Sending mass emails in Gmail is possible but hardly ideal.
There are many limitations and issues that make Gmail less than a perfect option for that. This is especially true if you are wondering how to send a group email in Gmail for commercial purposes.
Below, we’ll take a look at all the pros and cons of sending bulk emails from Gmail. We will also look at the option of using email automation software for mass email marketing.
In the end, this article will hopefully help you choose the right option for you. But, of course, it all depends on your specific needs.
Benefits of Sending Bulk Emails With Gmail
Most people use Gmail for personal communication rather than commercial purposes.
But there’s one clear benefit of promoting your products and service through Gmail, it’s free.
This makes bulk emailing with Gmail an attractive option for newer digital marketers. And while this is indeed an option, it does have its drawbacks.
Before we discuss that, let’s see how to send mass emails in Gmail.
How to Send Mass Emails in Gmail
You can start sending bulk emails in Gmail in just three easy steps:
- Create a Label;
- Add Contacts to a List;
- Send a Mass Message.
Create a Label
Most email providers organize emails in folders such as:
- Inbox Folder
- Spam/Junk Folder
- Sent Folder
In Gmail, the equivalent of a folder is a Label.
You can use labels to:
- Organize Tasks and track their status
- Organize Emails into sub-labels.
- Identify email that needs follow-up.
- Identify emails that can be read later and so much more.
You could also use Gmail filters for this purpose. However, labels are much more practical when it comes to managing multiple lists.
To create a Label in Gmail follow these steps:
- Open Gmail
- Click on the gear Icon in the top-right corner of your screen. This will open a drop-down menu. Click on the “See all settings” tab.
- Click the Labels Tab, then scroll to the labels section towards the bottom of the page.
- Click Create New Label.
- Type the Label Name and hit create.
Your label name can be up to 225 characters in length. From here you can also create nested labels or sub-folders.
Once you’ve done that, you can start adding contacts to the list.
Add Contacts to a List
Now that you’ve created a label, it is time to add contacts to the list.
Step 1: Open Google Apps and Click on Contacts:
Step 2: On the next page, select to create a new contact or import from a CSV file.
Step 4: Create or upload your contacts.
Step 5: Reopen your contact list and add your contacts to your label.
Now we move on to the final step, composing your message and then sending it to all contacts in your label.
Send Your Mass Message With Gmail
We’ve come to the third and final episode of the “How to send mass email in Gmail” mini-series.
You can send your mass message with the label you’ve created by clicking on the Compose button in the top-left corner of the screen and entering the name of your label in the “TO” field:
There you have it. You’ve successfully sent a mass email using Gmail.
Something To Consider
When sending a bulk email, all contacts inside of your label will be able to see who you are mailing to.
To prevent this, simply click on the Bcc (blind carbon copy) option before sending.
This way, your recipients will be able to read your email but will not see who else it was sent to.
Issues You’ll Face Sending Bulk Emails in Gmail
So now that we know how to send mass emails in Gmail you might be wondering…
Why don’t more people do this?
That’s a fair question.
The answer is simple.
Gmail isn’t designed for sending promotional emails in bulk. As a result, there are many restrictions that make it a less-than-ideal option for businesses.
Let’s look at a few.
500 Emails Per Day Limit
Google only allows you to send 500 emails per 24-hour time period.
This might be fine for smaller businesses, but larger companies are likely to reach that limit quickly.
This can severely slow your business down.
There are only two ways to get around this:
1) Use Gmail and send 500 emails today, then send the other 500 the next day.
2) Pay Google every time you want to email more than 500 people with Gmail.
If you are okay with this, then, by all means, use Gmail to send bulk emails. But, if you need more flexibility, there are some other options you might want to consider.
Deliverability is the holy grail of email marketing.
The success of your campaigns depends on how many recipients receive and engage with your emails. And that comes down to how many of your emails get delivered to your recipients’ inboxes.
Gmail is not exactly known for high deliverability rates for bulk emails.
This is because Gmail’s spam filter is very sensitive and tends to quarantine a significant percentage of emails.
This means many of your customers may never even see your emails at all, which diminishes your potential earnings.
Email Attachments Limited To 25 MB
Another disadvantage of Gmail’s mass emailing feature is the size restrictions. You only have a limit of 25 MB for email attachments, which might be too small for larger documents.
This means that if you want to send an ebook as part of your marketing campaign, you’ll have to split it into smaller parts or resort to another email service provider.
Again, this is also less than ideal, but it may be acceptable for smaller businesses that only send out emails every now and then.
Unable To Customize Emails
Gmail gives you limited design options for your emails. You can’t use custom fonts or colors, which means no branding either.
There is a workaround, but it takes three steps to implement.
First, you will have to add CSS code from the email service provider to your Gmail email’s HTML.
Then you’ll have to add inline styles and, finally, create a custom style sheet for your business.
This is not a lot of work, but it’s one extra step that most people aren’t willing to take. Unless they are tech geniuses that is.
In addition, it’s very hard to add personalization to your emails making it very hard to speak to your subscribers individually.
You’ll have to send one-size-fits-all emails to everyone on your lists and that can make you look very uncaring.
Limited Tracking And Reporting Systems
Gmail doesn’t shine in the tracking department, either.
It only allows you to track how many recipients opened and clicked your message and how many bounced, in addition to how many people unsubscribed.
In other words, Gmail’s built-in analytics are of limited use at best. They offer a bare-bones approach to email statistics and how your emails perform in terms of opens and clicks. But this is pretty much it.
More detailed reports are needed to analyze the performance of your campaigns in order to make data-driven adjustments.
Zero Automation and CRM Capabilities
Your email marketing strategy must be interactive and flexible. Sending the same email to everyone on your list won’t get you good results.
Instead, your subscribers should only receive messages they want or appropriate emails based on how they interact with your brand and campaigns.
Let’s say you send an email asking subscribers to fill out a form. If they do fill out this form then sending them follow-up messages with the same call to action will be a waste of time.
Since there is no way to track engagements with Gmail, you’ll just have to risk sending irrelevant emails to your subscribers.
Another issue you’ll face is the lack of automation.
Every time you want to add a new subscriber to your list or label you’ll have to do it all manually. You’ll face the same issue every time you wish to send an email as well.
There is just no way to automate the process. But, if you have a lot of time on your hands this might not be an issue.
Blocked For Spamming
Gmail can block your domain if you send out too many emails from a personal account. Spamming, the poor cousin of email marketing, strikes again!
Gmail has a couple of spam traps that might sound the alarm bells. You can’t just mass email all of your contacts without getting blacklisted by Google’s spam filters.
This is how it works:
If you send an email to someone who didn’t ask for it, Gmail suspects your message as spam.
If there are enough complaints, it will block your domain for a period of time.
Of course, how long the blacklisting lasts depends on how many people reported your email as spam. If you’re lucky, you might only get blacklisted for half an hour or so. But if you get a lot of complaints, it can last for months.
Gmail also conducts an IP reputation check on bulk senders to weed out those trying to bypass its anti-spam measures.
And if your domain fails the test, it will start labeling all your emails as spam! From there, all your future emails will bounce and won’t reach their recipients.
On the positive side, this only happens once you hit the cap, so you can always use Gmail to its full potential by sending out emails every day. However, if you want to email more than 500 people per day, your days of using Gmail are over.
Choosing An Email Autoresponder Instead
While Gmail is a great, attractive free emailing option, it is more suited for personal use.
The same can be said for other free email service providers such as Yahoo and Outlook.
So businesses and online professionals will need another option. In this case, an email automation platform (autoresponder) like Mailvio.
Autoresponders ensure that your email campaigns get delivered to your subscribers on time.
They also allow you to easily customize and personalize your emails for more targeted and branded outreach.
And through automation, your campaigns can be tailored to match your customers’ journey.
This saves you a ton of time and makes your campaigns far more effective.
There are many email autoresponders around and they vary in capabilities. But overall, a good autoresponder should do three things:
- Be Affordable
- Easy to Use
- And provide great deliverability rates.
Most email automation platforms tend to be pretty costly and lack functionality.
This is why Mailvio is one of the top autoresponders in digital marketing circles.
Built by digital marketers for digital marketers, it offers an impressive array of features for a handful of dollars:
So, if you ever need a great alternative to Gmail, be sure to sign up for Mailvio’s 7-day free trial and check it out for yourself.
So there you have it. You now know how to send mass emails in Gmail so go out and give it a try.
This may work really well if you have a small list of people that you need to contact often.
But, if you have a large list of subscribers then think about using an autoresponder instead. In our
opinion, Mailvio is the best option, both in terms of value for money and capabilities. Click here to see Mailvio in action.
Wishing you success in your next campaign!
Steven is the co-founder of Mailvio and oversees the operations and technical strategy and implementations. Steven has been an online entrepreneur since he was 14 years old and has been running SaaS companies for the last 10 years.