Gmail_logoThis may be old news to some, but it was new news to me. I had a customer service person tell me that someone had an email address very similar to mine, only theirs was all caps and that I should take my complaint to Gmail and ask them why they allow this. (Someone was using my email address and I was getting their “order receipts”, so I had asked the company to please put an end to this). After shaking my head for a bit, I decided I’d better reply to that customer service person with a link from Gmail explaining that case doesn’t affect an email address, [email protected] is the same as [email protected].

In looking for a link to send, I came across another great tidbit of info from Gmail. Not only does case not matter, but dots don’t either. I do use a dot between my first and last name in my gmail address, that’s how I signed up. Little did I know I can easily drop that dot or add more anywhere between any letters and still get my email!

Sometimes you may receive a message sent to an address that looks like yours but has a different number or arrangement of periods. While we know it might be unnerving if you think someone else’s mail is being routed to your account, don’t worry: both of these addresses are yours.

Gmail doesn’t recognize dots as characters within usernames, you can add or remove the dots from a Gmail address without changing the actual destination address; they’ll all go to your inbox, and only yours. In short:

All these addresses belong to the same person. You can see this if you try to sign in with your username, but adding or removing a dot from it. You’ll still go to your account.

If you get mail that seems to be intended for someone else, it’s likely that the sender entered the wrong address, just like if you’ve ever dialed a wrong phone number for someone. In these cases, we suggest contacting the original sender or website when possible to alert them to the mistake.

One last thing: Google Apps does recognize dots. If you’d like to have a dot in your username, please ask your domain administrator to add your preferred username as a nickname.

So basically, [email protected] is the same as [email protected] and [email protected]

I learn something new everyday.

blog-emailimageIf you own a website, then you probably have contact information on your website. That’s great! It’s wonderful when your website visitors can contact you with questions or issues they may have about your company, products, service or site. But you, as a site owner, need to go one step further and check that email! It’s quite aggravating as a site visitor to spend time crafting a message, hit send and then wait, wait, wait, wait and give up on ever getting a response.

Don’t leave your visitors hanging. Take the time to check your mail, even your spam box at least weekly. Send out a reply of some sort. Not answering is a big turn off. I’m often tempted to not support businesses that can send out a simple reply to questions. I don’t have a lot of time to spend making phone calls, I much prefer to shoot out a quick email when I have a question. The problem seems to be getting answers.

Tip: If you have no intention of answering emails, then don’t put an email address or contact form on your site. If you’re going to put that out there, then take a day each week to sit down and go through and answer emails. Your business can only benefit!

gmaillogoOne feature that Gmail is lacking is the ability to send an email to multiple addresses for a single contact when using groups. Say you have a soccer team, each child has two parents with seperate email addresses. You put the child’s name in your contact list, add each parent’s email address, then create a group to send mass emails to your entire team. Gmail only includes the first (primary) email address per contact. You need to include both email addresses. Previously, you needed to add each child in multiple times so that each email address is seen as a primary. I have a simple fix to keep your contact list from growing too large!

In the first email line type in your first address. Follow that address, in the same line, with >, < then include your second address. It should look something like this [email protected]>, <[email protected]. I know, Gmail doesn’t like that when saving, but do it anyway. When Gmail adds your contact address to the To: line, the address is placed in brackets and seperated by a comma. In this way, you’re tricking Gmail into seeing two different addresses in the To: line. Gmail will automatically open the brackets on the first address and close the brackets on the second, or final. You just need to put the middle part in there so that both addresses are recognized as valid when the email is sent. Now, add your contact to the group you need and you’re all set.

Go ahead! I know you want to try it. Add yourself as a contact, add two emails for yourself (I know we all have a bazillion). Click your name from the contact list and email yourself.