage with their free plans. 

The storage space alone should make Yahoo! Mail appealing to people sharing photos, videos, or documents regularly through email. Some even use Yahoo! Mail as an external gallery. 

Aside from storage, Yahoo has nifty categorization features such as “Emails to myself,” “Receipts,” or “Shopping.”

Best Features:

  • Massive 1TB free email storage. 
  • Seamless synchronization with Yahoo Calendar
  • Media and document organization 

Pricing:

  • Free 14-Day Trial of Yahoo Plus
  • Yahoo Plus: $5/mo. 

Subscribing to Yahoo Plus upgrades the storage from 1TB to 5TB. Users get an ad-free interface, the ability to create email aliases, and domain blocking. 

But unlike Gmail or Outlook, Yahoo! Mail doesn’t have many machine learning or AI Features. You’d have to manually update your preferences for things like notifications, filters, and more. 

Individuals/Branding: Mail.com

mail.com

Let's say you’re a freelance gardener. Instead of having an email with the domain “@gmail.com,” you can get one that says “@gardener.com.”

Mail.com can make this happen without you buying a domain and setting it up with something like Google Workspace. Users can choose from over 200 domain extensions ranging from “professional” domain names to “for fun” ones.

The service is free, but users will get ads. To eliminate ads, users can get the premium version of Mail.com. Upgrading comes with additional storage space and premium features such as:

  • Digital word processor and spreadsheet tools
  • Real-time calendar for contact and appointment management
  • Pre-made templates (you can also create your own)

Best Features:

  • Ability to choose from over 200 domain extensions
  • Built-in antivirus and spam filters
  • Two-Factor (2FA) authentication

Pricing:

  • 3 Month Premium: $9.99
  • 12 Month Premium: $29.99
  • 12 Month Premium + 110 GB Cloud Storage: $47.87

Simple Interface: AOL

AOL mail

AOL (America Online) gets a lot of slack for being an “outdated” email provider. But, there was once a time when it stood above all the others.

That era is long gone. However, even today, AOL still keeps up in terms of quality user experience. And, like Yahoo! Mail, AOL also offers users 1TB of free storage!

Although modern email providers like Gmail trump AOL in features and functionality, AOL allows users to import email contacts from a CSV or TXT file. Users also get the nostalgic news-based homepage. 

Best Features:

  • 1 TB of free storage
  • Contact importation
  • The “Views” section can easily organize photos, documents, subscriptions, or contacts. 

Freelancers or Solopreneurs: NEO

best email provider for freelancers

Freelancers and solopreneurs who are just starting out can find it difficult to establish trust and authority. With NEO, they can create a domain name and a one-page website to help boost their online credibility. 

It’s like having an intuitive website builder on top of an email provider. NEO also has various email marketing functions, including follow-up reminders, email templates, appointment scheduling, and integration features. 

Best Features:

  • Ability to create a custom email address with a free domain name. 
  • Email tracking and email marketing templates
  • Free one-page website builder with contact forms and social media functionality

Pricing:

  • Business Starter: $1.75/mailbox/month (billed annually)
  • Business Plus: $3.49/mailbox/month (billed annually) 

NEO has competitive pricing per mailbox. Users also get a lot of value since it allows them to build a one-page website. If you use NEO, make sure to build a landing page optimized for conversions. 

Apple Ecosystem Users: iCloud Mail

apple mail

If you plan on working mostly within the Apple Ecosystem, use iCloud Mail. You get a free email account and 5GB of cloud storage, and Apple users can sync photos, documents, and email. 

But one glaring downside is that your cloud storage is shared between your devices. Taking tons of photos on your phone quickly takes up space for mail storage. That’s why upgrading your iCloud storage is also recommended, starting at $0.99.mo. 

The main appeal of iCloud Mail for the Apple ecosystem is the ease of integration, seamlessly synching your emails across all devices. 

Best Features:

  • Seamless synching across all Apple devices
  • Visually appealing and intuitive user interface 
  • One-click unsubscribe feature

Pricing: iCloud mail is free, and all the upgrades go to more storage space. 

  • 50GB: $0.99
  • 200GB: $2.99
  • 2TB: $9.99
  • 6TB: $29.99
  • 12TB: $59.99

Spam Protection: GMX

best email provider for spam protection

There are billions of spam mail sent daily. You don’t want to receive spam as a user, and more importantly, you want to avoid landing in the spam folder if you’re doing cold emails. 

So, if you’re all about protection, GMX could be an email provider you can try. GMX provides users with virus and spam protection features, SMTP, POP3, and IMAP4. 

Transferring files is also easier, thanks to GMX's file-sharing features. It even allows users to send files as large as 50MB. Here’s the kicker—the ads can sometimes be a bit invasive. 

Best Features:

  • Strong antivirus and anti-spam protection
  • 65GB free storage space
  • Pre-made email filter templates

Aside from spam protection, GMX gives each user ten alias email addresses. You can use one alias specifically for online purchases, keeping your main address free from marketing emails. 

Businesses can also use the extra domains and create emails for specific roles. For example, you can create [email protected] or [email protected].

Encryption and Security: Zoho Mail

best email provider for security

Zoho Mail is part of Zoho’s vast array of cloud-based professional services. When integrated with Zoho CRM, you get some of the best email tools for e-commerce.

Zoho Mail is a standalone email service provider with 99.9% uptime, secure end-to-end encryption, and strong security and surveillance features.

Users can get a professional domain name for their business, helping them build credibility and authority in their space. You can start for free with 5GB of storage and five mailboxes. 

Best Features: 

  • Integration with Zoho’s vast array of cloud-based services
  • A wide selection of email organization features
  • Domain name creation

Pricing:

  • Mail Lite: $1 per user/month (billed annually)
  • Mail Premium: $4 per user/month (billed annually)
  • Workplace: Starts from $3 (custom pricing depending on needed features)

Mail Lite already has many powerful features, such as domain aliases, email hosting for multiple domains, and collaboration tools.

Upgrading to the Mail Premium version gets you all the features from Mail Lite with the addition of 1GB of email attachments, backup and restoration, email archival, and white labeling. 

Personal Privacy: ProtonMail

proton email

Everything you do online—every click, search, or video you watch is being recorded and analyzed. Data from your online activity is then sold to the highest bidder. 

Before you know it, you’re bombarded with ads. Even your emails contain trackers that monitor your activity. If you’re tired of all that—use ProtonMail. 

But don’t let ProtonMail’s tough email encryption fool you. It has one of the most intuitive user interfaces optimized for productivity. 

Best features:

  • One of the best free privacy and user-centered email provider
  • Complies with multiple independent security audits for email
  • Offers strong end-to-end email encryption for all users 

Proton has multiple pricing options for individuals and businesses. Their free accounts give users 1GB total email storage, one free email address, and 150 daily emails. 

Pricing:

  • Mail Essentials: €6.99/per user/month (10 email addresses per user)
  • Business: €10.99/per user/month (15 email addresses and ten custom email domains) 
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

Key Takeaways

Gmail and Outlook aren’t your only choices regarding email providers. But, each provider serves its own purpose. Here’s a quick rundown of the top email providers to look into this 2024. 

  • Google Workspace: Most popular with high deliverability. Perfect for cold emails.
  • Outlook: Best used within medium to large companies. 
  • Yahoo! Mail and AOL: Highest free storage capacity at 1TB. 
  • NEO and Mail.com: Best for entrepreneurs and solopreneurs.
  • Zoho, Proton, and GMX: Best for privacy, security, and end-to-end email encryption
  • iCloud: Best used within the Apple Ecosystem

If you want to run cold email campaigns, the best pairs would be Google Workspace or Microsoft 365 domains linked to Instantly.ai. Users can use unlimited email accounts and unlimited email warm-ups. Try it out for free today!