Would you like to improve email deliverability in just a few steps? By setting up Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) on your site, you can quickly fix email delivery issues with minimal setup. In this article, we’ll show you how to use the Other SMTP mailer in WP Mail SMTP to improve email delivery for your site.
- Setting Up WP Mail SMTP
- Configuring “Other SMTP” Settings
- Enabling Less Secure Apps
- Sending a Test Email
Note: The Other SMTP mailer is less secure than other mailer options because it stores your email login and password in your WordPress dashboard. Other WordPress administrators have access to this. Whenever possible, we recommend using one of WP Mail SMTP’s more secure options.
1. Setting Up WP Mail SMTP
Before we get started, be sure to install and activate the WP Mail SMTP plugin.
Once the plugin is installed, you’ll need to click on WP Mail SMTP in the left WordPress menu. This will open the plugin settings page. We’ll cover each of these settings in detail below.
This is the email address that all of your site’s emails will be sent from.
Note: Make sure to enter the same email address you will be using to send SMTP emails (your Yahoo, Gmail, etc email address).
We recommend that you also check the box labeled Force From Email. Since the From Emails from anything on your site that sends email must match this email address in order for SMTP to work, this will save you the trouble of editing the email settings throughout your site (in all form emails, etc).
By default, the From Name will be set to the site name. However, you can change this to any text you’d like.
You can also choose to Force From Name to apply this setting to emails site-wide.
We recommend checking the optional Return Path checkbox to Set the return-path to match the From Email. With this enabled, you’ll be emailed if any messages bounce as a result of issues with the recipient’s email.
In the Mailer field, you’ll need to select the Other SMTP option.
2. Configuring “Other SMTP” Settings
Now that you’ve selected Other SMTP as your mailer, a new section will appear named Other SMTP. In this section, you’ll need to enter specific details to connect your site to your email provider.
Each email provider requires slightly different SMTP configurations. If you’re not sure what settings to use, we’ve compiled a list of SMTP configurations for popular email providers below.
Note: For better security, we recommend adding SMTP Username and SMTP Password to your site’s configuration file using constants. Be sure to check out our constants guide for details.
Here are the SMTP settings you’ll need for the most popular email providers:
Gmail / G Suite SMTP Settings
Port: 587 (or 465 using SSL encryption)
Username: Your Gmail account email address (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org)
Password: Your Gmail account password
Hotmail / Live SMTP Settings
Username: Your Hotmail account email (e.g. email@example.com)
Password: Your Hotmail account password
Yahoo Mail SMTP Settings
Username: Your Yahoo Mail account email (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org)
Password: Your Yahoo Mail account password
Note: Please note you will need to enable less secure apps.
AOL SMTP Settings
Username: Your AOL screen name (e.g. john)
Password: Your AOL account password
Once these details are entered, be sure to click the Save Settings button.
3: Enabling Less Secure Apps
In order for SMTP to be used on your WordPress site, you will likely need to enable less secure apps on your email account. Below, we’ll show you how to do this within Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail/Live.
Enable Less Secure Apps in Gmail
To enable less secure apps on Gmail, log in to your Gmail or G Suite account.
Then, go to less secure apps by clicking this link. Next to Access for less secure apps select Turn on.
If you have Two Factor Authentication enabled, you will need to disable it before you can enable this option.
Note: Sometimes for security reasons Gmail may automatically block the sign-in used by SMTP, even with less secure apps enabled. When this happens, your recovery email address will be sent an email with a sign-in attempt warning (see below).
To remove this block, you’ll need to click the Review Your Devices Now button (or visit your account’s Recently Used Devices page) and follow the instructions to let Google know this was a legitimate login attempt.
Enable Less Secure Apps in Yahoo
To enable less secure apps on Yahoo, first log into your Yahoo account.
After logging in, click on this link to open your account’s security settings.
From here, you can turn on “Allow apps that use less secure sign-in”. After turning it on, the button color will be turned to green.
Enable Less Secure Apps in Live or Hotmail
If you’re using Live or Hotmail email account, you shouldn’t need to enable less secure apps on your account.
4. Sending a Test Email
Now that all of your SMTP settings are in place, the next step is to make sure everything is working correctly. To test this out, click on the Email Test tab on WP Mail SMTP’s settings page.
For the test email’s Send To field, you can enter any email address that you have access to.
Next, you can also choose whether you’d like to send an HTML or plain text email. Unless you’re certain that your site only sends plain text emails, we recommend leaving HTML set to ON.
When you’re ready, click the Send Email button.
After sending the email, you should see a success message.
If you check the inbox for the email address you entered, you should receive the email for this test. If you’re using Yahoo email, likely you won’t receive the test emails, or other site emails, instantly (it may take 5-10 minutes for emails to arrive in your inbox).
Note: If you have forms on your site, be sure to also test these emails specifically by submitting a couple of test submissions. That way you can be certain that these SMTP settings are applying to your forms.
That’s it! You’ve now configured SMTP on your WordPress site, and your site’s emails should start delivering successfully and reliably.
Next, would you like to keep a record of all emails sent out from your WordPress site? Be sure to check out our doc on setting up email logging so you can always check what emails have been sent.