WP Mail SMTP is the go-to SMTP plugin for WordPress users, with over 3 million installs and support for many email service providers through its premium features. Its easy setup wizard makes it a breeze to use, and its advanced features, such as email logs and multisite support, are available in the premium version. By using WP Mail SMTP, you can make sure that your WordPress emails are sent reliably and safely.
Quick Steps for Installing and Configuring WP Mail SMTP
Step 1: Install the WP Mail SMTP Plugin.
The first step is to install the WP Mail SMTP plugin on your WordPress site. You can do this by navigating to Plugins > Add New and searching for “WP Mail SMTP.” Once you have found the plugin, click on the “Install Now” button and click “Activate” once it has been installed.
Step 2: Configure the Plugin Settings
Next, navigate to the WP Mail SMTP settings page by clicking WP Mail SMTP in the left-hand menu. From here, you will need to enter your SMTP credentials. The following settings are typically required:
- From Email: All WordPress emails will be sent from this email address.
- From Name: Emails will be sent using this name. The name of the form should be the title of your website.
- Mailer: If you will be using the SMTP server provided by your host, you must choose “Other SMTP” here.
- Return Path: Check this box to get delivery or bounced message notifications.
- SMTP Host: The SMTP host address that your hosting provider gave you is shown here.
- Encryption: the encryption technique your mail server employs while sending emails. TLS is typically used.
- SMTP Port: The mail server’s outgoing port is this one.
- Auto TLS: You should have this setting turned on.
- Authentication: Must be turned on.
- SMTP Username: Typically, you send emails using this address. SMTP Password: This is the password for your email account to send emails. We don’t recommend saving SMTP passwords here. Instead, you need to store your password in the wp-config.php file.
Step 3: Check Your Connectivity
Once your SMTP credentials have been entered, click the “Save Settings” button to save your changes. To send a test email, click the “Email Test” option and input an email address. You should receive the test email in your inbox if everything works correctly.
Common SMTP Settings for Popular Email Hosts
Here are some standard SMTP settings for popular email hosts, for example:
- Gmail: SMTP Host: smtp.gmail.com, Encryption: TLS, SMTP Port: 587
- Outlook.com: SMTP Host: smtp.office365.com, Encryption: TLS, SMTP Port: 587
- Yahoo! Mail: SMTP Host: smtp.mail.yahoo.com, Encryption: SSL/TLS, SMTP Port: 465
- GoDaddy: SMTP Host: smtpout.secureserver.net, Encryption: SSL/TLS, SMTP Port: 465
- Bluehost: SMTP Host: mail.example.com, Encryption: SSL/TLS, SMTP Port: 465
Note: These settings may vary depending on your email provider. We recommend checking with your provider to confirm the correct settings.
Overall, installing and setting up WP Mail SMTP is a straightforward process. By using an SMTP plugin like WP Mail SMTP, you can ensure that your WordPress emails are delivered reliably and securely.
Introduction To WP Mail SMTP Plugin For WordPress
Are you struggling to get your WordPress site to send emails reliably? You may have noticed that your notification emails or messages from your contact form aren’t getting to your inbox. If so, you’re not alone. Due to the limitations of the PHP mail() function on the host server that WordPress uses by default, many WordPress users have trouble getting their emails to their recipients.
The good news is that there’s an easy solution using SMTP to send WordPress emails instead. SMTP, or Secure Mail Transfer Protocol, allows you to send emails through a secure mail server, which improves email deliverability and prevents the abuse of your hosting server. But how can you set up SMTP on your WordPress site? That’s where WP Mail SMTP comes in. With over 3 million installs and a reputation as the best WordPress SMTP plugin, WP Mail SMTP makes it easy to configure your email settings and send emails through a reliable provider. It’s one of my favorite and most used plugins for sending emails via SMTP.
Let’s get started! This article will review the WP Mail SMTP plugin by WPForms, LLC, and show you how to use it. We’ll cover the plugin’s features, pros and cons, and provide step-by-step instructions for installing and configuring the plugin on your WordPress site. We’ll also answer some common FAQs about WP Mail SMTP and offer alternative options for users needing a different SMTP solution. We’ll also throw in some troubleshooting help and discuss some DNS settings you need to improve your email deliverability.
WP Mail SMTP Plugin Overview
WP Mail SMTP plugin is a popular WordPress plugin that allows you to send emails using a secure mail transfer protocol, or SMTP. The plugin is well-known for its extensive support for different email service providers, which makes selecting the ideal service for your requirements simple.
One of the standout features of WP Mail SMTP is its easy setup wizard. You can configure the plugin in just a few simple steps using the wizard, which makes it easy to start sending emails through your desired provider in a matter of minutes. In addition, the plugin offers email tracking for site-wide and WooCommerce-specific emails, making it easy to monitor email performance by tracking metrics such as opens and clicks.
WP Mail SMTP offers a free and paid version, with the paid version offering more advanced features and capabilities. The free version allows you to use most of the popular email providers. The premium version, on the other hand, has more advanced features like email controls, email logs, priority support, and a “white glove” setup. It also works with all of the top SMTP service providers.
WP Mail SMTP Pro Features
While the free version of WP Mail SMTP is excellent, the WP Mail SMTP Pro version has even more advanced features and functionality. Here are some of the most notable WP Mail SMTP Pro features:
- Email Log:
The WP Mail SMTP Pro email log feature lets you track all emails from your WordPress site. You can see when emails were sent, who they were sent to, and whether they were delivered successfully.
- Email Control:
With WP Mail SMTP Pro, you can have more control over your emails. You can resend emails, delete emails, and even modify the content of your emails before they are sent.
- White Glove Setup:
WP Mail SMTP Pro offers a white glove setup service that ensures your plugin is configured correctly and that you use the best email provider.
- Premium Support:
WP Mail SMTP Pro comes with priority support, so you can get help from their support team whenever needed.
- Multisite Support:
WP Mail SMTP Pro allows you to manage email logs and track emails across all sub-sites without navigating to each site. This feature can save significant time and effort for users who work on multiple WordPress sites.
The Pros and Cons of WP Mail SMTP Plugin
- Easy setup wizard for configuring email settings
- Support for major SMTP email providers
- Email tracking for site-wide and WooCommerce-specific emails
- The free version offers the most popular email providers
- The paid version provides advanced features and support for all SMTP service providers
- Some advanced features only available in the paid version
- Multisite support only available in the paid version
The following section will provide step-by-step instructions for installing and setting up WP Mail SMTP on your WordPress site.
How to Install and Setup WP Mail SMTP
To start with WP Mail SMTP on your WordPress website, you must install and activate the plugin. To get you started, check out our step-by-step guide here to install.
- Once logged in, go to Plugins > Add New on your WordPress dashboard.
- Type “WP Mail SMTP” in the search bar and hit Enter, it’s the one with over 3 million active installations.
- Next to the WP Mail SMTP plugin, click the “Install Now” option.
- To activate the plugin after installation, click the “Activate” button.
Upon activation, you’ll see the setup wizard for WP Mail SMTP. You can follow the wizard’s steps to configure your email settings or click “Skip Setup Wizard” to configure the settings manually.
To configure the plugin manually, navigate to Settings > WP Mail SMTP in your WordPress dashboard. Here, you’ll see a form where you can enter your SMTP settings. The settings will vary depending on your email provider, but here are some general settings to enter:
- From Email: All WordPress emails will be sent from this email address.
- From Name: Emails will be sent using this name. We advise utilizing the title of your website as the domain name.
- Mailer: You will use the SMTP server provided by your provider to send emails. Therefore choose “Other SMTP” here.
- Return Path: Check this box to get delivery or bounced message notifications.
Next, you’ll need to enter your SMTP server settings. If you’re using a third-party email provider, you can usually find these settings on their website. You can often use your hosting provider’s email service to find the locations in your hosting control panel.
Here are some general SMTP settings to enter:
- SMTP Host: Your email provider or hosting provider will have given you this SMTP host address.
- Encryption: TLS is commonly used by your mail server as an email encryption method.
- SMTP Port: The mail server’s outgoing port is this one.
- Auto TLS: This setting needs to be turned on.
- Authentication: must be turned on.
- SMTP Username: Typically, you send emails using this address.
- SMTP Password: This is the password for your email account to send emails.
Once you’ve entered your SMTP settings, click the “Save Settings” button to save your changes. WP Mail SMTP will now use your SMTP settings to send emails from your WordPress site.
WP Mail SMTP Competitor Alternatives
While WP Mail SMTP is a popular and reliable WordPress SMTP plugin, there are some alternatives you might consider if you need different features or functionality. Here are a few options to consider:
- SMTP.com: SMTP.com is a popular SMTP service provider that offers a reliable and scalable email solution for businesses of all sizes. They provide advanced email analytics, reporting, and security features like SSL encryption and DKIM authentication.
- SendGrid: You may send and receive emails using a reputable SMTP service thanks to SendGrid, a cloud-based email delivery platform. They offer advanced email marketing and transactional email features, as well as email analytics and reporting.
- Post SMTP Mailer/Email Log: Post SMTP Mailer/Email Log is another WordPress SMTP plugin that offers advanced email logging and debugging features. It lets you view email logs, troubleshoot email delivery issues, and configure your email settings and SMTP credentials.
Overall, WP Mail SMTP is a solid choice for users who need a reliable and easy-to-use SMTP solution for their WordPress site. WP Mail SMTP is the most popular option for many WordPress users, with its extensive support for different email service providers and advanced email tracking and logging features. Whether you choose the free or paid version, WP Mail SMTP makes it easy to configure your email settings and start sending emails through a reliable provider.
WP Mail SMTP FAQs
These are some frequently asked questions and responses about WP Mail SMTP:
- What is SMTP?
SMTP stands for “Secure Mail Transfer Protocol.” It’s a standard protocol for sending emails through a secure mail server.
- Why do I need WP Mail SMTP?
Many WordPress users experience email delivery issues due to the limitations of the PHP mail() function that WordPress uses by default. You can send emails via a secure mail server using WP Mail SMTP, which improves email deliverability and prevents the abuse of your hosting server.
- How much does WP Mail SMTP cost?
WP Mail SMTP offers a free and paid version. The free version allows you to use the most popular email providers, While the premium edition offers enhanced features and support for all the leading SMTP service providers. The paid version starts at $49 per year.
- Can I use WP Mail SMTP with my hosting provider’s email service?
You can use WP Mail SMTP with your hosting provider’s email service. You must enter your SMTP settings, usually in your hosting control panel.
- What are some alternatives to WP Mail SMTP?
Some popular options for WP Mail SMTP include SMTP.com, SendGrid, and Post SMTP Mailer/Email Log.
Side Notes: If You’re Using Outlook for SMTP
If you’re using Outlook as your SMTP provider, you must upgrade to WP Mail SMTP Pro to use it. It is because Outlook requires a specific type of authentication that is not available in the free version of WP Mail SMTP.
However, using a different SMTP provider, you can still use WP Mail SMTP’s free version to send emails through Outlook. The free version of WP Mail SMTP works with the most popular email services, such as Gmail, Mailgun, SendGrid, and Zoho Mail.
Troubleshooting WP Mail SMTP
Although WP Mail SMTP is a reliable and user-friendly plugin, sometimes issues can arise. Here are some common problems that users may encounter and how to troubleshoot them:
- Emails not being sent:
Ensure you have configured WP Mail SMTP correctly if you’re not receiving emails. Ensure you have entered the correct SMTP server settings, including the host, port, encryption method, SMTP username, and password. You should also check that your email provider is not blocking emails from your website’s IP address.
- Email deliverability issues:
If your emails are not being delivered, it may be because they are being marked as spam. To improve your email deliverability, ensure that your emails are not overly promotional, have a clear and concise subject line, and that you’re not sending too many emails simultaneously. You may also consider using a dedicated IP address or a professional email delivery service.
- Plugin conflicts:
Sometimes, WP Mail SMTP may conflict with other plugins on your site. To troubleshoot this issue, disable all other plugins except WP Mail SMTP and see if the problem persists. If the case disappears, you can re-enable each plugin individually to identify the conflicting plugin.
- Error messages:
If you receive an error message when using WP Mail SMTP, try searching for the error message online to find a solution. You may also want to contact WP Mail SMTP support for assistance.
- Updating issues:
If you experience problems after updating WP Mail SMTP, try rolling back to the previous version or contacting WP Mail SMTP support for assistance.
If you’re still having problems after trying these steps, you might want to consider upgrading to WP Mail SMTP Pro, which has more support and more advanced features. WP Mail SMTP has clear instructions and a support forum where you can get more help and find answers to common problems.
In conclusion, WP Mail SMTP is a top-notch WordPress SMTP plugin that can help you send emails through a secure and reliable mail transfer protocol. The plugin is easy to set up and offers extensive support for different email service providers, making it easy to choose the best provider for your needs.
With its advanced tracking and logging features, WP Mail SMTP can also help you track how well your emails work and determine why they aren’t getting delivered. Whether you choose the free or paid version, WP Mail SMTP is a solid choice for users who need a reliable and easy-to-use SMTP solution for their WordPress site.
Overall, we recommend WP Mail SMTP to WordPress users who want to ensure their emails get to their customers’ inboxes and improve how well their emails are delivered. It’s an excellent choice for people who run multiple WordPress sites in a multisite environment since it works well with all sub-sites and supports them. Plus, with its wide range of email service providers, WP Mail SMTP makes it easy to select the provider that best suits your needs.
If you’re trying to find a trustworthy and user-friendly WordPress SMTP plugin, WP Mail SMTP is an excellent choice. Give it a try today, and start sending emails with confidence!
I added some more related information below about SPF, DKIM, and MX.
Understanding SPF Records and Why They’re Important
Sender Policy Framework (SPF) is a protocol for authenticating emails that stops attacks like spam and phishing. SPF lets email servers check that mail from a domain comes from a host that the domain’s administrators have permitted.
SPF specifies a list of authorized mail servers for a domain through DNS records. When receiving emails, the receiving server looks for an SPF record in the domain’s DNS records. If an SPF record is present, the receiving server checks if the IP address of the sending server is authorized to send mail for that domain.
By using SPF records, you can improve your email deliverability and lessen the chance that receiving servers may flag your emails as spam or reject them.
Here is an example of an SPF record for a domain:
v=spf1 mx a:example.com include:_spf.google.com ~all
This SPF record specifies that any IP address that is an MX or A record, for example.com, or is listed in Google’s SPF record (_spf.google.com), is authorized to send an email for the domain.
If you’re using WP Mail SMTP to send emails through your hosting company’s SMTP server, you should also configure your SPF record to include your hosting company’s IP address or SPF record.
Here are some examples of SPF records for popular hosting companies:
v=spf1 a mx include:bluehost.com ~all
v=spf1 a mx include:_spf.siteground.com ~all
v=spf1 include:spf.hostgator.com ~all
v=spf1 include:secureserver.net ~all
Note that these SPF records may differ depending on your hosting plan and configuration. If you’re not sure what SPF record to use, you should check with your hosting company’s support team or consult their documentation.
In conclusion, SPF records are essential to email authentication and can help improve your email deliverability and prevent spam and phishing attacks. By configuring your SPF record to include your hosting company’s IP address or SPF record, you can ensure that your emails are being sent securely and reliably.
Understanding DKIM and Its Benefits
DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) is another email authentication protocol that stops spam and phishing attacks. DKIM enables the recipient to verify that an email came from the domain it claims to originate from and is sent by that domain.
A digital signature is added to the email message’s header as part of the DKIM process. The sending domain’s email server uses a private key to generate this signature. The receiver can then check the signature against the domain’s public key, which is published in the DNS records of the sending party. If the signature is valid, the receiver can be sure that the authorized domain sent the email and that it has not been tampered with in transit.
DKIM is not required for email authentication, but it is highly recommended because it adds another layer of security and can help ensure emails get to their intended recipients.
Here are several advantages of utilizing DKIM.
- Improved Email Deliverability: DKIM can help improve email deliverability by reducing the likelihood of your emails being marked as spam or rejected by receiving servers.
- Reduced Risk of Email Spoofing: DKIM can help prevent email spoofing, in which a malicious sender sends an email that looks to be from a reliable domain.
- Better Brand Protection: DKIM can help protect your brand by ensuring emails are sent securely and reliably.
While DKIM is not a required email authentication protocol, it is highly recommended to configure it for your domain. Most major email providers, including Gmail, Yahoo, and Microsoft, use DKIM to authenticate emails. A valid DKIM signature can help ensure emails are delivered to your recipients’ inboxes.
To configure DKIM for your domain, you will need to generate a public-private key pair and add a DKIM record to your DNS settings. This process can vary depending on your hosting company and domain registrar, so it’s best to check their documentation or contact their support team for guidance.
In conclusion, while DKIM is not a required email authentication protocol, it is highly recommended for its benefits in improving email deliverability, reducing the risk of email spoofing, and better brand protection. If you’re not already using DKIM, it’s worth considering configuring it for your domain to ensure that your emails are being sent securely and reliably.
Setting Up MX Records for WP Mail SMTP
You must set up MX records for your domain to use WP Mail SMTP to send emails from your WordPress website. MX records tell which mail server for your domain is in charge of accepting email messages.
Here’s how to set up MX records for WP Mail SMTP:
- Log into the administration area of your domain registrar. It is where you can manage your domain’s DNS records.
- Navigate to the DNS settings section of your control panel.
- Locate the MX records section and click “Add Record” or “Create Record.”
- Enter the following information for your MX records:
- Name/Host/Alias: Enter the name of the mail server you want to use. It is typically something like mail.example.com or smtp.example.com. Check with your hosting or email service provider for the correct mail server name.
- Value/Answer/Destination: Enter the IP address or hostname of the mail server that you want to use. Your hosting provider or email service provider will provide it.
- TTL indicates how long the record should be stored and stands for Time to Live. The default value is usually acceptable.
- Save the changes to your MX records and wait for the changes to propagate. Depending on your domain registrar and DNS provider, it can take minutes or hours.
Once your MX records have been updated, you can use WP Mail SMTP to send emails from your WordPress website.
Note that the process for setting up MX records can vary depending on your domain registrar and hosting provider. If you’re not sure how to set up MX records for your domain, you should check with your hosting provider or consult their documentation.
In conclusion, setting up MX records is essential to using WP Mail SMTP to send emails from your WordPress website. By configuring your MX records correctly, you can ensure your emails are sent from a trusted mail server and improve your email deliverability.