If you’re starting a business or upgrading an in-house email solution to the cloud, how do you choose an email provider? For most, the choice is Gmail or Outlook. They’re the industry standards because they’re developed by Google and Microsoft, respectively.
These power-house companies have the resources to support an email service suitable for business use. Both platforms are reliable, secure, and user-friendly. That’s more than you can say for an in-house, or website hosting email server.
Why You Should Have a Third-Party Email Provider
If you’ve been in business for a long time, you might be using an in-house or website hosting provider email solution. While it may have been your best option at the time, today it’s a liability for your business. Here are the issues:
- They’re difficult to maintain
- Security is lacking so they’re targeted by hackers and viruses
- Storage is limiting so you have to keep up with backups
- Using email on mobile devices can be a complex process
Outsourcing your email to a larger company solves all of these issues at a low cost per user. So how do you choose one?
Gmail and Outlook Compared
Both platforms feature cutting-edge security so your emails won’t be stolen or intercepted for information. In each case, Transport Layer Security (TLS) encryption protects the connection between sender and receiver.
With Gmail, you can send confidential emails that require a passcode to read. Options to copy, paste, download, print, and forward the message text and attachments will be disabled. You can also set a time for the email and content to expire and the recipient will no longer be able to access it.
On Outlook, you have similar encryption options plus a benefit where messages encrypted with Outlook stay encrypted and remain inside Microsoft 365. This helps secure your email when it’s received.
Microsoft and Google guarantee 99.9% uptime for their services.
Contacts and Calendars
Gmail and Outlook allow you to create calendar events from your email. Gmail syncs with Google Calendar, included in G Suite.
Outlook’s calendar function is built in., and integrates your email contacts with your calendar. This saves time booking meetings because your contacts appear when you create an invite.
For Gmail on your desktop, you’ll use your web browser like Chrome or Edge. On mobile you’ll use the Gmail app to access your inbox on the go.
If you prefer desktop apps over browser ones, Outlook has a dedicated desktop app and a mobile app.
When to Choose One Over the Other
Most of the points we’ve covered so far have been very even between the two platforms. That’s because they are both solid choices for any business.
One of the key differentiators to use when deciding between the two platforms is how entrenched your business is with the Microsoft suite. If everyone in your company uses Outlook already, it probably makes sense to go with Microsoft 365’s email solution.
If you have a tech-savvy team that doesn’t mind change, and prefers to work in a web browser instead of desktop applications, G-Suite and Gmail are a great choice. If you have a few employees that still want to use Outlook on their computer, it’s still possible with Gmail.
At the end of the day, both solutions will feel familiar after a little use, so it’s hard to go wrong.
Still need help deciding?
Even though video calling and instant messaging are working their way into professional communications, email is still the digital standard you and your customers depend on. Tell us about your business at [email protected] and we’ll make a recommendation.