How To Use The Free SMTP Server To Ship WordPress Emails (four Strategies)

Do you want to use a free SMTP server to send WordPress emails?

By default, WordPress uses the PHP mail feature which is not reliable and often marks your emails as spam. Using an SMTP server is the best way to ensure the deliverability of your WordPress emails.

In this article, we are going to show you how to send WordPress email using a free SMTP server.

Why use an SMTP server to send WordPress email?

Often times, website owners complain that WordPress isn't sending an email problem. The easiest way to fix this is to use an SMTP server to get your WordPress emails into users' inboxes.

By default, WordPress sends emails via PHP mail. Unfortunately, not all WordPress hosting servers are properly configured to use PHP mail.

Even if the emails were sent successfully, they may be mistakenly identified as spam. This means that they can be automatically deleted without ever being seen.

The best way to ensure the deliverability of your WordPress emails is to use an SMTP server. It is the standard protocol for sending e-mail on the Internet.

SMTP servers use proper authentication to ensure that email is being sent from an authorized sender. This improves deliverability and your emails land safely in the user's inbox.

In order to connect your WordPress site to your SMTP server, you will need a plugin to make that connection. We will be using the WP Mail SMTP plugin which is the best SMTP plugin for WordPress.

There is also a free version of WP Mail SMTP.

Let's take a look at how to set up WP Mail SMTP and then connect to popular free SMTP servers.

Install the WP Mail SMTP plugin for WordPress

The first step is to install and activate the WP Mail SMTP plugin. For more information, see our step-by-step guide on installing a WordPress plugin.

After activation you have to go WP Mail SMTP »Settings Page in your WordPress admin area to set up the plugin.

The settings page for the WP Mail SMTP plug-in

You must first enter your from e-mail address and your from name. WordPress emails are sent from this email address and name.

You should leave the "Force from email" check box selected. This will ensure that all email from your WordPress site will be sent from this email address through your SMTP server.

Tip: Just check the "Force by name" checkbox so that all emails have the same name regardless of the settings in plugins like WPForms.

Enter your sender email address for WP Mail SMTP

Next, you need to choose an SMTP mailing service. Just click on the one you want.

Selection of the mailer service for WP Mail SMTP

We'll cover step-by-step instructions for a number of different free SMTP servers. You need to keep the WP Mail SMTP Settings tab open and then follow the instructions for the SMTP server you selected.

Note: If you are not very confident about technical matters, we recommend upgrading to WP Mail SMTP's Elite account. They have a fantastic White Glove setup service to help you get started.

Sending WordPress emails with Sendinblue SMTP server

Sendinblue allows you to send up to 300 free emails per day from your website.

First of all, you need to create an account on the Sendinblue website. After confirming your email address, you will be asked to select a Sendinblue pricing plan.

Just click the "Proceed to a Free Plan" button.

Choose the Sendinblue free plan

You will receive an SMS with a confirmation code to enter. Next, you'll see your Sendinblue dashboard.

Your Sendinblue dashboard

Before proceeding, you need to create a subdomain on your website, e.g. B. mail1.yourdomain.com.

To do this, log into your web hosting or domain registrar account and follow the instructions to add a subdomain.

If you are using Bluehost you have to go to one Domains »Subdomains Page under your hosting dashboard.

Adding a subdomain in Bluehost

Just enter the subdomain you want to use (e.g. mail1) and then click the Create button to continue. Bluehost will add the subdomain to your hosting.

After you've created the subdomain, you'll need to add it to your Sendinblue account.

Add your subdomain to Sendinblue

In your Sendinblue account you need to go to the Settings page. On this page, scroll down to the "Your Senders and Domains" section and click the "Configure" button below it.

From your Sendinblue dashboard, select Configure for Sender and Domain

Then click the Domains tab, then click the Add New Domain button.

Adding a new domain in Sendinblue

Enter your entire subdomain e.g. B. mail1.yoursite.com. Make sure to check the box to confirm that you want to use the domain name to digitally sign your email. Then click the Save button.

Add your subdomain and check the box

Once saved, a pop-up will appear with a list where you can check your domain. The standard method is to host a file. To do this, however, you need to create the HTML file and upload it via FTP.

We recommend the "Add DNS Entry" method instead. This will give you a special code that you need to use to verify your subdomain.

Get the DNS code to enter to check your domain

Tip: Don't worry if you accidentally close this popup. You can access it by clicking the "Check this domain" link next to your subdomain.

Reopen the Verify this domain options in SendinBlue

Next, you need to open the DNS settings for your domain in your web hosting account. Your web host should have instructions on how to do this.

In Bluehost, you'll need to scroll your DNS records to the TXT section.

DNS TXT records in Bluehost

Then create a new DNS TXT record.

For the host record (sometimes referred to as the host or name) you need to enter your subdomain e.g. mail1.yourdomain.com. Depending on your web host, it might already be entered for you, or you might need to enter all or part of it.

For the value (also known as TXT value or TXT data) you just need to copy the special code from Sendinblue.

Make sure to save your DNS TXT record. Then go back to Sendinblue and click "Record Added". Please check it.

Click the button to verify that your DNS TXT record was added correctly

Tip: DNS changes can take up to 24 to 48 hours to propagate. If verification fails, please try again in a few hours.

You will then need to enter two more DNS TXT records so that Sendinblue can authenticate the emails sent by your domain. This improves deliverability.

In Sendinblue, click the "Manage" drop-down next to your domain and select the "Authenticate this domain" option.

A pop-up will appear with details about the DNS records that you need to add. You only need to add the first 2 DNS entries. The third is the one you already added and the fourth is not needed.

Get the additional DNS TXT records to authenticate your subdomain

Just add these to your domain in your web hosting account or domain registrar as you did before. Then click on "Record added". Please check the button for each one.

Now all you have to do is activate Sendinblue on your WordPress site. Just go back to the WP Mail SMTP Settings page you opened earlier and find the API key field.

Then click the "Get v3 API Key" link.

Click the Get v3 API Key link

This link will open the correct page of your Sendinblue account in a new tab. Here you just have to copy the API key.

Get your API key from Sendinblue

After copying, go back to WP Mail SMTP and paste the API key.

Make sure you click "Save Settings" afterwards.

Enter and save your API key in your WP Mail SMTP settings

Everything is set up now. You just have to wait for Sendinblue to activate your account.

Now is the time to test that your email is working.

Sending WordPress emails using Gmail SMTP server

You can use a free Gmail account to send SMTP email. If you don't have a Gmail account, create one before following the rest of the instructions.

First, log into your WordPress administrator, where you should already have WP Mail SMTP installed. On the WP Mail SMTP »Settings On this page, select Gmail as your mailer.

You will see the options for entering your customer ID and your customer secret. There is also a URL that you will need to copy over later. So leave this tab open.

The Gmail setup options in WP Mail SMTP

Then go to the Google Developers Console website. You must agree to the terms and conditions. Then click the "Create project" button.

Create a project in the Google Developers Console dashboard

Now it's time to create your new project. All you have to do here is enter the name you want to use. Then click the Create button.

Name your new project

You will now see your dashboard with your new project selected in the drop-down list at the top of the screen.

You need to click the "Enable APIs and Services" button.

Click here to enable APIs and services

You will then see the API library. Just enter "gmail" in the search bar.

The API library search bar

The page will then be updated. The first result should be the Gmail API. Go ahead and click on it.

Choosing the Gmail API

Next up is some information about the Gmail API. Just click the Activate button.

Click the Enable button for the Gmail API

It can take a few seconds for the API to activate. Next, you need to hit the "Create Credentials" button.

Create your credentials for your Google API

On the next screen, you need to select the following options.

Which API are you using? Gmail API

Where do you call the API from? Web browser (Javascript)

What data will you access? User data

Then click the button "What credentials do I need?".

Start the process of adding credentials to your project

After that, a popup will appear asking you to create an OAuth consent screen. Simply click on the "Set up declaration of consent" link.

Set up the consent screen

The OAuth consent screen opens in a new tab. Here you need to select the "External" type and then click the "Create" button.

Note: We will keep the app in test mode. It will not be open to the public.

Select the External option

Next, enter a name for your app and select your email address for the support email.

Enter the OAuth registration details for your app

Then scroll down to the "Authorized Domains" section, click the "Add Domain" button and enter the name of your domain.

Tip: You have to enter the domain name without http, https or www at the beginning.

Then enter your email address.

Then click the "Save and Continue" button.

Enter your domain and contact email address

Just click the "Save and Continue" button on the "Areas" screen. On the Test Users screen, click the Add User button and enter your Gmail address.

Add test users to your Google app

Then press "Save and Continue" again.

When you get to the summary, return to your other tab to set up your project's credentials.

You can enter any name here or just keep the default name.

Under "Authorized JavaScript origins" you must enter the domain name of your website.

Under "Authorized redirect URIs" you must enter the redirect URL from the settings of WP Mail SMTP.

Enter the URL from your WP Mail SMTP settings

Below is the "Update" button. Click the button, then click the Create OAuth Client ID button that appears.

Click the Create OAuth Client ID button

You have now finished building your Google web application. Just click the Done button.

Click the Done button

You will now see your new web application listed. Click the edit icon next to it.

Next to your new web app, click the Edit button

Here you can see your customer ID and your customer secret.

Copy your customer ID and your customer secret

You'll need to copy and paste this into your WP Mail SMTP settings page. Then click the "Save Settings" button.

Enter your Client ID and Client Secret in your WP Mail SMTP Settings

The page will then be updated. You'll need to scroll down again and hit the "Allow plugin to send email from your Google account" button.

Click the button to authorize WP Mail SMTP to send email using your Gmail account

This will open a popup where you will need to select your email account. You will then see a warning screen. Just click the "Advanced" link, then click the "Go to wpmailsmtp.com" link to continue.

Note: It is completely safe to continue as this is your own app that you created.

Use the Advanced link to continue even though the app has not been verified

A popup will appear asking you to grant permissions. Click the Allow button.

Give WP Mail SMTP permission to access and use your Gmail account

Finally, you'll need to confirm your choices and hit the Allow button again.

Confirm the permissions you give to your Google app

Then you will be directed back to WP Mail SMTP. You will receive a message to confirm that you have successfully linked your website to your Google API project.

Now is the time to test that your email is working.

Sending WordPress emails with MailGun SMTP server

MailGun is another popular SMTP email provider. You can send up to 5,000 emails per month for free for 3 months.

First, go to the MailGun website and click the "Start Sending" button to sign up for an account.

You need to enter your credit card details. If you send more than 5,000 emails or continue after the first three months, your card will be charged at a rate of $ 0.80 per 1,000 emails.

When you're done, click the "Create Account" button at the bottom of the screen.

Enter your details to set up your Mailgun account

You will then see your account dashboard.

Your Mailgun Account Dashboard

Before proceeding, check your email inbox for a confirmation email from Mailgun. You will need to click on a link in that email to activate your Mailgun account.

Tip: You will also receive an email letting you know that an API key has been added to your Mailgun account. That is normal.

Click the link to check your email address with Mailgun

After clicking this link, you will be asked to enter and confirm your mobile phone number. Next, your Mailgun dashboard will reappear.

Now you need to create a subdomain on your website e.g. B. mg.yourdomain.com.

To do this, log into your web hosting account and follow the instructions to add a subdomain. If you are using Bluehost you have to go to one Domains »Subdomains Page.

Adding a subdomain in Bluehost

After creating the subdomain, go back to your Mailgun dashboard and go to Submit »Domains Page.

In Mailgun, click on the side

Next, you need to enter the subdomain that you previously created in your hosting account.

Just leave the domain region set to US unless you are in the EU.

Click the Advanced Settings (DKIM) link to open the DKIM Settings.

Here you should leave the "Create DKIM authorization" check box activated and select 2048 as the "DKIM key length".

Then click the "Add Domain" button.

Adding your subdomain to Mailgun

For instructions on how to verify your domain, see the Add DNS Records to Submit step.

Getting the DNS records from Mailgun that you need to add to your subdomain

You need to log into your web hosting account and add certain DNS records to your subdomain. Your web host should be able to provide instructions on how to do this.

In Bluehost, you'll need to scroll your DNS records to the TXT section.

DNS TXT records in Bluehost

Then create the first new DNS TXT record.

For the host record (sometimes referred to as the host or name) you need to enter your subdomain e.g. mg.yourdomain.com. Depending on your web host, it might already be entered for you, or you might need to enter all or part of it.

For the value (also known as TXT value or TXT data) you just have to copy the special code under "Enter this value" from Mailgun.

Make sure to save your DNS TXT record.

For the second DNS-TXT entry, you must enter the host entry displayed in the "Hostname" column. Then enter the long code in the "Enter this value" column for the value.

After saving your second DNS TXT record, you should also add the MX records from your Mailgun account.

The MX is recording from Mailgun

You enter them like the TXT records. Just make sure you choose MX for each one. Please see our article on changing MX records for more help.

Tip: Your web host may not allow you to add MX records to a subdomain. In that case, it's fine to continue without using the MX records. Note, however, that when sending email to yourself, you may encounter a sender verification error if you use the same email address as your From address.

That's all you have to do. You don't need to add the tracking DNS records.

After you've entered the TXT and MX records, simply click the "Check DNS Settings" button at the bottom of the page.

A screen will ask you how you would like to send your email.

Ignore that and go to the Settings »API key Page. Here you need to click the view button next to the API private key and then copy it.

Copy your private API key from Mailgun

Next, you need to paste the API private key into WP Mail SMTP. Enter your subdomain below. Make sure the correct region is selected, then click the Save Settings button.

Enter your private API key in your mailgun settings

The final step is to test that your email is working.

Sending WordPress emails with SendGrid SMTP server

SendGrid allows you to send up to 40,000 total emails in the first 30 days. After that, you will receive up to 100 free emails per day.

First, you need to visit the SendGrid website and hit the "Get Started For Free" button to create your free account.

After creating your account, you will see your SendGrid dashboard.

The first step is to create a sender identity. Click the Create Individual Senders button.

Click the button to create a single sender

Then just enter the name, email address, and mailing address you want to use for your emails.

Important: This email address must match the address you use as the sender address in your WP Mail SMTP settings.

Create the new single transmitter in SendGrid

You will then see your data in the sender table.

The sender was created in SendGrid

You will receive a confirmation email with a button that you need to click to confirm this business email address.

Check each sender's email address

After you've verified your email address, return to your SendGrid dashboard by clicking the Dashboard link in the sidebar.

The next step is to hit the Start button for the Web API and SMTP Relay option.

Under the Web API and SMTP Relay option, click the Start button

On the next screen, select the SMTP Relay option.

Select the SMTP Relay option

Next, you need to enter a name for your API key and hit the "Create Key" button.

Name your API key in SendGrid and click the Create Key button

You will then see your API key.

Next, open your WordPress administrator in a separate tab and go to WP Mail SMTP »Settings. You should have already selected SendGrid for your mailer. If not, choose it now.

At the bottom of the screen you will see a field for entering your SendGrid API key. Just copy and paste it here. Then click the "Save Settings" button.

Enter your API from SendGrid into your WP Mail SMTP settings

Next, you need to verify that your integration is working. First, switch to the Email Test tab in your WP Mail SMTP Settings. Then enter your email address and click the Send Email button.

Send a test email from WP Mail SMTP

You should see a message that the test email was sent successfully. You can check it in your inbox too.

After your test email is sent successfully, return to the tab with your SendGrid API page. Select the "I updated my settings" check box. Then click the "Next: Check integration" button.

Check the box to indicate that you have updated your settings, then click the button to verify

On the next screen, click the Check Integration button.

You should then see this message.

The success message in SendGrid

Next, you should create and authenticate a subdomain to improve the deliverability of your email.

Tip: If you cannot create and authenticate your subdomain, the emails will still be deleted from your website. However, there is a chance that some emails will not be sent to their recipients.

Create a subdomain for use with SendGrid

Now you need to create a subdomain on your website e.g. B. so called YourDomain.com.

To create a subdomain, log into your web hosting account and follow the instructions to add a subdomain. If you are using Bluehost you have to go to one Domains »Subdomains Page.

Adding a subdomain in Bluehost

We recommend using sg.yourdomain.com for your subdomain.

After you've created the subdomain, you'll need to add it to your SendGrid account.

To do this, you have to go to Settings »Sender Authentication Page in your SendGrid account. Click the Get Started button under Authenticate Your Domain.

The Sender Authentication page in SendGrid

Now you should choose your DNS host. This is your website host unless your domain name is registered with another company.

In the second step, select “Yes” for “Would you like to brand the links for this domain too?”. This means that your email is coming from your domain, not SendGrid.

Then just click the Next button.

Select your DNS host in SendGrid

Now enter your domain in the field "Domain you are sending from". Click on the "Advanced Settings" link below. This opens up new possibilities.

You need to clear the Use Automated Security check box and check the Use Custom Return Path box. Geben Sie dann den ersten Teil Ihrer Subdomain für den "Rückweg" ein. Wenn Ihre Subdomain beispielsweise sg.example.com lautet, geben Sie sg ein.

Klicken Sie anschließend auf die Schaltfläche "Weiter".

Geben Sie Ihre From-Domain und Ihren benutzerdefinierten Rückgabepfad ein

Jetzt sehen Sie einige DNS-Einträge, die Sie Ihrer Domain hinzufügen müssen. Hierzu können Sie die Dokumentation Ihres Webhosts konsultieren.

Abrufen Ihrer DNS-Einträge von Sendgrid

Nachdem Sie die Datensätze hinzugefügt haben, klicken Sie unten auf dem Bildschirm auf die Schaltfläche "Überprüfen". Sie sollten dann eine Erfolgsmeldung sehen.

Testen Sie abschließend Ihre SMTP-E-Mail erneut, um sicherzustellen, dass die E-Mails korrekt gesendet werden.

Testen, ob Ihre SMTP-Mail funktioniert

Der letzte Schritt für all diese Methoden besteht darin, eine Test-E-Mail zu senden, um sicherzustellen, dass alles funktioniert.

Wechseln Sie zunächst in den WP Mail SMTP-Einstellungen zur Registerkarte "E-Mail-Test". Geben Sie dann die E-Mail-Adresse ein, an die die Test-E-Mail gesendet werden soll, sofern sie von der Standardadresse abweicht.

Klicken Sie einfach auf die Schaltfläche "E-Mail senden" und Ihre E-Mail wird gesendet. Sie sollten eine Nachricht sehen, die Sie darüber informiert, dass die E-Mail erfolgreich gesendet wurde.

Senden eines E-Mail-Tests von WP Mail SMTP, um zu überprüfen, ob alles korrekt eingerichtet ist

Überprüfen Sie anschließend Ihren Posteingang, um sicherzustellen, dass die Test-E-Mail eingetroffen ist.

Die Test-E-Mail von WP Mail SMTP in unserem Posteingang

Andere kostenlose SMTP-Mailer-Optionen

Es gibt einige andere kostenlose SMTP-Mailer-Optionen, die Sie anstelle der von uns behandelten verwenden können.

  • Ausblick: Dies erfordert einen längeren Einrichtungsprozess als einige andere Methoden. Der Vorteil besteht jedoch darin, dass Sie eine Menge E-Mails senden können (bis zu 10.000 pro Minute).
  • Amazon SES: Dieser Service wird nur empfohlen, wenn Sie mit der Technologie vertraut sind, da die Einrichtung recht komplex ist. Es ist kostenlos für Ihr erstes Jahr.
  • SMTP.com: Dies ist eine robuste und zuverlässige Option. Der Nachteil ist, dass es nur für Ihre ersten 30 Tage kostenlos ist, dann müssen Sie bezahlen, um es zu nutzen.

Für all dies erhalten Sie Anweisungen, indem Sie den Mailer auf Ihrer WP Mail SMTP-Einstellungsseite auswählen und dann auf den Dokumentationslink klicken. Dies öffnet Anweisungen in einer neuen Registerkarte.

Der Dokumentationslink zum Einrichten von Outlook in WP Mail SMTP

Wir hoffen, dieser Artikel hat Ihnen geholfen, zu lernen, wie Sie einen kostenlosen SMTP-Server zum Senden von WordPress-E-Mails verwenden. Vielleicht möchten Sie auch unsere Artikel über die besten E-Mail-Marketing-Services und unseren Vergleich der besten Apps für virtuelle Geschäftstelefonnummern (mit kostenlosen Optionen) lesen.

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