Hosting Email on Google: A Good Idea?

When looking for a new email provider, you might wonder: Is it a good idea to host your emails von Google? Learn everything about the pros & cons of a free or paid Google email account!

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Hosting Email on Google: Pros & Cons

There are around 4.5 billion email users worldwide, and more than 1.5 billion rely on Gmail. Given these statistics, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that hosting email on Google’s service is an option that many small business owners and private individuals immediately consider when looking for a new email provider. After all, with such a large user base, Gmail must be doing something right.

But before you make the switch to Google, it’s important to understand the different personal and business Gmail options available to you and what their advantages and disadvantages are.

Your Options When
Hosting Email von Google

When it comes to hosting email on Google, you have two options:

Option 01: Free Gmail


This is the wildly popular consumer-focused email service that most people know. Gmail was launched by Google in 2004, and it quickly became popular because it provided significantly more storage space than its competitors at the time.

While Google’s competitors have caught up in terms of storage, Gmail itself has evolved substantially, offering a whole host of advanced features, polished web and mobile apps, as well as countless third-party integrations.

Option 02: Google Workspace

Google Workspace

Formerly known as G Suite, Google Workspace is Google’s suite of paid business productivity tools, including a business-oriented version of Gmail. Several different Google Workspace plans are available:

Business Starter ($6 per user/month):
Offers custom and secure business email, 100-participant video meetings, 30 GB of pooled storage per user, standard security and management controls, and standard support.

Business Standard ($12 per user/month):
Improves the Starter plan with 150-participant video meetings plus recording, 2 TB of pooled storage per user, and an option for a paid upgrade to Enhanced Support.

Business Plus ($18 per user/month):
Expands the previous plan with eDiscovery and retention, 500-participant video meetings, 5 TB of pooled storage, enhanced security, and management controls, with standard support and a paid upgrade option to Enhanced Support.

Enterprise (Contact sales for pricing):
The most advanced option, offering all previous features plus S/MIME encryption, 1,000-participant video meetings with advanced features, at least 5 TB of storage with the option for more, and enhanced support with an option for a premium upgrade.

Free vs Paid:
Advantages & Disadvantages

Free Gmail: Pros & Cons

Hosting Email on Google: Gmail Pros & Cons

It’s said that the best things in life are free, but does the saying hold true even for hosting email on Google? Let’s take a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of using the free version of Gmail to find out:

Advantages of Free Gmail:

✅  Completely free: One of the most significant advantages of Gmail is that it’s completely free. This aspect makes it an attractive option for people who want to minimize their expenses as much as possible.

✅  Easy to set up and use: Gmail would never become the email service of choice for more than 1.5 billion people if it weren’t for its exceptional ease of use. You can get started in just a minute, and the default settings work just fine for most users.

Disadvantages of Free Gmail:

⛔️  Limited security settings: While Gmail is certainly  a secure email service that does a lot to prevent hackers from gaining unauthorized access to your mailbox, it lacks many of the advanced security options available to Google Workspace users.

⛔️  Basic versions of Google apps: Free Gmail users have access to basic versions of Google apps. Features such as noise cancellation in Meet or custom branding for document and form templates in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides are missing.

⛔️  No custom email address: As a free Gmail user, your email address will always end with, and your preferred email address may not even be available, forcing you to choose a less desirable alternative.

⛔️  Limited storage space: Free Gmail accounts come with 15 GB of storage, shared across Gmail, Google Drive, and Google Photos. This may seem like a lot at first, but reaching this limit is actually easier than it might seem. You can get additional storage space by subscribing to a Google One plan, but the cost is fairly steep.

⛔️  Lack of customer support: Support for free Gmail users is limited to the Google Help Center knowledge base, Q&As, and forums. This level of support may be insufficient for users who can’t afford to be without their email too long.

⛔️  Not compliant with GDPR: If you’re hoping to use the free Gmail service for business communication, then we have bad news for you: the free version of Gmail is not GDPR-compliant. Why not? Because Google acts as the data controller and processes personal data for their own purposes, such as scanning the content of emails to target ads.

Google Workspace: Pros & Cons

Hosting Email on Google: Google Workspace Pros & Cons

Now that you’re familiar with some of the most important reasons why you should or shouldn’t use the free Gmail service, let’s consider the pros and cons of Google Workspace:

Advantages of Google Workspace:

✅  Greater level of administrative control and security: Google Workspace provides users with extensive advanced administrative controls and security features. Admins can manage user accounts and security settings from a centralized admin console, implement two-factor authentication, and use Google Vault for eDiscovery and retention, among other things.

✅  Support for custom email addresses: Unlike free Gmail accounts, Google Workspace allows the use of custom email addresses that match your business domain. This means you can have an email address like “john@yourcompany” instead of “”).

✅  As much storage space as you need: Google Workspace offers significantly more storage than the free version of Gmail. With the Business Standard plan, for example, you get 2 TB of storage per user for just $12 a month, which is more than enough for most businesses.

✅  Business versions of Google Apps: Access business-focused versions of Docs, Sheets, Slides, Meet, and more. Plus, depending on your plan, tools like Google Vault (for data retention) and Google Work Insights (for productivity tracking) are included.

✅  Around-the-clock customer support: Paid Google Workspace plans offer direct customer support, so you can get help with any issue you are having, at any time of the day or night.

✅  Guaranteed reliability: Google guarantees 99.9% uptime for your business email, and the platform automatically backs up your emails, documents, and other data to ensure business continuity.

✅  Compliant with GDPR: Google Workspace lets you sign a data processing amendment in the admin console, which makes Google act as the data processor and prohibits them from using personal data for their own purposes. Additionally, Google offers standard contractual clauses for international data transfers and provides additional security features to help businesses better protect personal data.

Disadvantages of Google Workspace:

⛔️  Complex to set up and manage: Implementing Google Workspace takes more work and requires more technical knowledge than the free version of Gmail. A tech-savvy person should be able to do it, but someone with only very basic IT skills might struggle.

⛔️  Costs money: A monthly subscription is required to use Google Workspace. While subscription prices start relatively low, the total cost can add up quickly if you have a larger team.

Gmail or Google Workspace:
What Should I Use?

Hosting Email on Google: Pros & Cons

The decision between free Gmail and Google Workspace ultimately depends on how you intend to use your email:

Best Choice for Personal Use:

For personal use, free Gmail is generally an excellent choice. It’s completely free, easy to set up and use, and provides more than enough features and storage space for most individuals. The lack of a custom email address and advanced security features is usually not a significant concern.

Best Choice for Businesses:

On the other hand, businesses, regardless of their size, should always go with Google Workspace because that’s the only way to get a custom email address when hosting email on Google and because the advanced security features and administrative controls available in Google Workspace are critical for businesses to protect sensitive information and comply with regulations.

➡️  If you’re an individual home user with entrepreneurial aspirations, then we recommend you start with free Gmail – you can always migrate to Google Workspace later as explained in the next section of this article.

How To
Migrate Your Existing Emails to Google

Hosting Email on Google: Migrate Emails to Google

If you’ve decided to choose the free Gmail service or one of the paid Google Workspace plans as your email hosting solution, you may be wondering how to migrate your existing emails to your new account. Fortunately, there’s an easy-to-use automated email migration tool called MailJerry that can help you do just that.

With MailJerry, you can painlessly migrate emails from Outlook, Yahoo, AOL, and most other popular email services in just a few steps from any web browser, desktop computer, or mobile device:

1) Download MailJerry or use the convenient web app to start a new migration.

2) Enter your current email details (where your emails are now) and your new Google email address and password. MailJerry auto-detects settings for common providers, so you usually only need your email address and password. Outlook / MS365 users can authenticate via OAuth.

3) Click on “Check Settings”, review your migration and then begin the migration process. MailJerry will handle the rest for you, transferring your emails and folder structure directly to your new Google inbox and even create all necessary Google / Gmail labels.

For full instructions and additional details, please visit MailJerry’s guide on  IMAP to Gmail migration.

Quick Summary:Hosting Email on Google?

When considering hosting email on Google, you have two main options: free Gmail and Google Workspace. In this article, we’ve discussed the advantages and disadvantages of both options. Unsurprisingly, Google’s business offering, Google Workspace, is far superior for professional use, whereas free Gmail gets the job done fine for personal use.

Summary: Yahoo Mail vs Gmail Comparison

AspectFree GmailGoogle Workspace
Pricefreestarting $ 6 per user / month
Storagemax. 15 GB30 GB up to 5 TB
Custom Email Address⛔️
Security⭐️⭐️⭐️ good⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ very high
Webmailer Shows Adsyes, prominentno
Easy Setup✅ yes, very easy⛔️ IT knowledge required
Google AppsBasic VersionAdvanced Version
Customer Support:⛔️ Basic✅ Advanced
GDPR compliant:⛔️ No✅ Yes
Best for:Personal use, option to upgrade anytimeBusiness use

What would MailJerry choose?

MailJerry would always host it’s email data on it’s own VPS or dedicated server. After all, even with Google Workspace that is GDPR compliant, MailJerry values the security and privacy of it’s data above all else.

➡️ But if MailJerry for some reasons had to consider hosting email on Google and therfore decice between free Gmail and Google Workspace, MailJerry would opt for Google Workspace. After all, the numerous advantages of Google Workspace far outweight the small disadvantge of having to pay $ 6 per user / month.