Are you looking for the best SMTP service providers?
An SMTP service provider helps you reliably send emails from your website to your users.
SMTP servers are especially configured to ensure that your emails reach users’ inbox and don’t end up in the junk mail folder.
In this article, we will share the best SMTP service providers with high email deliverability. We will also show you how to send your WordPress emails using these SMTP services.
Why You Need an SMTP Service Provider for WordPress Emails?
All WordPress websites rely heavily on email to do various tasks. For example:
- Recovering lost password
- Registering a new account
- Notifications for comments, new articles, password changes, and more
- If its an online store, then sending customers order confirmation, invoices, and delivery information via email.
By default, WordPress is configured to send emails using the PHP mail() function. This is the primary reason why users complain about WordPress not sending email issue.
There are a number of problems with the default mail method, and why it doesn’t work.
Most hosting providers don’t have this function configured properly. Some even disable it completely to prevent their servers from abuse.
Misusing this function is a common problem as it does not require authentication and can be used to send spam emails.
Even if the mail function is working on your WordPress hosting, sometimes your WordPress emails may still end up in spam because most spam filters will verify sender email, location, domain name, and it would flag your site email as suspicious or spam.
The only way to fix this problem is by using an SMTP server to send WordPress emails.
What is SMTP?
SMTP or Simple Mail Transfer Protocol is the industry standard to send emails on the internet. It uses proper authentication which increases the chances that your emails will actually get delivered in users inbox.
There are both paid and free SMTP service providers. In fact, you can get a free SMTP account with a business email address from Google or Outlook.
However, there is a limit on how many emails you can send using the traditional email services. Usually, these free email providers like Gmail or Outlook don’t want you to use their SMTP servers for automatic emails like those sent by a WordPress website.
This is why you need to sign up with one of the well-known SMTP service providers to ensure that your emails are properly delivered. Don’t worry, a lot of the top SMTP companies offer very generous free SMTP plans that are good enough for most websites.
Let’s take a look at the best SMTP service providers with high deliverability.
Best SMTP Service Providers
There are many SMTP service providers that allow you to send mass emails, WordPress emails, transactional emails, and more.
However, each one of them is different in terms of features, pricing, ease of use, number of emails allowed on free plan, and most importantly their track record on deliverability.
Following are the best SMTP service providers that offer higher deliverability and best set of features.
It works beautifully with WordPress and other third-party platforms like OptinMonster, Salesforce, Google Analytics and many more. They also offer powerful personalization and marketing automation features to help with your marketing campaigns.
SendinBlue has a highly extensible API and SMTP relay service which instantly improves your email delivery for transactional emails.
Pricing: SendinBlue has a forever free plan with 300 emails per day. Their paid plans start from $25 per month with 40,000 emails per month and no daily sending limits.
Mailgun is a popular SMTP service provider for developers and businesses. They offer powerful APIs to send transactional emails.
It is easy to integrate into your WordPress website. Whether you are an eCommerce store, a membership website, or a small business, Mailgun offers an easy to scale SMTP service to send your marketing and transactional emails.
It is designed for developers and lacks some of the beginner-friendly features of other SMTP providers on the list.
Pricing: Mailgun offers a ‘pay as you go’ plan with first 10,000 emails free. The free plan is more than enough for small websites. Their paid plans are fairly competitive in the market. However if you want a dedicated IP and improved deliverability, then it starts at $79 per month with 1 dedicated IP address.
SendGrid is a powerful cloud-based SMTP email service provider that allows you to send mass emails without managing an SMTP server. It offers higher scalability with a powerful set of features.
Their SMTP relay is easy to setup and works with any WordPress site. It includes delivery optimization tools, email analytics, email templates with a simple email editor, and integrations with third-party apps and services.
If deliverability is your main concern, then SendGrid offers great tools to further improve email delivery including dedicated IP addresses and domain name authentication tools.
Pricing: They offer a free plan with first 40,000 emails free and then 100 emails per day. Their paid plans start at $14.95 per month.
AWS or Amazon Web Services is the industry leader in cloud computing infrastructure. They also offer Amazon SES or Amazon Simple Email Service as an add-on to their web services.
It is a powerful cloud-based SMTP service for marketers and developers to easily send marketing, notification, and transactional email campaigns.
It offers higher deliverability with cost efficiency of AWS. You get a lot of powerful features, but most of them are suitable for advanced users and developers.
Amazon SES can be easily integrated into your WordPress site with the help of plugins (more on this later in the article). Depending on your usage, Amazon SES can be the cheapest SMTP service in the market.
Pricing: If your website is hosted on AWS, then you can use their free tier to send 62,000 emails each month. For other websites, pricing starts at $0.10 for every 1,000 emails you send.
G Suite is Google’s productivity suite for businesses. It allows you to use calendar, Google Drive, Docs, Photos, and Gmail with your own domain name.
This allows you to get a professional business email address while still using the familiar interface of Google. G Suite allows you to use Google SMTP servers to send out emails which means you can set up an email account for your WordPress site and then use it to send WordPress emails.
However, it is only suitable for small business websites and blogs because it can only send 2,000 messages a day. For details see our article on how to set up a professional email address with G Suite
Pricing: Starts from $6 per user per month.
Postmark is another easy to use SMTP service provider for websites, marketers, and businesses. It offers lightening fast email delivery with simpler pricing and easy integration.
Sending transactional emails is their expertise, which means they are focused on deliverability and speed. They offer easy to follow email analytics, account security, mobile-friendly responsive templates, message events triggered with simple webhooks, and more.
Pricing: Starting from $10 per month for 10,000 emails then $1.25 per 1,000 emails.
Office365 formerly known as Outlook is a popular email and productivity suite by Microsoft.
Similar to G Suite, Office365 allows you to create a professional email address for your business. You can also use Microsoft’s SMTP servers to send out emails from your WordPress site as long as you’re a small business.
The business version of Office365 allows you to send up to 10,000 emails per day, but this is combined with your regular emails. We only recommend this if you want reliable emails for your small business website.
You can easily connect Office365 to WordPress using WP Mail SMTP plugin.
For larger membership sites or eCommerce stores, you want to use other SMTP providers in our list above.
Which is the Best SMTP Service Provider?
Aside from the top SMTP providers that we mentioned above, there are literally dozens of others like Mandrill, Mailjet, Moosend, Pepipost, etc.
The large number of choices make it difficult for users to select the best SMTP service provider for their needs.
When choosing an SMTP service, you need to look at three main factors: email deliverability, scalability, and pricing.
Since every platform in our list offers high email deliverability and with exception of G Suite and Office365, all platforms can scale to send millions of emails per day, we will focus on pricing since it’s often a big deciding factor.
At first glance, the free plans look very competitive across all platforms. If you have a small website, then you really can’t go wrong with any our top two SMTP recommendation: SendinBlue, and Mailgun.
However as your website grows, pricing becomes a pretty big factor. SendinBlue offers the most competitive pricing with scalability and most importantly reliable technical support.
For example, if you’re sending 120,000 emails per month, you will pay $66 per month, and you will have a dedicated IP. Whereas for the same amount of sending requirement and dedicated IP, SendGrid will cost $79.95 per month and MailGun will cost $109 per month.
Now if you have a technical team in house, then nothing will beat the pricing of Amazon SES because its $0.10 per 1000 emails. This means 120,000 emails per month will only cost $12 on Amazon SES. The big catch is that their technical support is quite limited. For dedicated IP, you just have to pay $24.95 per month.
For large sites, there really isn’t a more cost efficient SMTP solution than Amazon.
Our pick for best SMTP providers for small business: SendinBlue.
Our pick for best SMTP providers for large business and eCommerce websites: Amazon SES.
How to Easily Connect Your SMTP Service to WordPress
Once you sign up with an SMTP service provider, the next step is to integrate it with your WordPress site. This would replace the default WordPress mail function with your SMTP service, so your email actually gets delivered.
WP Mail SMTP is the best WordPress SMTP plugin which allows you to easily send WordPress emails using any SMTP service provider.
It is available as both a free SMTP plugin and the premium version with more features. The paid version gives you access to email controls to choose which WordPress notification emails to send using your SMTP service provider.
You also get email logs and easier setup for popular SMTP providers like Mailgun, SendGrid, Amazon SES, Gmail, Outlook, G Suite, and more. The Elite plan gives you access to their White Glove Setup where an expert from their team will set up your SMTP service.
Upon activation, you need to visit WP Mail SMTP » Settings page and enter your license key. You can find this information from your account on WP Mail SMTP website.
After entering your license key, the next step is to configure your mailing service.
Scroll down to the Mail section and enter the from email address. This is the email address you have added to use with your SMTP service provider.
After that, you need to enter a from name. Ideally, this should be your website title, so that your users know where the email is coming from.
Scroll down to the Mailer section. If your SMTP service provider is listed there, then you can select it here.
Choosing an SMTP provider will show you settings specific to that service provider with a link to detailed instructions on how to enter the required information.
However, if your SMTP server is not listed there, then select ‘Other SMTP’ option. WP Mail SMTP works with all SMTP providers.
Below that you will now see the information you need to enter. You can find this information on your SMTP service provider’s website under your account.
You will need the following information.
- SMTP Host: You smtp host address which usually looks like this smtp.yoursmtpserver.com
- Encryption: Usually it is either SSL or TLS
- SMTP Port: Usually it is 465
- Authentication: Turn on authentication
- Username: Username provided by your SMTP service usually it is your email address.
- Password: Password for your SMTP service
Now, the plugin recommends that instead of saving your username and password in plain text, you add it to your wp-config.php file. See our guide on how to edit wp-config.php file.
After entering all the required information, don’t forget to click on the ‘Save Settings’ button to store your changes.
You can now send a test email to see if everything is working fine. Switch to the Email Test tab and enter an email address to send a test email.
WP Mail SMTP will now send a test email to the address you entered. Check your inbox to make sure that you got the test email.
Congratulations, you have successfully set up your WordPress site to use your SMTP service provider.
We hope this article helped you find the best SMTP service provider to send WordPress emails. You may also want to see our guide on easy ways to grow your email list faster.