Domain named email vs generic email. Cyber Ace Designs review both types for SMEs

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Generic vs. Domain named email.

Conventional wisdom says you should have your own email address associated with your own domain name. Generic email such as Hotmail Googlemail or Yahoo! email provide a useful flexible alternative. Let’s look at this wisdom and explore the advantages of both methods available.

Professional looking address

Without doubt the ability to associate your email address and domain name gives a very professional image. A name like ‘’ with the email
‘’ is both slick and logical. When using a generic, say Google-mail, the name would become ‘’. It doesn’t have the same highly professional feel.

*Winner: Domain named

Spam Management

Friends in this business often talk about their spam filters being ‘over-active’. Clients talk of excessive spam and its associated problems. How often have you sent somebody an email only to get no reply? Is it because they don’t want to reply, they’re too busy or did their spam filter remove it from the inbox before they ever saw it?
Firstly, no email spam system is perfect because the bad guys are always ahead and the best systems still get it wrong sometimes. You have to consider the numbers game here and those who are specialising in global email services. The simple fact is, the likes of Google-mail, Hotmail and Yahoo!-mail handle gazillions of emails daily and have the most perfected bulk filtering methods on the planet.

*Winner: Generic

Access from any computer anywhere in the world

The past decade has given us multiple means of affordable instant electronic communication, like office PCs, laptops and Smart phones. Some of us share email accounts in our businesses. Others need access from anywhere in the world as they travel around. Some working groups need a combination of the above. A domain named email address is designed to deliver its mail via the host server to a single PC. There are ways around this, for example, logging directly into the server via a browser, but this is potentially messy. Allowing people direct access to the mail client on your server can be very damaging. They can go in and change settings and properties for your website, alter the way the system works, get you banned by your host or even pull down your website by accident.

You can of course have your office PC, laptop and smart-phone all receiving emails from one account fragmenting your emails across your devices.

Conversely, having a generic email address naturally separates the email and website servers and it’s much simpler to use. Your PC laptop and smart-phone all login via a standard web-page. You can be on the sky-train in Bangkok with your smart-phone whilst a colleague in London is viewing the same account on his office PC and another is sitting in an internet café in Manila.

With both domain and generic, caution must be observed when using public computers for security reasons.

*Winner: Generic

Risks of virus attack

Emails are an excellent medium for multiple classes of virus to propagate and infect computers. Both types of email system are at risk. Email using a domain name physically downloads the email to your computer hard disk. If you have the auto-display enabled in Outlook for example then an embedded virus can immediately get to work! Clicking on attachments will also activate viruses contained in them. Furthermore, if you don’t fully delete unwanted emails that contain a virus, some can sit on your hard drive like a time-bomb waiting to go off at the date their authors intend!

With generic email it’s a similar story if you have auto-display enabled or if you are using the smtp/pop3 option in Outlook. However, most people use this kind of email system through their web-browsers. When you click on an attachment using generic email, a little window pops up and asks’ you what you want to do with it. This gives you a chance to cancel your actions before it’s too late. Undeleted potentially harmful emails can’t infect your computer as they are sitting on the hard drive of your email host.

*Winner: Generic

Large file attachment uploads

Sometimes we need to send something over the net that’s pretty big, like a video clip, our holiday picture volume or some big work data files. Hotmail and Yahoo! allow a maximum of 10mb attachments per email, Google-mail are more generous with 20mb. In Outlook however, it’s possible to customize the settings to allow a whopping 200mb of attached material, that’s 10x the best of the generic systems!

It’s important to remember that when sending large attachments over the net you need a rock-solid internet connection because any time-outs will cause the upload to fail.

*Winner-Domain named


Most websites and domain named email systems are on shared servers, unless you’re paying serious money to have your own dedicated server. This means that if another company using the same server as you has a website or email that’s causing a problem, the whole server can go down taking you the innocent victim along with them! It’s a more common problem than most will admit. Through no fault of your own, you suddenly have no website and no email. Your business is log-jammed. You can’t email your most valuable clients because it doesn’t work. You simply have to wait until the server problem has been cleared and systems reloaded. Then you set about picking-up the pieces and damage limitation of your business.

Generic systems run completely independently from your server. They run on dedicated mail servers. They have dedicated maintenance teams and provide the most reliable email out there. Although generic email isn’t 100% perfect, it’s the closest thing we have online right now.



If you are prepared to put up with the risks and inflexibility associated with domain named email then the outwardly professional image you get in return is maybe worth it.

If, however, you are prepared to compromise your email address for something a little less slick, then life becomes so much more flexible, simple and rewarding as you go about running your business.


If after due diligence you decide that your business needs to combine the flexibility of generics with the professional look of a domain named email, look into the paid services of Citrix or similar. Citrix does solve part of the problem with its secure login system from any device globally but you have to pay handsomely for it. We don't endorse or use their products but some people can't live without them!

Generic  4 : 2 Domain named


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