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September 9, 2020

WordPress SMTP Confirmation Emails

When a customer shows interest in something by submitting their information or purchasing, they most likely are expecting confirmation that their submission or order was placed.

Usually, you can confirm their submission or order by leading them to a confirmation page after submission or order.

However that may not be enough, and the more confirmation you give the better. You can also email them a confirmation such as a receipt.

But on WordPress sometimes, emails don’t get sent.

Today I am going to show you how to guarantee that your emails get sent from WordPress.

Why Don’t Emails Get Sent From WordPress?

WordPress uses a coding language called PHP. PHP is a great language for websites, but not so great when it comes to sending emails.

The reason why it is not great for sending emails is because Email servers such as Gmail and Yahoo have a filter.

For some reason, PHP doesn’t pass through the filters well and any email sent via PHP almost never makes it to any email inbox, including spam or other folders.

So what can you do to get your emails to send if WordPress uses PHP?

Implement SMTP

Luckily, WordPress is an open source platform where many other developers can modify WordPress to work with other languages and technologies.

One of those technologies is SMTP, which stands for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. It is the same technology that most email providers such as Gmail and Yahoo use. It uses trustworthy authentication which Gmail and Yahoo accept through their email filters.

Let’s get SMTP set up for your WordPress website.

First, you want to install the plugin: Post SMTP. Search for it, install it and activate it.

There are many WordPress SMTP plugins but I like using this one the best because it has an email log feature which is usually a premium feature of all the other WordPress SMTP plugins.

When you’re done activating it, go to the Post SMTP plugin settings by clicking on “Post SMTP” on the left side.

When you are in the Post SMTP settings, you can click on the “Start the Wizard” button. The plugin will then take you through the steps you need to complete in order to make sure that SMTP is working.

In the first step, it will ask you to input your email address and the name that you want to show as the “From” name.

Then you can click next. And now it will ask you for the Outgoing Mail Server Hostname. 

This is where you need to choose the best option for your current email setup:

  1. Default
  2. SMTP
  3. Gmail
  4. Mandrill
  5. SendGrid
  6. Mailgun

The default option uses WordPress’s default PHP mailer. You don’t want to use this.

The other options all use SMTP or SMTP via API (API stands for application programming interface which helps two applications send information to each other). So if you use Gmail, Mandrill, SendGrid or Mailgun, you will be sending emails via those applications.

Let’s go through these options one by one.

If you host your email via WordPress hosting or cPanel, then you want to use SMTP. This options sends email from your email outbox just as if you were to compose an email yourself.

Most hosts such as A2 Hosting and Siteground have email included in WordPress hosting. If you use one of those two hosts, you can use the SMTP option.

If you host your email with Google through Gsuite, you should use the Gmail option. 

Using Gmail API

Let’s go through how to use your Gsuite email account to send emails from WordPress.

For most Gsuite email accounts, your outgoing mail hostname should be smtp.gmail.com. If it isn’t already autofilled for you, you can type that in there.

Then, they will give you a list of options on how the email will be sent. You can choose between the Gmail API or between different gmail SMTP ports.

You can choose the Gmail with port 587.

Click next and the last step would be to enter your Gsuite Client ID with Client Secret. You can get these credentials by going to the Google API Console: https://console.developers.google.com/start/api?id=gmail

Google API Credentials

Once you click on that link, you may be asked to sign in to your Gsuite account. Once you do, you should see a screen where you can create a project.

Once there, create a project and you can name it Postman SMTP. After you create the project, click on Go to credentials. Then click on client ID.

Go ahead and create your credentials, then use OAuth client ID. Create a client ID using Web application and put in your authorized JavaScript origins and Authorized redirect URIs.

Copy your Client ID and Client Secret, then put it into Post SMTP.

Now go back to Post SMTP settings and click on “Grant permission with Google.”

You will be asked to sign in to your Gsuite account. After that you are connected!

To make sure that your setup worked, you can click on Send a Test Email. If the email comes through, then you are good to go!

In Conclusion

You should always use SMTP if you want to make sure that your emails send from WordPress. How many of your emails didn’t get sent until you started using SMTP?

Comment below so people know how important this is.

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Wilson Muh


Wilson Muh

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