sending emails

Almost from the moment it was released, Gmail has been widely used. The email service offers a user-friendly interface, helpful features, and Gmail extensions for everything. Currently, Gmail has the most users worldwide and it’s growing every day.

gmail

However, like all products, Gmail has some weaknesses. The fact that Gmail is so popular might even be considered a disadvantage. After all, you're giving your personal information to a large corporation.

So, if you’re in need of an alternative to Gmail, we've got you covered. Let’s take a look at the best Gmail alternatives in 2022 that you should check out.

Is Gmail good for freelancers?

Email is a huge part of our freelancing lives–for work and personal communication. Gmail is great for freelancers of all aspects. And, in essence, it’s possible to optimize email like all work processes that consume a lot of our time. 

using gmail

Email marketing freelancers can benefit from learning how to use Gmail better since it’s one of the most popular mobile apps available, with over 1.8 billion users. At the end of 2020 and 2021, Gmail owned 43% of the market share for email service providers.

So, why do people consider Gmail alternatives?

Moving to other email providers has some legitimate benefits. For example, user interfaces can be tailored according to personal preferences or privacy concerns.

In addition, switching to a Gmail alternative might also be motivated by a desire for certain features not offered by Gmail. User interfaces are another factor that cause some users to switch to another platform.

10 Gmail alternatives that you might consider switching to

There are many Gmail alternatives that you can choose from. Each one has different features from the next, so Gmail users need to ensure they check out what they offer first before they switch over to a new email account. 

1. Maildrop

maildrop

Do you hate spam? Of course you do, and so do we! Luckily, you can prevent spam with this email provider.

To avoid spam, or if you want to subscribe to a website or forum that isn't entirely reliable, it’s one of the best ways to create a fake email address. With this service, you can customize your email address or take those suggested from the service.

MailDrop has the disadvantage of only storing ten messages at a time. Then again, who wants to have an inbox full of old messages? Suddenly, you check your inbox and have 700 messages you have to file through and delete. Ah, fun times! When you look at it that way, storing ten messages just means your inbox will stay organized. And you can use this email service without registering, which is one of the most exciting aspects of it.

It’s very easy to use Mailbox. Simply type in any name you want to create a disposable email account.

An alias ensures that you alone can access mail coming in. Open inboxes don't require passwords or accounts, so anyone can access your inbox. Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to log in to e-commerce websites with it.

2. AOL Mail

aol.com

It's a free account offered by Verizon Communications' AOL email providers. That’s the word we love to hear, ‘it’s free.’ It has an intuitive account interface and mobile apps. This allows you to access your inbox from anywhere, no matter what device you’re using. You can also use it to manage your AOL Calendar, making it a great alternative to Gmail. Email list views can be customized. And with AOL Mail, you can organize your email account more effectively.

With the panel, you can focus on what you need to do. The themes available on the webmail interface can be used to customize its appearance. Who doesn’t love the ability to personalize our things including our email account? Make it pretty, make it colorful, the possibilities are endless. Hotmail and Gmail providers may have themes that are more extensive, but these themes save you from having to look at the same color scheme and images every time!

AOL filters are a great way to save time and money. If you haven't used them yet, this is a missed opportunity. With this secure email service, messages can be automatically sorted into folders by filters. All the popular Gmail alternatives and programs have this feature.

3. Tutanota

tutanota

With Tutanota, you can securely send and receive emails, adding to its suitability as a Gmail alternative. In 2011, it was launched in Germany, and today, it has millions of subscribers worldwide.

This secure email service is open-source, so the source code can be easily checked on GitHub. As a result, the company now has more transparency and security, particularly since advertisements are no longer an option.

As a result, the email service relies on donations from users and subscriptions from premium users to provide revenue. This indicates the company doesn't sell user information to third parties. It's reassuring to know your information is safe and secure. 

International activists and journalists have become increasingly dependent on Gmail alternatives when protecting privacy and handling sensitive information. For example, organizations prefer private and secure communication over the internet. Among the best and safest alternatives to Gmail, Tutanota offers these benefits. 

When you register for an email account, you will receive 1 GB of free storage space, a free offer for first-time users. Compressing your emails will give you a free service storage boost of up to 10 GB of end-to-end encryption with no ads and high security. Unfortunately, this email service requires you to upgrade for a bigger, better email service.

4. Runbox email service

runbox email service

Do you like to be eco-friendly? Here is an email provider that’s sustainability-oriented. It doesn't get better than that. Runbox offers a similar level of privacy and security features as Posteo. Hydroelectricity is 100% certified renewable and used to power Runbox.

Runbox was founded in Norway, where privacy laws impose strict restrictions. In addition to these legal protections, it also features a strong encryption system. Though it has feature-rich encryption, unfortunately, Runbox is not a free email service. Prices begin at $19.95 per month. Expensive, huh? While it might seem like that, it does offer good encryption and hydroelectricity. 

Hosting services such as email service, web hosting, and domain hosting can all be accessed from the same easy-to-use interface. No more running around to different interfaces, things just got simpler. With Runbox, you can manage your online presence and communication in an easy-to-use, secure email service application.

Using any client, you can access your email account securely via WAP, Web, SMTP, POP3, IMAP, and more. No matter how you access your email service, whether you use an Outlook program on your PC, Thunderbird, or Mac, you can use Runbox.

5. Mail.com

mail.com

An oldie but a good one! As one of the oldest Gmail alternatives in the industry, Mail.com provides many personalized features. This is because you can select from various custom domains, so don't limit yourself to @mail.com domains. There are also fun options that can help you reflect your personality through a custom email address. You can create different folders for different categories such as bills, friends, and work. Just another way you can be more organized! No more clutter in your inbox.

Many users will be happy with the free plan, but a paid plan is available if you need more features, such as POP3 support for sending emails from other apps. File storage on mail.com is also limited to 2 GB. However, if you're only going to exchange messages, you can have some fun with the domain names. 

There are plenty of domain names, a spam filter, and an attachment limit of 30 MB. Unfortunately, there is no POP3 support on the free email service plan, and you are limited to 2 GB.

6. Yahoo Mail

yahoo mail

Despite its long history, Yahoo Mail has some advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, it’s an extremely easy-to-use email service. You can get as close as possible to Gmail's interface, which is great for sending quick emails. It’s also possible to customize the interface in several different ways. You can also send attachments of up to 100 MB using Yahoo Mail, a remarkable feature.

Spam is where Yahoo mail falls short. Since the service is older and its spam filters aren't that good, spam will probably be a problem. However, it’s still very easy to use, despite that. People enjoy the customization features this one offers and its easy-to-use interface. Unfortunately, it’s loaded with ads and spam. 

Your inbox can now be customized from the front-facing side. A light, medium, or dark theme can be selected under settings. Do you like to message late at night? Switch to dark mode and make it easier on the eyes. Message layout and inbox sizes can be modified as well. In addition, Yahoo Mail now allows you to customize the look of your out-of-office reply, one of the most talked-about new features.

Select Settings > More Settings to access this feature. Then, on the left side pane, turn on the Vacation response.

7. Global Mail Exchange

global mail exchange

Global Mail Exchange was created in 1997 as one of the secure alternatives to Gmail. The email service offers time-tested and superior email services. 

TLS/SSL encryption is used by the company, similar to Gmail. Despite this, the service does not scan email keywords and does not advertise with the data. With more than 11 million monthly customers, it is one of Gmail's top competitors.

A GMX email account comes with a calendar, anti-virus software, and anti-spam protection. GMX accounts also include 65 GB of storage space and a maximum attachment size of 50 MB, so if you need more space, this email service is worth checking out.

It’s possible to create multiple GMX accounts, and it’s a safe and reliable email account. It offers a built-in address book and the option to sign up for ten different accounts. Got a work email and personal? Perfect! With multiple accounts, everything can be separated.

Unfortunately, there is no two-factor authentication for added protection, and the user-friendly options are not up to standard.

8. Mailfence

mailfence

Gmail users might not think of Mailfence as a Gmail alternative, but it is ad-free and is considered a secure email service. Email providers that offer similar features to Gmail are an alternative, right? Well, yes but unfortunately, there is only 500 MB of storage space available in Mailfence's free version, a limitation that may frustrate some users.

It’s pretty affordable to subscribe to Mailfence's paid plans. Don't have the full payment upfront? The good news is you can pay monthly. How good is that? Several features are also included in the email service, such as importing contacts, editing documents, and creating calendar events.

9. iCloud Mail: Best for IOS users

Icloud mail

Are you a Mac or iPhone user? I guess most people are now, as we try to keep up with technology. Many of the services you sign up for require an iCloud email service address. Regarding domain names, iCloud.com might not be the most appealing, but it's a free option. Appearance doesn't always matter when you're saving money, right?

It’s easy to use because it mimics the Gmail interface. If you're switching from Gmail, at least it won't feel so overwhelming for you. Well, hopefully not! You can see this in its functionality, but it also offers strong encryption.

The free iCloud storage is only 5 GB, but that's pretty decent for free storage. There are no complicated settings to worry about for all of your Apple devices. And this tool can switch between email providers if you own an Apple device.

10. Zoho Mail

zoho mail

There is a strong focus on this platform being used in the workplace, but it’s not limited to corporate use; you can use it however you wish.

Founded in 1999, Zoho Corporation pioneered online collaborative work; the software is integrated with calendars, instant messengers, and task managers. However, despite its features, it is easy to use and takes security seriously. A provider that seems to boast everything sounds like a winner.

You can, however, configure new emails with free extensions as part of the personal version, which is free. Zoho Mail also has an easy-to-use interface.

Owning a server for email

A final option is to host your own email server. That's a brave choice if you're contemplating it. Hosting an email server with at least a basic understanding of Linux, PC hardware, and server software can be a challenging task.

Among the services available is Mail-in-a-Box, which allows you to set up your own email server without worrying about technical requirements.

mail-in-a-box

Despite Mail-in-a-Box automating much of the procedure, it still takes a long time, and that's not even counting the time spent building the computer server.

Online privacy, innovation, and decentralization should be promoted. It has automated, auditable, and idempotent system configuration. It is technically possible to create a digital Fort Knox for email, but it should only be attempted by experienced users. If you weren't looking to set up your very own email server in the first place, it’s best to forget about this one and leave it to the professionals.

Choosing the best Gmail alternatives

In selecting email providers, here are the top considerations to take into account when looking for the best Gmail alternatives.

Having a good reputation: Your email service provider must have an excellent reputation.

Message archiving capabilities: Email providers should allow you to archive, save, and search messages. These features are what we all want to keep organized, right?

Strong security measures: Research the security measures offered by any email provider before choosing. Your message will be kept safe, and your email service will be protected from unauthorized access.

Software integration: Email services can be integrated with other business software. For instance, productivity software and calendar applications. Use email packages that integrate such tools if your business relies on them.

Anti-spam filter: Don't spend your time reading spam messages. Spam can be detected and filtered out with an email service. Ah! Finally a feature we all agree is a must have. 

Service reliability: Email services should be available when you need them. Customers may be dissatisfied or lose business if their email goes down.

Aspects of storage: Keep your account's storage space in mind as you choose your email service.

User-friendly: As your freelance business grows, every employee needs an email account. It’s important to choose a provider that is easy to use to reduce training costs. You also want the service to have mobile apps, as it's easier and quicker to access your mail.

In-depth features: Choose from various sophisticated functions, such as scheduling tasks or recalling messages.


Want to look more professional in your work?

Use Indy’s full set of freelance tools to make your proposals, contracts, invoices, and projects look and work more professional.

Try Indy for free

What to look for in an alternative email provider

These are the more complex additions that are important. Want to know more? Follow on! We're just getting started.

Gmail cannot be replaced exactly by another email service. So, we looked for several characteristics that would give most of the benefits of Gmail but with better privacy.

sending an email

Standards for deliverability: All emails sent to users are scanned before they are delivered by Internet Service Providers. Hmm is that a good thing? It actually is! Your email will not pass through if the IP address you use for sending emails is blacklisted. In order to ensure that ESPs provide you with good deliverability, make sure that they use trusted authentication methods like SenderID, SPF, DKIM, and DomainKeys.

Ensure that you have a dedicated IP, as this prevents you from being blocked when spam has been sent through the IP you share with others. Obtain information about whitelisting and feedback loops and other reputation support options.

Email API integration:  An email API provides access to features provided by an email service provider's platform, such as the ability to build a draft, make changes to templates, send transactional emails, and move or edit folders.

Email campaign performance is continuously improved by integrating API integrations. The process requires third-party applications/plug-ins to monitor certain metrics not provided by your ESP. If you use API integration tools to conduct analysis, you should check whether your email service provider supports that.

Scalability: With 2,000 subscribers on your mailing list, you decide to go with the free service. But can your service handle it once your list reaches over 20,000? In your plan, can you add more users? 

Customer support: Let's say you scheduled an early morning email campaign, but because the ESP's server was down, the campaign could not be delivered. Is your email provider available at all hours to assist customers? Examine the frequency and pattern of downtime, and find out how the ESP handles downtime emergencies. Customer support is important, especially if technology goes way over your head. Don’t worry, you're not the only one.

Ease-to-use: How easy is it to use the specified features? Can you easily access the FAQ section? Is customer support responsive? Can you operate the platform without technical knowledge? Is digital hand-holding provided by your ESP?

The possibility of migration: Some relations last forever, and some end prematurely. If the ESP you are using no longer meets your requirements, is it possible to export your data as soon as possible?  

All these questions are important to ask to ensure you get everything possible out of your Gmail alternative.

Should I use a browser-based email?

A decision that is up to you, but read on if you're interested in learning more.

The majority of email clients are browser-based. By doing this, you won't have to install a separate email client, and you'll always be up to date because your email client will be updated every time you use it.

It’s important to note that vulnerability issues still exist, regardless of your browser's security features. Various methods can be used to attack the encryption libraries used by web browsers. Email services, however, are aware of the vulnerabilities and have taken steps to avoid them.

sending an email

What are your options now? Use a standalone email service client or a mobile app if your email provider provides a browser-based email in addition to desktop email applications and mobile apps. Whenever possible, do not use the browser-based Gmail alternatives.

Mobile apps and standalone email clients are usually safer than in-browser clients.

If you want to be secure, no matter which email service you use, use a high-quality VPN like Surfshark or NordVPN. A VPN's ad-blocking option in both services will block advertisements, malicious software, and phishing websites. As a result, some of the most dangerous attacks may not even reach your browser if you use them.

Truly private messages with end-to-end (E2E) encryption. Is it important?

An end-to-end encryption system ensures your email communications have the highest level of privacy. As a result of E2E encryption, all communication is encrypted on your device before it is sent. The recipient is the only one who can decrypt them. Despite passing through your email provider's servers, they cannot be decrypted by the service.

You can't crack the encryption on your emails unless you use an encryption algorithm used by your email provider. In some services, Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) is still used as an encryption standard. Despite some reports a few years ago, to the contrary, it is secure. Third-party implementation of PGP was the cause of those reports. We know that none of the problems were related to email service provider suggestions.

A method like this for end-to-end encryption is essential in today's world since even the government of the United States is vulnerable to cyberattacks.

Over the last few years, PGP has been superseded by OpenPGP, which is like an open-source version of PGP. It can be used by any email provider. There are no known attacks against OpenPGP. 

Despite this, there are some disadvantages as well. It’s to be expected there are downfalls in everything, wouldn’t you agree?

The first issue is that neither PGP nor OpenPGP encrypts email subject lines or recipient and sender addresses. Despite not being able to read the contents of your email messages, information regarding your emails is valuable. It’s still quite valuable for intel gathering to know what the subject lines of all your emails are titled and to whom they are addressed. It is, therefore, not ideal that PGP and OpenPGP have this feature.

In addition, encrypted email messages are not widely accepted or available. Unless each party uses an email service with automatic encryption, you will have to create and manage PGP keys, encrypt/decrypt messages, etc. As a result, unless both users use an email provider capable of handling PGP automatically, most people aren't willing to deal with the encryption. 

In some cases, the encryption of messages is not performed using PGP or OpenPGP. They both have their advantages and disadvantages.

FAQs     

Does Gmail offer the best email service?

You'll have to decide what you're looking for in the alternatives to Gmail features. If you are having trouble figuring it out, write a list. Sit back, relax, and write down what’s important and what isn’t. It sounds annoying and, yes, you’re groaning at the thought. But, don’t worry, it will make the job easier. Among all the email services available today, Gmail is by far the most popular. Besides offering a lot of space, their email service provides various features. They are, however, among the worst in terms of privacy.

Which alternatives to Gmail are the most secure?

Using secure email services is safe, as encryption is used, privacy is protected, and ads are not shown to you. However, the combination of the two usually entails a fee for the service. Therefore, any service that meets this criterion would be a safe mailbox. This is important when looking for alternatives to Gmail.

Are anonymous Gmail accounts possible?

By design, Gmail does not provide anonymous access. Users have been given more choices in terms of sharing information over the years. Their primary source of revenue, however, is advertising. Your email service account is included in this.

When I change my email service, can I keep my Gmail messages?

It's possible. You can import them into the new email service with some work. You will need to ensure that the service you choose offers imported messages.

Final thoughts

The best Gmail alternatives aren't easy to find. Luckily, the best alternatives are right here to help make your decision easier. No email service provider can compare with Gmail in terms of features. Therefore, you need to determine which of the features in Gmail you need and then find a similar service. 

Check out some of the alternatives to Gmail we've presented to you. Each has pros and cons compared to Gmail's email service. You could use any of them to replace Gmail based on your preferences and the features you require from the new provider.

Even though finding the right alternative to Gmail is challenging, this article should help you narrow down your choices.

However, a good email provider isn’t the only thing freelancers need to manage clients and projects. You’ll need a strong project management software to go along with it. 

Indy gives you all the productivity tools you need to manage your business from beginning to end. Generate new leads and onboard clients with business proposals, contracts, forms, and invoice templates, keep track of to-dos with task management, manage your time with automatic time tracking, and more project management tools that help you take full control of your business. Get started today for free!