If you own a small business, professional communications are important. Email may not be as exciting as creating social media accounts, but a professional email address not only sets a boundary between work and your personal life, but makes a good first impression when you contact customers and associates.
What is a Professional Email Address?
A professional email address is an email account that is used for business purposes and distinct from a personal email address. The typical professional email address format is firstname.lastname@example.org. Some businesses only use first names, others use firstname.lastname, and others use initials instead of either name.
Why Do I Need a Professional Email Address?
You may be thinking “why can’t I just use my personal email address for my business?” It’s a free country, you can do what you want, but a professional email account has several benefits including:
- Trust and authenticity
- Ease of recalling
- Added security
Professional Email Address Best Practices
A professional email address should be just that: professional. Here are a few tips to make it that way.
Keep it Short
A short email address is easy for other people to remember, which is especially important for business email addresses.
Make it Pronounceable
When you say your email address out loud, people should know how to spell it. If you have a last name that other people in your country struggle with, stick to just a last initial.
Keep it Relevant
Your professional email address isn't the place to be funny. You could risk someone finding it inappropriate for the workplace. Stay on the safe side by only including your name and other work-related words.
Don't Use Special Characters
Numbers, dashes, underscores, and other special characters just make email addresses harder to dictate and remember. If you must use periods because variations on your name are taken, limit yourself to one or two of them.
If you have a nickname that isn't a well-known short version of your legal name, leave it out of your professional email address. Generally, the name on top of your resume should be what goes in your professional email address. If the name you go by and your legal name start with the same letter, consider using the first initial last name format.
Leave Titles Out
If you include your job title in your business email address and then get promoted, you’ll have to change it. That could make things annoying for your customers and colleagues.
Professional Email Address Ideas
There are a few different ways to create a solid professional email address. Here are some examples using a favorite fictional small business, Bob’s Burgers:
First Name Only
Name + Initial Combination
Name+profession, degree, location, etc
Free Email Providers
There are a lot of free email providers that make great fits for small business owners including, but not limited to:
- Gmail/G Suite
- Microsoft Outlook
- Zoho mail
When you choose a business email provider, make sure to keep these features in mind:
- Storage limits
- Spam filter
- Access by mobile device
- Security features
Using Generic Email Inbox Addresses
Generic inbox addresses are a good idea to display publicly on your website. Directing customers to a department inbox instead of individual team members protects employees’ privacy and reduces spam. Some examples of generic business email addresses include
Using a Custom Domain for a Business Email Address
If you have a custom domain name for your business, you can create custom email addresses to go with it using a DNS feature called MX recordsMany website builders, including Sav, have DNS templates for popular email providers to make it easier to set up.
Crafting a Professional Email Signature
Your name and job title let recipients know who your email is from, but that’s not all an email signature is. It’s also a branding opportunity. Putting other contact information such as your business location, phone number, and social media accounts in your signature is a great way to make your presence known. You can even use an email signature template to make it look pretty and like you put a lot of effort into it.
How Sav Can Help
Sav makes it easy to purchase custom domains and create free email addresses with your preferred email service provider. We help small business owners succeed online so you can focus on running your business. Get started today!