Does having a professional email account matter?


Is it just me or do: @yahoo, gmail, hotmail, accounts not look professional? I can't imagine cost being an excuse. Most hosting providers include email with the site.

Marketing Email

asked Dec 11 '09 at 14:28
Jeff O
6,169 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • Personally I try to do avoid business with potential contractors who uses gmail or any other free provider. – The Dictator 14 years ago

13 Answers


Three practical reasons to use your own domain for email:

  • trust : If you run a web site on that domain, people can respond to you knowing it'll go to the right place.
  • branding : Reinforce that name!
  • free advertising : The effect is probably minimal compared to a signature with a clickable link, but hey it's free.
answered Dec 12 '09 at 01:17
831 points
  • +1, and I'll add a fourth: It means you can change your backend email system at any time without affecting anyone else. For example you could move from GMail to self-hosted or vice versa. – Jason 14 years ago
  • I'll propose the following analogy... "If you wouldn't host your site at, then you darn well better have your own mail domain." (let alone that web and basic mail hosting are almost always bundled together) – Chris Hagner 14 years ago
  • Nevertheless Chris, many successful bloggers do use Blogger and have those ( I don't particularly like this... – Newyuppie 14 years ago
  • I think blogging is a little different. I can put a link on my website to a blog hosted elsewhere, who cares? Saying, "just send to [email protected] and it will forward to my business email" doesn't cut it. – Jeff O 14 years ago
  • A blog is not a business. It can be a great means of income for someone, but it is not scaleable and therefore not a startup. – Joe 14 years ago
  • Startups have to be scalable? That's a myopic definition. – Jeff O 14 years ago


Yes it looks unprofessional and cost just makes it look worse. Think about it like this: If you won't spend 20 bucks to setup an email on your own domain then how seriously do you take your own business? How could you expect someone else to take it seriously?

answered Dec 12 '09 at 09:33
David B Willis
61 points


it matters, i advice you to register a domain name and use google apps, they will offer you free [email protected] account up for like 20 users.

answered Dec 11 '09 at 15:13
76 points


Any free mail address is totally unprofessional.

Get a domain for yourself or your business and use that.

answered Dec 11 '09 at 14:50
1,471 points


My house cleaner has an on her business card. For that type of business, I am OK with it. My plumber is a

Anything further up the food chain in terms of clients you are serving better have @yourdomain.

answered Dec 11 '09 at 16:55
659 points
  • I would never use that reference for anyone who does work for me. – Jeff O 14 years ago
  • +1 I would have answered "absolutely yes", but you're right -- for small, local-only businesses (trades, etc) I think it makes no difference. – Alex Papadimoulis 14 years ago


Absolutely! Just this week, when hiring creative talent for a small gig, I discounted a couple applicants solely on account of their unprofessional email addresses. Tip: a company named Net Identity owns many MANY common surnames. If they own your surname, as the do mine, there's a chance you could have [email protected]. It's not all... but it looks impressive in email inboxes and resume headers.

answered Jan 28 '10 at 10:12
36 points
  • I do have that email. – Jeff O 14 years ago


If you have your own domain name, it's NOT OK to use email addresses like Why not use your own domain name. I know many non technical people do not know this fact but whoever built their site, should know.

I see sites like and see a contact address on it like [email protected] instead of [email protected]. Why!?

answered Dec 24 '09 at 06:31
384 points


I am trying to read from the email address with whom I I'm talking to. Either is a customer email, or new lead or potential partner, I am looking at the email address.

To some people this could be ridiculous, but people without their domain email often have a need to be hidden for some reason. I am not talking about plumbers here, but business people.

In the situations where I need to go on the low profile, I used to use gmail accounts. Nothing illegal there, just privacy was necessary due to some business reasons.

Bottom line, definitely email address with your own domain name is important, it gives confidence in you (please back it up with proper site :) ) and looks much more professional.

answered Dec 13 '09 at 06:48
594 points


Not only does it add credibility but it gives you control over its usage. Some of those hosted free email solutions have limits on its usage, and you share ip space with some unsavory people.

Imagine trying to email your latest client, and just because some viagra spammer is on that same physical server, your perfectly good email gets put in their blacklist. Not in a spam folder where they can fish it out, just off of their radar because that whole server sent thousands of spams to the clients server. If you have your mail hosted with a paid host, you can control this much more closely.

If it becomes a problem there as well, and email is very important to your core business, then you can pay a little more and be assured delivery by acquiring a static ip for your email communications, usually only a few more dollars a month at a respectable hosting provider.

answered Dec 14 '09 at 13:24
136 points


There is no excuse for not having email to your own domain. Google apps is free, domains cost $7-12 a year. Hotmail and yahoo in particular look clueless/out of date.

answered May 7 '10 at 21:13
236 points


I'm not sure why but my feeling is that Gmail is the least worst of the possibilities if you have to put it in a business card. Then comes Yahoo, and finally Hotmail, which is unacceptable to do business with.

Most people have their company's email, and use Gmail for private email. So the fact that you have a Gmail account does not necessarily mean you can't afford your domain name, it may just mean that you consider the other party SO IMPORTANT that you give him/her your PERSONAL EMAIL! It has actually some cache to it...

answered Mar 14 '10 at 00:11
441 points
  • I would say giving out your personal cell phone number has some 'cache' but not personal email. Are you saying you check it more often? Maybe for off-hours, but so many company users have a blackberry. Agreed if the email is: [email protected] that's pretty impersonal. – Jeff O 14 years ago
  • With my iPhone I'm perpetually connected to my Gmail with push (I don't like Blackberries...) – Newyuppie 14 years ago


Completely matters. Having third-parties manage and store one of the most important parts of my business does not appeal to me at all. All my email's sit securely on my server.

Not to mention who wants to do business with [email protected]?

answered Dec 12 '09 at 12:07
Montana Flynn
323 points
  • Hosting your own email is gutsy. Keeping internet connections (third-party), servers, routers going 24/7 is tough. – Jeff O 14 years ago


As a sales/marketing and business management type, I'd also add that have your own domain and associated email address adds a bit of credibility for little money. It also implies that you've invested in your business - even "the little things".

answered Dec 14 '09 at 02:51
Pam Campagna
11 points

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