12 Reasons to Move Your Business From Free Gmail to G Suite

Free Gmail vs. G SuiteLet’s say you’ve been using free Gmail accounts for your business communications. Your email addresses may resemble one or more of these:

abbottsolar@gmail.com
solar-lisa94@gmail.com
abbottsupport@gmail.com

Your employees may even be using assorted Yahoo Mail and cable company email addresses for business purposes.

However, your business is growing and/or you want to start to use more professional looking email addresses such as:

jabbott@abbottsolar.com
lisa@abbottsolar.com
support@abbottsolar.com

Steven Aldrich of GoDaddy has stated that potential customers are far more likely to do business with a company that uses a business email address than those that don’t.

Did you know that you can easily get business email addresses like the ones above, but continue to have the exact same Gmail user experience that you and your staff have become accustomed to?

That’s where G Suite comes in.

The email offering within G Suite is simply a business version of Gmail. No training is needed for current Gmail users.

You may or may not be fully aware of the extent of your free Gmail account functionality — but your Gmail accounts include Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, Google Forms, Google Drawings, Google My Maps and Google Sites.

G Suite includes collaborative business versions of all of these and more.

G Suite does come at a cost: $5 per user per month. But not only is this a nominal number — it might be one of the easier costs you’ve had to justify.

If you already own a domain such as abbottsolar.com for your website address — that you got from a provider such as GoDaddy, Network Solutions or Register.com — there’s a straightforward one-time setup needed to use the same domain for your G Suite email addresses.

Additional G Suite Benefits

Here are twelve additional reasons to consider a move to G Suite.

1. Email Account Ownership

Your company owns all employee email accounts. Your employees don’t own them. What if someone were to leave your company to work for a competitor or to start a competing company, but they personally own the email address that your customers use to contact them?

Within G Suite administration, if someone leaves the company, you can immediately change that person’s password and forward any emails sent to their address to someone else. You can also access all of that person’s email history.

2. File Ownership

With G Suite, all Google Docs, Slides and Sheets created by employees are owned by the company.

Keep in mind that Google Drive is also a cloud backup alternative to services such as Dropbox. You could create a company policy that requires employees to back up their local PC or Mac work folders and files to the company’s Google Drive.

If, for example, you decided to terminate an employee, you would have full access to all their business files.

3. Document Sharing

It’s easier to share documents with your team when you’re all on the same G Suite account. For example, if you wanted to give all employees view-only access to a Google Doc, that can be accomplished with just a few clicks.

4. Group Email Addresses

Above, we referenced the example email address support@abbottsolar.com. You can easily route emails sent to that type of address to multiple people or to a customer service system such as Zendesk, Freshdesk or Salesforce.

There’s no additional cost for creating group email addresses. Also, you can add as many as you want.

5. Multiple Email Aliases

For any G Suite user, multiple email aliases can be created. Here are examples:

jabbott@abbottsolar.com
john.abbott@abbottsolar.com
john@abbottsolar.com

With email aliases, “All roads lead to Rome”. It might be easier to verbally tell someone that your email address is john@abbottsolar.com, even though your business card reads the more formal john.abbott@abbottsolar.com.

There can even be multiple domains associated with each user’s email account.

If you decide to rebrand your company to “Amazing Solar” and you get the domain “amazingsolar.com”, you can tack this domain on to your G Suite account as a domain alias. The same “all roads lead to Rome” principle applies. Whether an email is sent to john@abbottsolar.com or to jabbott@amazingsolar.com, it will go to the same inbox.

6. Ability to Use Outlook as an Email Client

For employees who insist on using Outlook, Google provides Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook

7. More File Storage

The default storage for free Gmail accounts is 15GB. For G Suite Basic, it’s 30GB per user.

There are a number of options for increasing storage beyond the 30GB per user.

8. Extra Security With 2-Step Verification

Google Apps for Work 2-Step VerificationG Suite has an important layer of security that can be enforced for all users, if the admin decides to do so. This layer is known as 2-Step Verification.

If you log into G Suite from an unknown computer, you’ll be texted a verification code. For the times you are out of range on your mobile phone, you can carry a set of backup codes in your wallet so that you can securely access your G Suite account.

2-Step Verification is particularly important if you decide to use Google Drive as the cloud backup standard for company PCs or your Macs. If employees are automatically backing up a lot of local files to the cloud, you never know what sensitive information might be getting synchronized.

You can make 2-Step Verification optional or you can make it required for all users.

9. CRM Integration

At some point, you may decide to invest in a CRM system to better track leads, prospects, customers, jobs and more.

There’s a G Suite compatible CRM system called ProsperWorks. G Suite components can be synced with Salesforce using Cirrus Insight.

10. Single Sign-On To Other Business Applications

Users can be set up use your G Suite credentials to sign in to cloud business applications such as DocuSign, Marketo, Salesforce and Slack, without having to re-enter their usernames and passwords for these applications.

11. A Company Branded User Interface

Instead of having the Google logo at the top left of your users’ screens, your company’s logo can be prominently displayed within all of G Suite.

12. Support

With G Suite, there is 24/7 phone, email and chat customer support. There is no support for free Gmail.

There are a number of other benefits to using G Suite, but some of them get a little more technical.

Keep in mind that you can easily forward your personal Gmail account to your business account. That way, whether people send email to your “old” account or to your “new” business account, all email will end up in your G Suite inbox.

If you want to migrate the email from a Gmail account to a G Suite account, Google provides a service for this.

New Bonus Reason – Hangouts Meet

In March 2017, Google introduced Hangouts Meet, a new online meeting experience that is included with G Suite, but is not available within consumer GMail.

Hangouts Meet makes it easy to set up online video meetings, along with screen sharing, for up to 25 participants.

If you liked this post and are interested in trying out G Suite, here are some options for you:

If your company is headquartered in North America or South America, here’s where to sign up for a free trial.

Is your company based in Europe, the Middle East or Africa? We have a free trial link for you.

For Asia Pacific region businesses, here’s where to try out G Suite.

51 thoughts on “12 Reasons to Move Your Business From Free Gmail to G Suite

  1. And here’s a BIG reason to move from a G Suite account to a Gmail account:
    so Google Home, Google Assistant and Google Now can access your Calendar, email and photos so they are actually useful.

  2. Can’t seem to find answers to these questions but they’re what’s holding me back from G-Suites because I can’t find a sales support line to answer this.

    My number one concern is whether all of my email history will continue.

    My number 2 concern is whether we will keep email history if we would ever decide to quite Google Business and go back to personal accounts.

    Can you downgrade back to personal account? What happens if you do?

    Can we save email history to hard drives?

    This is important for me! Thanks for any information. Sorry for the 20 Questions 🙂

  3. Tim,

    You can migrate your existing email history from any webmail host into G Suite. https://support.google.com/a/answer/2525613?hl=en

    You can also migrate from Outlook. https://support.google.com/a/topic/27836

    You can’t downgrade from G Suite to consumer Gmail per se, but you could export your G Suite email history and import it into consumer Gmail accounts. You might need to work with someone or use a third party tool like Transend to accomplish this. http://www.transend.com/migration/google-apps-gmail/

    You can export email and other G Suite data to your local hard drive – https://takeout.google.com/settings/takeout

    Hope this helps.

  4. It’s really per person per month.

    A person’s email account can have multiple addresses (aliases), but there’s no extra charge beyond the single person pricing.

    Also, email addresses like support@example.com can be created with Groups, but there’s no cost for these addresses either.

  5. So if two or three people in the company want a company email, id be paying $15.00 a month for emails?

  6. Can I as a single user have multiple addresses (aliases) for the same domain and for the price of one user.

    For example :-
    sales@mydomain
    mail@mydomain
    contact@mydomain
    info@mydomain

  7. Yes. You can either add these as aliases for your email account or as group addresses which you can forward to your email address. No extra fee for either method beyond the one email account.

  8. Are my personal gmail accounts separate from g suite unless I take steps to include them? I set up gsuite recently as part of setting up a new website, but I’m not convinced it’s anything other than timewasting, as it’s proving impossible to access except via my personal email. I want to discontinue my g suite account without affecting anything else, but I can’t work out from their support articles whether this is possible

  9. Liz – you can forward mail from your personal Gmail accounts to your G Suite email account. Your replies to these will appear to recipients to be “from” your personal account(s).

    Your website is separate from your G Suite account. However, if Google is also your domain registrar, you’d want to keep that service active so that your website continues to be accessible.

  10. As a single user what would you recommend for me to have multiple addresses :-
    to add multiple addresses as aliases for my email account or as group addresses which I can forward to my email address.

    Thanks

  11. Our company uses both Windows and Mac computers, as well as Outlook for Windows, Outlook for Mac and iCal. I am trying to find a calendaring system that’ll work for all these systems. I’ve been trying to use Google Calendar for it but it’s not been very successful. Would G Suite make any difference?

  12. Deborah – the best results from Calendar sharing would be if all users were to use the online Google Calendar. When synching multiple desktop calendars, there can be issues. G Suite will not be different in this regard from consumer Google Calendar.

  13. I am thinking about switching to G-suite but we now have 12 email addresses, but only for 3 of these reliable delivery is essential. I am wondering whether I can just use 3 email addresses with G-suite and for remaining 9 addresses just setup email forwarders (are these free with G-suite?) that will redirect messages to people’s personal accounts on other domains (e.g. Hotmail, Gmails, etc.)?

  14. Mike – it is technically possible, using Groups, to set up a free domain address for each of the remaining 9 and then forward their domain addresses to their legacy email addresses.

    However, their replies will come from their Hotmail, Gmail, etc. addresses. Also, they will not have access to any of the other benefits of G Suite, such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, Google Drive, etc.

  15. I currently use free gmail as a shared account with my business partner. If we switch to G-Suite, can we still access this same account, or transfer the information there into a new shared email account?

  16. Our group of 7 (6 mental health therapists and a biller) are considering HIPAA-compliant email solutions, including G-Suites. It appears that we would be paying 7x$5 = 45/month for this service – not unreasonable. My key question is, I gather that this makes our emails to our patients encrypted, but what about their emails to us? Are those encrypted/HIPAA-protected with this system?

  17. Michael – I do not know if this would conform to HIPAA requirements, but here’s a possible approach:

    1. Check to see if a new patient’s email service supports TLS encryption by starting to send them an email:

    https://blog.google/products/gmail/making-email-safer-for-you-posted-by/

    2. If you see the lock icon, add their domain or email address in the compliance section of the Admin Console in G Suite:

    https://support.google.com/a/answer/2520500?hl=en

    The result will be:

    Outgoing mail – Mail won’t be delivered and will bounce. You’ll get a non-delivery report (NDR). Only one send attempt is made (no retries).

    Incoming mail – Mail is rejected without any notification to you, although the sender will receive an NDR.

  18. Laura – it would be a new account, but you could migrate your Gmail history to that account. You could also forward emails sent to your Gmail account to the new G Suite account.

  19. My wife and I are starting a small local business that will be producing a very appealing item of food that probably 90% of the world’s population loves.

    We will deliver (mostly via FedEx and Overnight UPS. Next or same day.

    Is this Google G – Suite the real deal or just another money maker for the already unrealistically wealthy Google.

    How much is the darn thing going to cost?

  20. Jim – I’d say it’s the real deal. All indications are that Google is “in it to win it” long term for business email and productivity apps. It’s $5 per month for each of you. You’ll also need to pay for a domain, which you can get through Google or elsewhere – $12 per year or so.

  21. I have read the comments and am not clear on one thing. We currently use Gmail for personal & business use. If we were to upgrade to G Suite does this affect only our business email addresses?

  22. Dalice – subscribing to G Suite would not affect your existing Gmail account. It would be a new account that you can optionally migrate your Gmail history to. You can also forward incoming mail to your Gmail account to your G Suite account.

  23. Really glad I found this blog! We’re small – 3 people – two PC’s and one Mac, plus 3 iPhones. We’ve been using O365, but have had ongoing problems trying to synchronize Contacts and Calendars between Outlook and the iOS devices.
    So very tempted by the G Suite option. However, we’d lose the MS products and the comfort of having locally based applications – Word, Excel – as well as local email, contact and calendar data in case of web connectivity problems.
    Any way around these concerns?

  24. Noel – I’m glad you found this post helpful.

    G Suite seems to work best if everyone commits to working with the web apps to the greatest extent possible. Using an iPhone as a personal hotspot is one fallback for internet connectivity problems.

    For those who need the Microsoft desktop components, you could do a one time purchase of Office Home & Business 2016.

  25. Ok we are migrating from O365 using the migration tool. I’m very impressed that it is bringing over all the folders that we love about outlook. It looks like it is labeling all the emails. It is however taking forever. 🙁

    My question is… We have 8 people migrating over. I know each person has there own access to all the google apps but what about drive? Is there one central place for file storage rather than having each person store some of the company wide documents?

    My biggest frustration so far is that the documentation for using all the google G suite products is all over the place. Can you please provide a link to the help file on a centralized google drive, if such a thing exists. Thank you

  26. Signmaker – In G Suite Basic, Google Drive has a peer-to-peer type design.

    As such, to create a central place for file storage, one user should create a folder and set the sharing to “On – anyone at [your company name] can find and access”. All users can then be instructed to go to “Shared With Me” in Google Drive, right click on the folder and select “Add to My Drive”. Then, that folder will appear in each user’s My Drive. Each user can color code and/or star the folder to make it stand out in their Drive.

    A sub-folder structure can be built out under that shared folder.

    A recommendation is to begin the name of the top level folder and all sub-folders with your company name. This makes it easy to search for a specific folder rather than having to navigate down several levels. For example, a user can search using the string “type:folder [your company name] templates” to go directly to the company templates folder.

  27. I just saw a link about Team Drive. Is that more like a general file system, and could this replace our local Networked Drive Storage? Looks like you have to move to G Suite for business, which gives you unlimited storage. Can we mix and match people in our organization as to have G suite basic and those who have G suite business?

  28. Hello, first of all many thanks for the great article!

    My question here is in relation of how aliases work.

    My wife an I, we run a small distribution business. We do not have any employee but have many different email accounts for the benefit of separating each section of the company: our personal emails, administration (for tax and invoices), general info email…etc All in all we count fo around 10 different email accounts.

    So for example, we currently we have 3 different email addresses, one for each type of order that we get:

    online.oders@domain.com (for web orders)
    orders@domain.com ( for orders from retailers)
    amazon.orders@domain.com ( amazon orders)

    So my question is if I would create an user lets say orders@domain.com and then set up aliases for the other type of orders, is there a way to automatically have the emails that are sent to the aliases placed on a different inbox/folder so we can easily identify what type of order it is?

    Moreover, can we answer emails using the aliases? This is if we receive an emial to online.orders@domain.com can we reply using that alias or it will always be from the main user account? In this case orders@domain.com?

    We think that we would much benefit from switching to GSuite but we need to find a workaround on how to handle so manu different email addresses so we do not end up paying 50€ per just for email since we do not need all the additional services such us drive, docs… etc for each email account.

    Many thanks!!!!

  29. Berto – you could segment the inbound emails into different labels (folders), but as far as I know, the reply would come from the primary email address for the account.

  30. Thanks for this post. I do have one question however: If I’ve purchased G-Suite through a reseller (and paying a significant amount more) Can I purchase G-Suite separately and integrate it into my domain?

  31. Hi, great post, just one question:

    Currently we have 5 email company based email addresses, but each incoming email is forwarded to a free gmail account where all emails are processed.

    This was not the original intention, but it has worked out this way.

    I want to move to G Suite, primarily for Google Docs sharing. As I understand it I can setup a collaborative inbox in Google groups and have copies of all emails, within the G Suite, go there.

    Here’s my question, can emails coming to our original free Gmail account also be forwarded to a Collaborative inbox as well?

    Thanks for your time in this matter.

  32. As far as I know, you would need to move your domain to the new G Suite account — but you might want to check with Google support on this one.

  33. My eyes are red and dried out from reading every Google privacy policy, terms of service, and security policy that I can find, yet I can’t find one clear, unequivocal statement that Google will never keep data from its own scan my business email. I do not want anyone scanning my business email content the way Google does to its free gmail users!

    I noticed that Google cannily says that they won’t show me ads in my g suite app windows, but that doesn’t say that they won’t build an “interest profile” on me or my employees, which can then be sold for advertising on non-g suite sites.

    Does Google have any clear statement anywhere about keeping or using data from scans of our email, or documents, or events, etc?

  34. Ben – I’ve been a G Suite / Google Apps user since almost Day 1 and have yet to see any evidence of retargeting based on business email communications. Then again, the only things certain in life are death and taxes.

  35. Hi, Staff Writer. I found this website after googling about needing gmail customer support, which appears to be non-existent if you have free email. There is a gmail address that sounds very similar to my yahoo email address. I think I may have set it up when I was buying a smartphone and then forgot the password… and then was convinced by Verizon staff to “just choose another email address.” I think I have a couple of old email addresses like that. Anyway, I can’t get into that gmail account, even through the account recovery function. Evidently, friends and associates have been sending information to that account, and it’s not bouncing. I’m concerned about identify theft.

    So, my question is… if I pay for the gsuite service (for just me) will I be able to get customer service to look into that old gmail account to see if it’s active and if someone else is using it?

    I’m thinking about getting a gsuite business account anyway for a small business (just me) I plan to set up this year. The main reason would be to have customer support, because it is very disconcerting to not be able to get help from a real person when I’m having a problem that could affect my business! I’m not in a big hurry to set that up if I can’t get help now with the old gmail issue. Know what I mean?

  36. Hi, so we have our own domain and already have 10 email adresses there. What will happend if we want 3 of these emails to become G-suite? Will the other email adresses breaks coz we change MX records of domain and such or can you have a mix of own email from current webhost and Gsuite email?

  37. Hi everyone,

    I work in a small company with about 30 employees. We have a domain that’s integrated with our online service, and everyone in our staff has a ourdomain.com email. We all use a free google account and have the ourdomain.com as secondary emails through gmail.

    One of our employees is frustrated that he can’t accept and send Google calendar invites with his ourdomain.com email. I know he can accept forwarded calendar invites, but he doesn’t want the auto-response from his gmail, and he wants to be able to send invites with the ourdomain.com address as well.

    I think gsuite would be a good solution. However, I don’t want to migrate our entire staff to gsuite. So my question is, can this one employee use gsuite with our domain, and the rest of the team stay on the free version? Will ourdomain.com be affected in any way by setting up that one email address for him? We use ourdomain.com for much more than a website and email. We have an online service as well.

    Thanks very much!

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