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Should My Email Host be Different than My Web Host?

Oct 21st, 2017

There are many services a web host can offer and many of them are absolutely necessary, such as a dedicated server when you have a huge website that gets hundreds of thousands of hits every day. But web hosts also offer services that, while convenient, aren’t really necessary. Email hosting is one of these. When a web host offer emails hosting, they’re offering to give you an email address that’s directly in line with your website such as name@domainname.com.

Taking a web host up on this service can certainly streamline certain processes and make it easier. For example, instead of remembering two login names and passwords, you only need to remember one. But while this might be more convenient, there are many reasons why website owners should in fact, keep their email hosts and web hosts separate.

It’s important to remember that web hosting is for hosting websites, while email hosting is for hosting email addresses. It makes sense that web hosts will put more focus on their actual web hosting than they will hosting email addresses, and they should. That is after all, their business. But it also means that if something goes wrong with your email address such as you suddenly stop receiving emails, you will be a lower priority to your web host than someone that has had their website completely shut down unexpectedly.

Email also takes up a lot of space. There is a vast amount of space used not only in the emails that are being sent and received, but any attachment also takes up more space on the server you’re using. This storage space is valuable space that your website could be using instead, and you pay good money for it. So why would you waste your money on that when you could be spending it on space for your website – the thing your web host is actually providing and focusing on?
Because the focus of any web host will not be on their email hosting, they also won’t invest in it as much as they should. Their email software may be lacking, they may not make it a priority to keep that software up to date, and the interface and functionality will not be of the highest quality. And those who are used to using email such as Outlook or Gmail are sure to be disappointed. You don’t want to be paying for something that’s not as good as the exact same service you can get for free.

Lastly, but perhaps more importantly, if you use your web host as your email host as well, you’ll be locked in to using that web host as long as you want your email address. It can be a real pain to change your email address with everyone you’ve ever had contact with; and if you’re a business, it could actually lose you money. When your email is separate from your web host, you can still move your website to a new web host at any time, without worrying about losing your email contacts, too.

Using your web host as your email host can certainly be more convenient. But like anything that has a convenience factor, it may cost you a lot in the long run. It’s best to keep your web host and email host separate so that when one thing goes wrong with one of them, you won’t lose everything in the meantime. And your email hosting and web hosting will probably be better for it.