If you run an online business, then chances are that you use email for at least some of your communications. In certain industries, it might be one of the primary ways of communicating with clients, customers, partners, employees, and other collaborators.
Email can be used to do everything, from sending cold outreach to leads to initiating an interview processes for new talent, dealing with customer service issues, and everything in between.
So, since you're probably already sending and receiving business emails, you already have a general idea of what an email client is. However, when it comes to the client you use, sending and receiving emails is just one part of the equation, or you can say - sending and receiving emails is just the tip of the iceberg.
To truly optimize your company's email usage, you need the right email client - one that can help you get more done in less time by improving productivity, communication, and collaboration.
In this article, we will list down some crucial features that you should look for in your email client to improve your and your business's productivity.
What is an Email Client? Demystifying the Term
An email client is any software application or program that enables users to manage their email accounts, send and receive emails, and organize their email correspondence.
During the early days of email, these clients were local, desktop-based software programs. But, as the years went on, web-based and cloud-based email clients became the new norm. For example,
Nowadays, many email clients do much more than provide the basic email management features and functionalities that we're all familiar with.
It's important to consider some must-have extras when deciding on the right email client for your company.
Must have Features in an Email Client:
Now let's see some unique and useful features that you should look for in the email client, in case you are looking for one right now.
1. Usability and Interface
A user-friendly interface is essential for ensuring everyone on your team can adopt your new email client and start using it efficiently right away. Your team should be able to navigate the email client effortlessly.
Look for an intuitive design that minimizes the learning curve and allows your employees to focus on their tasks rather than struggling with the software.
The client should also have a Mobile application so that you and your employees can access the emails using their mobile phones too.
Ensure that the email client you choose is compatible with your company's existing operating systems and devices. Compatibility issues can disrupt workflows and lead to frustration among your employees.
Ideally, your email client should work across a variety of mobile and other devices so everyone can access and use it no matter where they are or what device they're using.
But if you want to use Desktop clients, then you should always check if applications are available for Windows and Mac OS, at least.
3. Security Features
Security should be another top priority. Look for an email client that offers robust security features such as encryption, SSL certificates, and other forms of data protection.
Protecting sensitive company data and communications is essential in today's digital landscape, where cyber attacks and data theft are a constant concern.
5. Integration Capabilities
Consider how well the email client integrates with other tools and software your company uses, such as calendars and other email platforms, so you can sync everything in one place.
Seamless integrations can make onboarding a breeze, streamline workflows, and enhance productivity.
6. Collaborative Features
If your company relies on team collaboration, look for an email client that offers collaborative features. Things like shared calendars, to-do lists, notes, and documents can facilitate teamwork and project management.
If the email client provides a chat application to enable team members to chat for smaller tasks rather than sending emails, then that can be quite productive.
Consider your company's future growth and make sure that the email client you choose will be able to keep up with it. The email client should be scalable to accommodate additional users and needs as your company expands.
A few points to consider:
How many users you can sign up for the service? If there are paid plans, how many users are allowed?
How much storage do you get overall and for each individual account?
Are there any limits on file uploads?
Does the email client come with Technical support?
Can you host the client yourself on your own server?
Does it support integration to 3rd party tools?
Does it support Webhooks? Maybe in the future you want to integrate some email workflows with your business application, then having Webhook support would be very useful.
8. Custom Domains
Sending emails from a custom domain, such as "email@example.com", goes a long way toward helping you build a professional image for your brand.
Recipients are much more likely to engage with emails coming from a professional domain instead of a generic one.
So, go for the email client where you can easily configure and use your business domain name for your email accounts.
Finally, consider the cost of the email client. While you may be able to get away with using a free service to start with, you should make sure the client you use has different premium options available that provide advanced features and functionalities.
But don't pick the email client just because it is FREE or cheaper, because it is very difficult to change email clients, so think of long-term association.
Making the Right Choice
No matter what industry you’re in, effective email communication is something you’re going to need in order to do business efficiently. However, simply relying on any old email client may limit your company's potential.
Choosing the right email client offers many benefits, from improved organization and productivity to enhanced security and collaboration.
Investing resources in finding an email client that suits your needs is an investment in your company's success. So, make sure to be on the lookout for the must-have features discussed above before you commit to a new professional email client, whether it’s free or paid.