A free email solution is great when your organization is first starting out. But how do you know when you have grown beyond the capabilities of your free email service and you need a more sophisticated solution? The business email requirements of a growing company are much different than those of a small startup. Whether you’re using Outlook.com or another provider, there are signs that indicate your business has outgrown free email.
The following list identifies six important capabilities you need now (or in the future) to ensure your email solution doesn’t hold you back. Needing any one of these capabilities is an indication that it’s time to consider moving from a free to a paid email solution:
- Security—If you’ve experienced a security breach—or are even worried about it happening—you need a more sophisticated solution that offers increased, enterprise-class security capabilities.
- Storage—You’ve reached your storage max: a very simple reason to upgrade. Storage space should never cause you to delete or change how you use your email, especially when paid solutions offer large stores of data.
- Tools—Free email tools don’t typically provide robust inbox- and user-management tools. Paid email solutions offer a range of features for managing users as well as extensive rules for managing your inbox—enabling you to spend less time managing your inbox and more time managing your business.
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- Domain names—Using a custom domain for your business email is a vital way to ensure your business appears professional. For example, “email@example.com” has a lot more credibility than “firstname.lastname@example.org.” While free custom email addresses are available, they often leave you open to security threats, because the company you host through will likely have access to your data and other information.
- Data—If you’ve ever felt the need to own and manage your email data, it’s time to move to a paid solution. Often, when you agree to free email terms, you’re granting the email provider permission to mine your data and send you ads—which is how their companies remain profitable while offering free services. Not only can this distract from your work, it also puts your company’s data at risk.
- File sharing—Need to share files and collaborate securely with your team? Paid email solutions enable team-based collaboration and sharing without putting confidential company information at risk.