It’s a very common for our customers to signup for web hosting and want to forward the email from their domain to their Gmail account.
Many businesses want to use their domain for their email address as it looks more professional, but they only want one place to login and check their email.
I understand this concept completely as I’ve been doing this for my two+ decades of working online.
However, if you just simply setup an email forward inside of cPanel, you could be in for big trouble.
The Problem With Spam
If you get a lot of Spam email and you’re forwarding it to another service provider, such as Google, it looks to them like you’re sending the Spam!
This causes them to automatically place the IP address of the sending server on their Real-time Blackhole List (RBL) meaning that all emails from that IP are automatically rejected.
This can be a major problem!
To prevent this from happening, you need to setup some anti-spam filters inside of your cPanel, to allow our servers to filter it out before it makes to Gmail or your email service provider.
How To Filter Spam On An Email Forward
Setting up anti-spam filters is very easy!
You just need to login to cPanel and click on Spam Filters:
This brings up Apache SpamAssassin™ which is enabled by default on all new cPanel accounts created at NameHero.
Despite being enabled by default, it only identifies the Spam emails by placing **SPAM** in the subject line, it doesn’t discard them.
Therefore we need to adjust the rules to handle the spam appropriately.
There are two options:
- Move New Spam to a Separate Folder (Spam Box)
- Automatically Delete New Spam (Auto-Delete)
The first option will automatically send the spam emails to a unique Spam folder. This way you still get the email, but it’s isolated from your other legitimate emails.
The problem you run into here is that folder (or box) will fill up rather quickly and chew away at the disk space on your account.
For me personally, I don’t want to have to worry about checking something else and keeping it clean, hence I choose the second option to automatically delete them.
Regardless which option you decide is best for you, click on it to toggle it on:
Once the system know hows to handle the emails marked as **SPAM** it will handle them accordingly.
The next option you should be aware of is what it considers Spam and what is considers legitimate email.
This is adjusted by using the Spam Threshold Score:
By default the score is set to 5. The lower the score, the more conservative the setting.
As noted above, a score of 1 will have many false positives.
I personally recommend starting at 5 and then increasing to decreasing depending on how well it works.
On some of my biggest offending email addresses I will go down to 4 but normally not lower than that.
Finally, since we told the system to auto-delete, I like to whitelist important email addresses and domains to make sure I don’t miss any.
You can do this by clicking on the Show Additional Configurations option:
Inside of here you have the option to whitelist and blacklist.
Apache Spam Assassin will simply ignore emails on the whitelist and completely block emails on the blacklist.
An example whitelist may look like this:
Notice how we’re using an asterisk * as a wildcard so it will match any email on a specific domain. This is good for domains such as NameHero where we send emails from multiple addresses (i.e. contact, support, sales, etc.)
In addition, if you subscribe to emails from retailers, it maybe important to add them, so they don’t get lost in a filter (i.e. target.com).
Blacklisting is good if you’re constantly receiving Spam email from a specific domain (or if you’re trying to block an ex partner).
For example, one of my email addresses gets a ton of Spam from qq.com. Therefore we can assign it to the blacklist:
Doing both of these options allows me to keep a nice clean email inbox without a bunch of garbage I don’t want to read.
You also have the option to make some custom rules, called Calculated Spam Score Settings, which will match specific types of content, but I don’t really see the need unless you’re trying to get very specific.
With Spam filtering in place on your email forwards, you’ll put an end to accidentally being place on a blacklist or RBL and ensure your emails are being delivered seamlessly.
I’ve also filmed a tutorial to show you this process from start to finish:
How To Add Your Email Account To Gmail
Some customers wish to add their email accounts from their web hosting package to their existing Gmail account.
This ensures all of their email is going to one place, meaning they only have one login to check everything.
To do this, you have to make sure your email account is created inside of cPanel.
Once you’ve done that, you can login to your Gmail and click the settings cog and Settings:
You then need to click on the Accounts and Import tab:
Beside Check mail from other accounts click on Add a mail account:
This brings up a dialog where you can input the credentials from your email account created inside of cPanel.
To get the correct options, I recommend logging into cPanel -> Email Accounts -> and clicking Connect Devices beside the email account you’re wanting to import:
You then want to click on Set Up Mail Client:
From here, you’ll notice a big blue box that says: Secure SSL/TLS Settings (Recommended)
This is all the information you’ll need to import into Gmail.
Going back to the Gmail dialog box, you want to enter your email address:
On the next screen you’ll want to select Import emails from my other account (POP3) since we don’t use Gmailify:
And then fill in the credentials provided by cPanel:
Username – This is your email address
Password – This is the password to your email account
POP Server – This is defined in the blue box inside of cPanel
Port – This is also defined in that same blue box
Leave a copy of retrieved message on the server – This will actually make a copy of the email and leave it on your hosting account. I don’t recommend doing this as it will chew your disk space and not help you keep a clean inbox.
Always use a secure connection (SSL) when retrieving mail – You always want to do this!
Label incoming messages: [email protected] – This will automatically label the email from your new email address inside of Gmail so you know where it was sent from.
Archive incoming messages – This will skip the inbox and automatically archive the mail. I don’t recommend doing this.
Once you’ve completed this, your email will automatically be imported into Gmail.
There is one final step. If when replying to those emails, you don’t want the people to ever see your Gmail, you have to import your SMTP settings.
On the next screen, you can set that up:
Gmail gives you the option to treat the new email account as an alias.
This means, it’ll still say you’re sending email from your domain, but it will use Gmail’s server.
There is no problem in doing this, but if you’d like to use your web hosting account to send the mail as well, you can set that up by checking No.
Most people will want to use an Alias as Gmail as an extremely high inboxing rate.
If you select No, you’ll need to follow some additional steps:
Once again, using the blue box from cPanel, you’ll fill out the appropriate fields:
You will then save changes, and they will send you a verification email where you must enter the pin code on the next screen or click the link in the email:
Once all of this is completed, congratulations, you’ve now linked your email account to your Gmail!
Now when you check your Gmail, you’ll see emails from your web hosting account:
You’re all set! All of your email is in one place and you can easily distinguish between the two.
I’ve filmed a video tutorial to walk you through the entire Gmail setup:
Let us know if you have any questions or problems setting up!
Ryan Gray is the founder and CEO of NameHero, one of the fastest growing independent web hosts in the United States. Ryan has been working online since 1998 and has over two-decades experience in Internet Entrepreneurship.