Like much of the online world, email services have gone from paid to free since their early days as internet pioneers. With so many choices out there, it can be hard to figure out what’s best for you, so we’ve listed some of the best free email providers on the market below.
If you’re not sure whether you need them or not, we also included some comparisons of free and paid email providers to help you decide which one might work best for your business or personal communication needs.
You probably already have an email address that you use on a daily basis. If so, it’s likely hosted by one of two big companies: Google or Microsoft. Both companies provide free email services but they also track your data and sell it to third parties in order to make money.
ProtonMail is completely free, open-source, and has all its security features turned on by default. That means, unlike other free providers, you don’t have to pay for extra features—like a safer inbox—that is built into every account from day one.
While ProtonMail’s services can’t beat a paid email account if you have heavy email needs, they are a good option for anyone who just wants an easy way to manage their email without all of their personal information being handed over to third parties.
With 10GB of storage, a unique interface, and additional features like encryption, FastMail is one of our favorite free email services. Plus, it has its own browser-based mail client so you can send mail from your desktop or even from your browser on any computer.
The catch? You can only use it with a custom domain or FastMail’s $5/month premium service. Still worth checking out if you have an extra domain floating around to make sure it works before spending money, but you’ll need to read up on all of its feature limitations carefully.
Remember to read its terms of service carefully and don’t rely on its ads as a sole source of revenue for your business. It may be free, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t still selling your data.
Google’s email service is free and offers 15GB of storage, though you can pay for more if you need it. The interface has been revamped several times over Google’s 10-year history, but generally sticks to a classic email format.
You get basic search filters, multiple account management, and even automatic message encryption (if you use two-factor authentication).
You won’t find much in the way of additional features here, but it’s an excellent choice for business users who want something easy to manage without any bells or whistles. [Google] Mail is a good way to keep your email inbox nice and clean. It has one basic interface that puts all emails on equal footing with none taking up more space than others.
This makes navigation simple because you can quickly skim your inbox and decide whether an email requires immediate attention or not… The bare-bones approach gets old quick if you like advanced options such as image blocking, categorization tools, and social media integration—it doesn’t integrate with other services like Outlook does nor does it support mailing lists—but if you just need a simple alternative to Microsoft’s service without paying too much per month then Mail will do… On top of all its similarities with Google Docs (apps, documents, plug-ins), Google also offers priority customer support via telephone and chat around its mail service.
Zoho is one of our favorite free email providers. The basic package includes 5GB of storage, which should be more than enough for most users, but there are larger options if you need more space.
The user interface is pretty standard and easy to navigate, but what really sets Zoho apart is its impressive list of features. It has a snooze feature that lets you put off emails until later in the day and supports desktop notifications as well as third-party add-ons like Boomerang for Gmail.
Microsoft Office 365 is a great way to get up and running with all of Microsoft’s essential office productivity software, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and more. This web-based suite of software is completely free for businesses and organizations with fewer than five users.
If you have between five and 50 users in your business or organization, however, Office 365 is available at an annual subscription rate of $6 per user per month ($72 per year). For any organization that has more than 50 active users—including those who might need Office access from outside your company’s firewall—Microsoft will provide you with access to Exchange Online for $4 per user per month ($48 per year) as part of their E3 plan.
Email can feel like an invasion of privacy. Even when you’re a public figure, there are plenty of reasons to want to be anonymous when corresponding with others. That’s why more and more people are using Hushmail, an email provider that lets you send messages without revealing your identity or IP address.
The service also encrypts all emails by default, so even if someone manages to intercept your message in transit, they’ll only see something like a jumble of letters and numbers. As with most email providers, sending messages through Hushmail is completely free; there are no limits on how many messages you can send or receive.
There is one paid option: You can pay $24 a year for an encrypted phone number that lets you call and text directly from your inbox.
There are many email companies, but few offer truly free service. Emarsys’ open-source email marketing platform is free to use, even if you’re not an eCommerce business—it covers up to 2,500 contacts and 100 emails per month.
As with most online tools, though, they only give you what you put in. If you want more users or a bigger budget then pay for their Pro plan—their pricing is competitive with other leading platforms at roughly $50 for every 50K contacts. When it comes to features such as surveys and analytics reports, Emarsys gives a lot of bang for your buck.
After trying a number of other email marketing services, MailChimp was one that truly felt like it was built by marketers, for marketers. Its clean interface, robust functionality, and unparalleled support are just a few of the many reasons why it has become such a beloved tool in our arsenal.
If you are looking for an easy-to-use service that will help you send emails to your customers or subscribers on autopilot, then look no further than MailChimp.
Sendgrid is free until your account reaches 3,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails per month. Paid plans start at $9 a month for up to 100,000 subscribers with advanced features like image support. A free developer plan is also available if you want to build on top of their API.
Email marketing software is known for its exceptional customer service and simple-to-use interface. Hired: On-demand salespeople who will place a call on your behalf to make appointments and keep you from doing it yourself.
MailChimp: Email marketing software designed for SMBs and eCommerce companies, as well as simpler projects—and it’s free for lists of up to 2,000 contacts. SendGrid: Another email delivery provider that does not charge extra fees for higher volumes.
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