One of the biggest mistakes I see small businesses do is using a Gmail or a Hotmail account for their business email. And to me, there is nothing more unprofessional or off putting than when I try to send a professional, business email and when I find the email address it’s something to the extent of email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. You could have a great product or service, but seeing that email address alone is enough that I won’t reach out. And I’m not the only one who feels like that.
With the rise of people having multiple side hustles or leaving the 9-5 altogether to start their own business, it’s not a big deal to try to fake it while you make it. Everyone on social media isn’t who they are in real life, they’re just portraying that their these successful CEOs or influencers. It isn’t until you see their email address that you know that they’re not serious about their brand or business.
Along with a domain and a website; a business email is one of the most important first step that should be taken when you’re first starting out.
People and other businesses will take you more seriously if you’re serious about business. Having email@example.com is cute and all, but will higher paying clients find it cute or will they think you’re just an amateur trying to break in?
Patty@pattyscakes.com or firstname.lastname@example.org will work a whole lot better for your business email than seeing a gmail or hotmail.com in your email address.
Even if your business is nothing more than a side hustle or you’re just starting out, you want to present to prospective clients that you’re legit. That you’re serious about being a business and making money. A website and proper business email address will show them that you are serious.
I’m not saying you don’t have to host your email on a gmail server, all I’m saying is don’t have your business email saying gmail.com. Google offers something called Google Workspace where you can host your and your business’ emails on their servers for a monthly fee. It includes other Google features such as Google Calendar, Google Drive and more.
Setting up a Google Workspace account isn’t that hard. The most difficult part would be creating DNS entry records to have your email address go from your domain host’s servers and redirect them to Google’s. If you’re unsure of how to do this you can always hire a professional, such as myself, to create the Workspace account for you as well as create the appropriate DNS entries.
And just think, the next time you hand a business card to someone you can feel proud it has your business’ email address on it. Almost like when Pinocchio woke up and the joy he felt when he realized he was a real, live boy.
And something else related to your emails is adding a signature to every email. And by email signature I mean something that says your name, business name, contact info etc. You can had your logo and social media account links in there as well. When you send people emails and they don’t know who you are or what services you offer they might want to investigate if it’s something they’re interested in.
By providing that useful information on how and where to find you online, it makes it easier for them to research you and your business. No one is going to scour the web looking for information about you or your business with no leads to go on. They’re not some teenagers searching to see if their boyfriend/girlfriend is liking other people’s photos. They’re serious about their business and want to see if you are as well.
If you want to be a business, you have to act like a business. You have to look like a business. If you want to be taken seriously in the business world you need to act as if you’re serious about your business or brand.