Moving my email to GMail / G Suite

Email is critical so I moved my email to GMail and GSuite

Why Move my email to GMail?

I have ‘bitten the bullet’ and decided to move my email to GMail, actually I will be moving everything over to G Suite which is the rebranded Google Apps for Business. So why would I do this you ask?

This is not something that you undertake lately as moving email this can be a pain if you are are already firmly established. But, with good planning I it will be a relatively smooth process – not hard or complicated but most likely a little tedious in places. Follow along with this and the next few articles to make your move painless.

If it is going to be tedious then why change to GMail?

In short I need the spam filtering, advanced filtering, tagging and automation. Google and GMail are brilliant at all of these.

As you can imagine I keep track of a large number of things in the industry and many of these come as email updates or offers. I tried auto filing them with my standard email but it takes too many clicks to file something after it is read and as a result my inbox was filling up. With GMail I will be able to auto tag emails and leave them in my inbox until I have read them and then they can be processed and filed with one click.

GMail also has a very effective spam filter and I have seen the number of spam messages I am receiving has gone through the roof.

Why tedious you ask?

I have been using Google for my business needs for some time as the collaboration features are excellent. I come from a long background of life in the Microsoft world so when I say this it is with experience of both sides (Microsoft Apps on the desktop and recently Office 365 as the cloud offering).

The reason I am expecting this to be a little tedious is that I have an existing (free) Google account that I registered with the email domain I want to use for my GMail address – it gives me all the wonderful tools from Google but not the email so I kept my email through my BlueHost account and it has all been working like a dream.

So why tedious? Because I will need to move all of the documents that are owned under my old Google account over to the new G Suite account with GMail and then change the ownership of these documents so that I do not need to keep referring back to the old account. Luckily there are not too many of these and it is not difficult – just time consuming. (I might reach out to my development team to see if we can create a script to manage this as it will then happen automatically, so keep your eye on this series of articles to see if it is an advantage to you too)

Email features I need to replicate

  • Forwarders – I use these as an ‘alias’ on my account so that I have the benefits of a separate email account but not the overhead. For example I use domain.xyz@peoplesgeek.com for clients who want me to keep an eye on their domain registration so there are a number of these. [Solution will be to use alias and filters in GMail to achieve the same result]
  • Multiple Email accounts – I will need to convert some email accounts to an Alias. This is something I have been meaning to do for a while. Again this is not hard but something to make sure is done or they will show up as bounces once I move over.
  • History – all the existing emails in my inbox and filed emails will need to be moved over to the new account but I don’t want to lose how they are filed so this will have to be dragged across one IMAP folder at a time.
    • Luckily I realised that I can set up my email to look at the old account for as long as I need it so there isn’t any risk of losing incoming emails as I switch over and I can do the migration of the old emails any time I like.
  • Backups – My email is currently backed up by my host and also by my local backup from my computer. Now I will need to rely on Google (and probably keep a regular snapshot locally as well but that will be the subject of a different article)

Stay tuned for a step by step process that you can replicate and move your email to one of the best providers available. Learn from my experience so it is easy for you!

Brian ( your “People’s Geek”)