Using Gmail for GoDaddy Email

I always wanted a personalized email address like, but it never ended up how i wanted it, until now. Sure it’s easy to setup your own email server or register for GoDaddy’s email solutions, but they’re ugly. If you setup your own server have fun getting your mail from the road, and GoDaddy’s webmail shouldn’t even be considered a real email solution. Here’s a way to get everything you’ve ever wanted, and more.

#Send and Receive email in Gmail

For this I used GoDaddy since they’re my domain registrar and webhost. I also setup an email forwarding account, so there is no actual inbox for the address I setup. It is true that Gmail can receive mail from POP3, but it only checks once per hour. This may be fine if it is an account that doesn’t frequently receive mail, but if this is one of your main email addresses you’ll probably want to receive the mail as if you were checking the actual mailbox for that account. The email forward just redirects the email to another account and you get it at the same time you normally would. Additionally, you can only recieve mail through 5 POP3 accounts from Gmail, so if you have more than five websites that you want to receieve mail from you won’t be able to get it all through Gmail unless you just forward the mail to Gmail.

If you’ve you’ve ever bought a domain or hosting from GoDaddy you might have tried they’re webmail service, but more importantly, you probably have more free email forwards than you could ever use. I wasn’t even aware that I had access to any email forwards until I went looking for the solution to this problem.

The first thing your going to want to do is sign in to your GoDaddy account and click “Email” under “My Products” on the left.

Then you want to click on “Email Forwarding Plans“. For me it was right in the middle of the page in the “Email Plans” section.

Now, you will most likely have free credits if you’ve ever bought anything from GoDaddy. Find the type of credit that you want to use and click “Use Credit“. A box will show on the right side with a dropdown of domains that you own. Select the domain that you want to use it with and click “Continue“. If the account doesn’t show up right away you might have to refresh that page a couple of times.

Then your going to click “Manage Account“. On the next screen click “Add” and fill out the details for the email address you want to create and the Gmail address you want to forward to and click “OK” at the bottom right to save. You can also click the “Bulk Address” option if you are adding more than one address.

Now your going to login to the Gmail account you forwarded the address to. In order to send email from that address you need to go to “Settings“, “Accounts“, and add the address under “Send Mail as:“. This will send verification to that email address to make sure you can send mail from that account. Make sure you change the “When receiveing as message:” value to “Reply from the same address the message was sent to“.

Go back to the inbox and there should be a verification email there, since you already forwarded the account to Gmail. Open that email and click the link. You’re Done! Now all the email you get at that personalized address will go to your Gmail inbox and when you reply it will be from that personalized address.

Optional: If you want to be able to sort through multiple email accounts in your inbox you can setup a label for that account. Just go to “Settings“, “Filters“, and click “Create a new filter“. Put the email address you want to be able to filter in the “To:” field and click continue. Then check the box next to “Apply the label” and choose “New label” from the dropdown. That’s it. Type the name of the label and you’re done.

Update: The new/better way to do this is with google apps.

Published by

Josh Betz

Code Wrangler for VIP & Wisconsin Alum.

47 thoughts on “Using Gmail for GoDaddy Email”

  1. There’s one small hitch: your personal email address is still present in the full email headers.

    I spent a good while yesterday experimenting with the exact setup you described, sending custom-domain messages from my Gmail account to my Yahoo account.

    Sure enough, even though Yahoo displayed my custom domain name on the From: line, when I expanded the headers I still saw my personal gmail address embedded within. Not good if you want that to remain private.

    1. Yeah, that’s true. I guess that could be a problem, but I don’t think there are a whole lot of people that look at the full headers of their email. I wasn’t worried about keeping my gmail address private, so not a big deal for me.

      If you were interested in keeping your gmail address private there is a little work around that I’ve thought of to keep it private. You could create a new gmail account, just for forwarding custom-domain email to and answer all of your email through that.

      Then, if you don’t want to have to switch accounts just to get your email you could get your email from that account through POP3 in gmail and just monitor that account and login when you have email to answer. OR, you could also forward your email from your regular gmail account to that address and get all of your email there. That way you could send email from your regular account through that address and still keep you address private.

      Hopefully that works for you. Thanks for your input.

  2. Did you get a lengthy “(Pending Setup: validating MX record)” message on your GoDaddy ‘Forwarding Plans’ page after setting your Gmail address as the forwarding address? I setup my forwarding address several hours ago and mail is not forwarding, so I’m guessing that message is a sign of something going on behind the scenes…

    1. Yeah, that’s probably just something going on with GoDaddy. If the problem persists, you should get in touch with tech support and see if they know what’s going on.

  3. Thanks for this tutorial, worked like a charm. Just what I was looking for.

  4. You need to also make sure that you are setting the option in Gmail that sends mail through the SMTP servers of godaddy/your domain and not through gmail. This option is available in the Settings?Accounts tab in Gmail. If you dont, if the recipient views your email headers, it will clearly show you are using Gmail for handling the email, and not a mail client (that is more usual for company name domain email type of things)

  5. I've been using godaddy with gmail and its the perfect solution for me as a financial consultant on the road. Combined with my iPhone im constantly contactable.

  6. Can you please tell me how to hide that gmail address….. Please 🙂


    1. You're going log into Gmail and go to Settings>Accounts and Import. Then you're going to go to this page (if you're on GoDaddy) and go down around step 7. Along with the settings for godaddy's general smtp settings, there's a link to help you find your SMTP settings.

      Now, back in Gmail, you're going to go to "edit info" for the email address in question and go through until it asks if you want to send mail through Gmail's SMTP or yours. You'll obviously want to pick yours and enter the settings that you get from GoDaddy.

      If I wasn't specific enough, let me know.

  7. When I try to set my godaddy address to forward to my gmail, it tells me the forwarding address is already in use.

    How do I set it so that all my godaddy email to my current address forwards?

    1. If you've already got that address setup in godaddy, you'll have to delete it and set it up again as a forward.

  8. I ran into same problem as Matt Mitchell and deleted my email account and set up as a forwarding account bc of the 'already in use' problem.

    Now I don't know how to check that forwarding account to click on the confirmation email from gmail?

    I tried to set up email account, and that is now 'already in use.' Kind of going in circles.

    Any help greatly appreciated.


    1. You shouldn't have to confirm anything for setting up the email forward, only for the confirmation email. If you're not getting the confirmation email in your inbox that means the forward isn't working correctly.

      I just wrote up a new post about a better way to do this with google apps.

      1. I also don't want the per­sonal email address is present in the full email headers, or to see "on behalf of".

        Problem is that if you only have the address set up as an email forward from GoDaddy then there is no password to give to Gmail to finish the SMTP settings because there is no actual email account there.

        But if you set up an email account with GoDaddy then you get the ‘already in use' error if you then try to set up email forwarding too. And there is no way to directly forward from the GoDaddy email account that I can see. Only option is to pull emails using POP3 I guess.

        Don't really want to do the Google Apps thing…

        1. You should be able to setup an email account with GoDaddy using a different user name. Gmail just needs an email address on that domain to authenticate with SMTP, it doesn't necessarily have to be the same email address you're sending from.

          1. Hi. I know this is an old topic but I’m stuck here. since the go daddy account is just a forward, no username and password so gmail can’t complete it. I tried another godaddy email account for a username and password, but whenever I try, it wouldn’t go through. I entered the correct SMTP out and port with no luck. I appreciate the help. thanks

  9. I am working my way through this process. I have a free gmail account and wanted to use my personal domain. As I understand it, changing the MX at godaddy is only applicable to a Google Apps paid account, correct?

    When I attempt to set up the Send As using godaddy as the outgoing smtp, I always get a message saying it takes too long for godaddy to respond and then fails. The godaddy rep says the port numbers in gmail are NOT all correct. She recommended using port 80, not 25 for nonSSL connections, but port 80 is not an option in the drop down list. For SSL, she recommended port 465 which is available, so that is what I am going to use.

    I'm still waiting for my MX records to reset (they are in pending on godaddy) after having set them to the google ones this morning. Once that is done, I'll be able to test the POP3/Send As/Godaddy SMTP approach. Best

  10. I just set it up with Google Apps free edition and pointed everything to Google with MX and CNAME and records. There's easy instructions in Google Apps Help.

    1. Okay, thank you for the information. Since I've only used the free gmail account in the past, I didn't realize that there is a Standard (free) addition of google apps. I now see how I can now use the MX records to connect to that.

      In the meantime, I started pulling email from godaddy last night using POP3 into gmail and using the Send As feature to use godaddy's smtp outgoing mail server so no gmail headers are included in my messages. Looks to be working just fine.

      The error messages I reported in my previous post regarding godaddy not responding to the gmail request when setting up the Send As, was caused by using the wrong name for the outbound server (shame on me for using the default provided on the screen).

      One more question: I assume that one of the disadvantages of using the POP3 method is that it introduces a lag in receiving mail since it goes to the godaddy mailbox first and then periodically get pulled by gmail. Would using google apps with the google mx records completely eliminate this lag? Thanks again.

      1. First of all, the best way to get the mail into your gmail account without doing it with google apps would be to setup a forwarding account on godaddy. To do this you'll need to delete your current account first and recreate it as a forwarding account. A forwarding account would just send the mail straight to your gmail account so you don't have to wait for POP3 to get the mail.

        That being said, Google Apps would also eliminate this lag. There is honestly no reason not to use Google Apps at this point. Since you end up changing the DNS, you use Google Apps as your mail server instead of the godaddy servers. If you still want to get all of your email in your current gmail account you can forward the mail from within google apps.

        I did a write-up on this:

  11. Sounds like good advice, I will make the switch to google apps Standard edition.

    I originally used the forwarding method, but needed the ability to reply using my personal domain name. I could not see how to configure gmail to Send As when forwarding was used. I'd be curious to know if that is possible, notwithstanding your previous point about using google apps is the preferred method. Thanks for sharing.

    1. It’s definitely possible. I wrote about it in this article:

      Now your going to login to the Gmail account you forwarded the address to. In order to send email from that address you need to go to “Settings“, “Accounts“, and add the address under “Send Mail as:“. This will send verification to that email address to make sure you can send mail from that account. Make sure you change the “When receiveing as message:” value to “Reply from the same address the message was sent to“.

  12. Thanks for the great advice. I was am trying to add the email address that I have now have forwarding into my gmail account on my iphone and its not letting me send messages from that account. I can't figure out how to make it work because when I try to add an account on the iphone it requires the Incoming and outgoing Mail server information and password which I do not have because there is no other inbox besides my gmail. Any help would be greatly appreciated

    1. You won’t be able to add them on your iPhone. If you want to be able to send mail from those accounts on the iPhone you’ll have to use mobile gmail. I would just go to on the phone and save it to the desktop.

  13. How can I set up outgoing e-mail "Go-Daddy" to notify me when receipient opens the e-mail like my G-mail does?


  14. Hi!I have a proble with my Godaddy webmail.I can send e-mails to everyone but i cannot receive.Each time someone sends to a message appears to him that ”Delivery fails permanently”.However,i fixed MX records to accept gmail.But i want my webmail to accept every e-mail from anyone e-mail service.For example,i would like to receive e-mails to my web-mail from Facebook or Twitter.How can i do this?

  15. Hi,

    Great post and very well explained even for those of us who aren't very tech savvy – thanks!

  16. Hello, Thank you for these instructions on setting up my gmail to be able to receive my godaddy account email. This was very helpful.

  17. I cannot figure out out how to forward my godaddy email to my mobileme email account – please help.

    1. When you setup the forward, just send it to your email address. I'm guessing you won't be able to send mail from that address through Mobile Me though.

  18. The GoDaddy pages are very cluttered if You ask me. You however gave a very good explanation! Thank You!

  19. godaddy website is so hard to use – but you answered my question, thanks so much!! you rock!

  20. Awesome tutorial, I go to this every time I set up a new email. Thanks!

  21. I have a Godaddy email on my domain name and I am using Gmail MX REcords on it. The webmail is working perfectly fine but when I am trying to configure it on my Android Email Client on Moto XT 502 Quench, it does not work. Can you please suggest me what to use as the incoming and outgoing server details along with ports to make this possible? I need this to work badly. Thanks.

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