Why businesses shouldn't use Hotmail

Tips & Hints

Why your business should avoid free mail accounts.

Posted 5 May 2002

When you are in business you need to present an appropriate face to the world.

For an increasing number of businesses their e-mail address is the main contact for clients and suppliers. Just as your business name and address should imply you are in business for the long haul, so too should your e-mail address.

Generally, a free e-mail account such as a Hotmail or Yahoo address are good as emergency fall-backs or for roaming users. But they shouldn’t be used as the main business e-mail account.

Apart from appearing temporary, free accounts have a number of other drawbacks for businesses. Your mailbox is small, you often have to settle for a second-best user name, and of course there is spam.

Spam is a curse for all e-mail users, but free accounts seem to attract it like lint to a belly-button. When you rely on a free account you can expect to wade through mountains of junk to find your important mail. Worse still, your messages could be mistaken for junk by the recipients.

One of the most important business assets is the business name. You should protect your name by registering a domain then delegating it to your e-mail account. We covered this in a previous small business tip.

E-mail is a valuable business tool and it is important you get it right. A free e-mail account may be cheap and it may be the right thing for backpackers and teenagers, but it is not for business use. Spend the money and set it up properly.

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