With the right email hosting, you can personalise your email with your domain. Getting a professional email address (such as a business email or a personalised email for individual use) can help businesses and personal branding in a number of ways, but what do we mean by a custom email address?

What is a custom email address?

When communicating with businesses online, you might notice that their email address is different from the personal addresses you use – like sales@fasthosts.co.uk. With a custom email address, the section that once referred to your email provider, such as Gmail or Outlook, is replaced. This can be replaced with anything of your choice, but many will use this as a way to include their company name in their email.

This part after the ‘@’ and before the domain extension in your email is called your email domain. You can choose any email domain you want, but most brands use their company name for brand visibility and consistency. To do this, you’ll first need to buy a domain name for your business’s website so you can establish a consistent online presence.

How to get a business email address: email hosting

So how do you use your own custom email address? You need a mail server to deliver and accept emails, and you can get this through an email hosting plan.

When you rent a mail server from an email hosting provider like us, this allows you to set up your custom email addresses and start sending emails. While you focus on email administration, your email hosting provider will take care of all the technical aspects, such as email routing, email filtering and security.

Why use a custom email address?

The reality is, a personal, professional email address is not something reserved just for businesses. Anyone can set up their own custom email address and instantly become more reputable on the web. And users actually prefer to see you with your own custom email for a number of reasons, which we’ll dive into below:

1. Customer trust

Firstly, having a custom email address gives users the confidence that they’re contacting the right people. This reinforces the legitimacy of your email address and improves trust.

2. Professionalism

Secondly, a custom email looks a lot more professional and trustworthy, especially compared to a free and generic email domain like @gmail. Build your personal or professional brand with the help of a custom email address.

3. Brand visibility

Whether you’re creating a business email or an email address for your personal brand, this is a great marketing strategy for improving brand visibility. Every time someone receives an email with your unique domain, this reinforces the image and reputation of your brand, making it much more memorable.

4. Security

Unlike generic, free email domains, paid custom addresses offer more security features that protect your brand. For example, you’ll be less vulnerable to potentially costly data breaches and will benefit from enhanced encryptions.

5. Avoiding spam

With the higher brand visibility and recognition that comes with using a custom email address, customers will be less likely to accidentally mark your emails as spam. This can result in a higher email open rate and potentially more conversions.

6. Consistency

Using a custom email domain gives your brand more consistency across all channels. You can create multiple emails for different departments, including support, sales and careers, so customers always know how to get in touch with you.

Setting up a custom email address

So, how can you create your own custom email address for your business or for personal use? Let us walk you through the steps:

Step 1: Get a domain

The domain name you choose will depend on what you want to use it for. If you want to start a business, you should pick a name to reflect the brand or industry of the business. Already got an ecommerce or business website? Your email domain and website domain should be the same to avoid confusion among your customers. If you’re setting up a personal brand instead, try to come up with something short, memorable and eye-catching.

You’ll need to make a decision on both the part before the dot, and after. The part of the domain after the dot is called a domain extension, or top-level domain (TLD).

Domain extensions

The most popular and recognisable domain extension is .com, so if you intend for your business to be globally available, securing a .com domain name is advised.

However, being the most common, this means that many of the more memorable .com domains have already been registered. You don’t need to rule out or change your business name because of this – simply try out some alternative TLDs.

For example, .uk domains are for UK companies, so if you’re based primarily in the UK, using a .co.uk domain is often better, with more specific extensions like .scot domains ideal for local businesses. But if your business is more global, there are plenty of other gTLDs for alternative extensions, including:

  • .net – great for networking or IT businesses
  • .co – used by a lot of tech startups
  • .shop – perfect for ecommerce businesses

Struggling to decide? Check out our article on .org vs .com vs .net domain names to decide which of these popular gTLDs would be right for you.

But what if you don’t have a business at all? As we mentioned, you can have a personal email address regardless. Whether you’re a freelancer who wants to communicate better with their clients, or a professional who wants to represent themselves to prospective employers, having a personal email address will help you do just that. Nothing’s stopping you from registering a .com email, but why not be more specific? These new TLDs could be just what you’re looking for:

  • A .name domain is specifically designed for individuals to register their name as a domain. This extension is perfect if you want to represent yourself online.
  • A .me domain name is another popular choice for individual domains. It’s a little snappier than .name, and still clearly states what it represents.

Step 2: Choose an email provider

Once you’ve registered your domain, you’ll need to find an email provider which supports the use of a personalised email address. These options are almost always paid, but with services like our Email Hosting packages, the cost is negligible for the value of having a personal, professional email address.

Using a paid email provider over a freemail site like Gmail comes with other benefits too. If you’re using a paid service, you won’t be on the same platform as bots, spammers, and malicious users. This can help to prevent your emails to clients or colleagues being lost in their spam folders.

Step 3: Set up your mailbox

Now you’ve registered a domain and found an email provider, it’s time to set up your custom email address.

If you’ve chosen to register your domain with Fasthosts, setting up your mailbox is simple. Just head into your Control Panel, and click on ‘Domain Names’ on the left side. Click on the domain you want to use for your email in the list, then go to the ‘Email’ tab and click ‘Add a mailbox’.

You’ll be shown some fields which you can fill out to set up your email account. The first field lets you choose what you would like your custom email address to be. This depends on what you would like to use the email for, but there are a number of options that are picked most often.

  • me@yourdomain.com – if you’re representing yourself as an individual and want your custom email address to be a point of contact for you, putting just the word ‘me’ before the @ symbol is a memorable way of showing this.
  • info@yourdomain.com – this one does what it says on the tin, and can be a great way for people to get information about you. It’s also a good address to send email from, as it adds a layer of credibility to the information you’re sending out.
  • biz@yourdomain.com – this is a great domain to use to discuss jobs, business, or other commercial opportunities.

Unlike a free email account, what’s before the @ symbol can be whatever you like, as only you are using your domain name – so you can set it to whatever you want!

Frequently asked questions about custom email addresses

Can I get a free custom email address?

You may be able to get free email hosting included with your existing web hosting or website builder plan – with a bundle like this, you could save a lot of money on your business startup costs. However, many standalone email hosting services are extremely affordable.

How do I create a good personal email address?

The key to creating a good email address is to make it straightforward and memorable. This will make it easier for both you and other people to remember your address and type it in correctly. Businesses should use their website domain name to market their brand and ensure consistency across all channels.

What domain extension should I choose?

Although most people choose .com since it’s extremely popular and easy to remember, this domain extension doesn’t have great availability. If you can’t get your chosen domain with a .com extension, why not try .org or .net? These are great gTLDs for non-profit organisations and tech companies. Or, if you want to be a bit more unique, you can see if you can find an industry-specific TLD for your brand (such as .art or .beer).

Why do I need a custom email address?

Using a custom email address instead of a generic one is a great way to market your brand, whether you’re trying to establish a personal or you’re running a business. Your unique email domain will boost brand visibility, consistency and professionalism.

How do I create a professional email?

If you want to create a professional email that sends the right message to customers (whether this is a professional business email or a personalised email for your individual use), it’s important to bear a few general rules in mind. As mentioned earlier, a good email address is straightforward and memorable, allowing users to easily recognise it and type it correctly. It should also match your web domain if you have one so that your online branding remains consistent.

In addition, you should stick to full names and avoid nicknames – this will make you seem more professional, legitimate and trustworthy. Avoiding numbers and symbols will also help to create this professional image, although you can use full stops and underscores sparingly if you need to create a unique address. You should also avoid using your job title in case it changes in the future, and instead you can add your initials if your full name is too generic (such as johnfsmith@domain.com).

Once you’ve set up your Fasthosts mail account, you can either access your mailbox through your browser on our webmail service, or you can follow our handy guide to find out how you can set up your new personal email address on popular clients.

Check out our Email Hosting packages to find one that’s right for you, and discover how to transfer your Email Hosting on our helpful blog. Get started using your custom email address today by contacting our sales team.