I was dealing with another attorney the other day on a matter, and I was shocked when he gave me an email address that ended in @optonline.net (the old internet provider in the greater New York area). As I am actively running one, I understand the restrictions of operating a one or two person law firm, but there is absolutely no excuse for you to have a generic email address like @optonline, @gmail,@verizon, or any other local carrier’s domain.
As soon as I thought about this I shot off a tweet about it, and as is the nature of twitter, I was quickly informed that easy options exist for people without any technical knowledge. Since I know the below resources may helps someone, I have complied two options for people to look into.
How to Easily Get a Custom E-Mail Address
GSuite with Custom Email From Google
It took about 3 minutes to figure out google has solved this problem with GSuite. According to wikipedia it isn’t a new product, just rebranded recently,
G Suite (formerly Google Apps for Work and Google Apps for Your Domain) is a brand of cloud computing, productivity and collaboration tools, software and products developed by Google, first launched on August 28, 2006 as “Google Apps for Your Domain”. G Suite comprises Gmail, Hangouts, Calendar, and Google+ for communication; Drive for storage; Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, and Sites for collaboration; and, depending on the plan, an Admin panel and Vault for managing users and the services. It also includes the digital interactive whiteboard Jamboard.
While these services are free to use for consumers, G Suite adds enterprise features such as custom email addresses at a domain (@yourcompany.com), option for unlimited cloud storage (depending on plan and number of members), additional administrative tools and advanced settings, as well as 24/7 phone and email support.
Being based in Google’s data centers, data and information is saved instantly and then synchronized to other data centers for backup purposes. Unlike the free, consumer-facing services, G Suite users do not see advertisements while using the services, and information and data in G Suite accounts do not get used for advertisement purposes. Furthermore, G Suite administrators can fine-tune security and privacy settings.
As of January 2017, G Suite has 3 million paying businesses, and 70 million G Suite for Education users.
With all these features you would think that the cost would be astrominical but it was shockingly low! The features range but the prices range between $5/user and $25/user per month (although I can’t really think about who would need to jump from the $10/mo to the $25/mo option).
Office 365 with Custom Email
I figured that if Google jumped into this space, Microsoft had to be in it as well…and I was right. Starting at $5/mo Office 365 for Business provides you with the custom email that is at the center of this post and when you go up to $12/mo you get access to Microsoft Office! I have no experience in this area but this seems even better than google’s gsuite. To have access to your custom email and both the offline and online versions of word, excel and outlook for the price of lunch seems like a must have for most businesses.
Last, and possibly least for someone with no computer knowledge, you can always host your own domain and create an email. If that last sentence threw you for a loop and made you tilt your head then my guess is that you’ll be all set with the comfort of Microsoft or google!
Just a random thought from last week