If you are hosting your email on your WordPress hosting server, you might be pulling emails from the server to another email client such as Gmail, Outlook or Yahoo.
This is very common because no one wants to be logging in to their server just to check and respond to emails.
When your email client pulls emails from your server, there are two different methods and they might affect how you manage your emails.
Today I am going to show you the difference between IMAP and POP email pulling.
Choosing Between IMAP & POP – 3 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself
When your email clients pull emails from your email server, it can do it in one of two ways: by using POP (post office protocol) or IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol).
There are a couple of things you need to consider before choosing IMAP or POP:
- Where do you check email?
POP will save your email in the email client on the device where you check it only. So, if you check your email using POP on your phone, then your phone will store that email using your phone’s memory.
IMAP will save your email on the email server (e.g. using your cPanel and hosting storage). That means that wherever you check your email, you will need an internet connection or you will need to enable offline mode for your email client. Basically, you need an internet connection.
- How much email storage do you need?
POP will save your email using your device’s memory. This means that if you check email on your PC or Mac, it will use your computer’s memory. If you check it on your phone or tablet, it will use your phone or tablet’s memory. In addition, since they are downloaded separately by each device, you will see duplicate of the same email in your email client.
IMAP will save your email using your server’s memory. This means that when you check your email, you will need an internet connection, which shouldn’t be a problem nowadays. Since you are accessing the email from your server’s memory, there shouldn’t be any duplicates created.
- Syncing actions across email.
POP will save your email for the first time on each device. That means that any changes you make to the email will only be reflected on that device. If you want your changes to reflect across all devices, don’t use POP. If you only check email on one device, then using POP should be fine.
IMAP will save your email on the server. Every change made to the email will reflect on all devices. You will need an internet connection to check emails using IMAP.
So there you have it. You can choose between IMAP and POP by asking yourself the above questions.
Generally, IMAP is the better way to handle email since most email is handled just like IMAP nowadays – where the email is stored on a server and you can check the email from anywhere as long as you have an internet connection. All changes to the email will also reflect across all devices.
Which one do you prefer – IMAP or POP?
Comment below so you can share your experience with fellow hospitality professionals.