Our Management Consultants Recommended That We Kill Our Free Email Plan; We're Increasing It Instead

When it comes to hosted email options for your business, there is not a whole lot to choose from unless you want to compromise on quality. There’s Microsoft’s Office 365. There’s Google Apps. And there’s Zoho Mail. We think Zoho Mail is better, but then again, we’re kind of biased.

And if you’re a small business, your options are even more limited. Until some time ago, Google Apps had a free edition. It started with unlimited users and decreased then gradually until they finally canceled it. Microsoft chose to never give anything away for free (shocker, I know!).

Now, here’s something we haven’t told anyone: When Google Apps Free Edition went the way of the dodo, Zoho Mail registrations shot up through the roof. Want some proof?

Of course, I was just being facetious with the title. We didn’t hire a management consulting firm, because we already know what they would say. Their recommendation would be: ”Well, your two other competitors don’t have a Free plan, so why would you? Don’t offer anything free now, and instead make more money.”.

Instead of spending money with the consulting firm, we decided to spend that money with you, our users. Starting today, we’re increasing our Free plan for Zoho Mail, making it even better and making it completely free for up to 5 users. When we say completely free, we not only mean that you pay nothing for it, but also that you don’t have to deal with ads. Free and ad-free.

Even though Zoho Mail now is the only viable option for small businesses looking for a great -and free- hosted email solution, we’re not backing away from our commitment to our small business friends.



84 Replies to Our Management Consultants Recommended That We Kill Our Free Email Plan; We're Increasing It Instead

  1. Does Zoho mail free plan has an expiration? In a year or 2? Pls somebody tell me if my Zoho mail free plan will be expired soon... Thanks.

  2. Thank you, Zoho mail is the next great thing after Google Apps free edition. Atleast can get something for free these days.

  3. I'm not sure about transferring domain management over to ZOHO. Register.com is fine. If I use ZOHO Mail can I continue to use Apple Mail and Outlook when I want to?

  4. Thanks to Zoho...!!! I am a domain name consultant and e-mail administrator from India. Before testing Zoho Mail, I assumes only Microsoft, Yahoo, and Google are the only best business solutions. Now I recommend Zoho Mail for small business, Not Microsoft, Yahoo, and Google. I recommend Zoho will introduce price in Indian Rupees.

  5. As a Thunderbird user thanks to Microsoft deleting Outlook Express with windows 7, I am using free POP3/SMTP accounts with @gmail.com, @ymail.com, @live.com, @live.co.uk and until 1st November @o2.co.uk. I have just added @zoho.com to my list of email accounts. When used via Thunderbird there is absolutely no difference between any of them.

  6. Hi,i created a Zoho Mail test account a few years ago,but ZM did not work right in my web BROWSER,so i stopped using that ZM test account.Please LIST the web BROWSERSthat work well with Zoho Mail.Thanks

  7. Your announcement was just awesome! I've loved Zoho from the very beginning and am thrilled with each new announcement and improvement. So direct, so simple, so uncomplicated! Bravo Zoho Team!

  8. Hi, You realise that emails were never designed for large attachments, and large emails cause all sorts of issues, (server bandwidth, receivers bandwidth (downloading very large files on mobile?) not too mention backup and backup storage issues. You should not be sending anything via email that's more than a couple of MB.
    There are some great alternatives, some paid, some free. Look up file sharing. I use http://wetransfer.com " rel="nofollow">wetransfer.com
    I have no affiliation with either Zoho or wetransfer.

  9. Thanks Zohomail. You give me the credibility that I deserve with your free option. You are building a customer, when my company grows it will have a soft spot for Zoho!!! Kudos for the good work

  10. I recommend zoho to all of my friends and clients, and I will continue to do so. Your company and service is fantastic.

  11. Zoho mail is one stop-by for all your mail requirement. best for "personal branding" and small biz. websites.UI is neat, quick and the best part is two way sync with zimbra and other devices.Thanks Team Zoho.Best wishesVivek

  12. Awesome news! Not much is for free in the world these days and I'm so pleased Zoho are doing this. I'm only a new user but from now on will be recommending it to anyone who requires email set up. If you are happy to keep the emails free, I'm sure there will be many of us happy to pay for other things from your company. Cheers!

  13. I just registered for out domain www.indistop.com for the free version of zoho.
    To tell you guys, I am very impressed with zoho. I am also using google for email hosting for some other domain, but zoho is quite refreshing.

  14. Team Zoho....!!!!!
    Thank you all for providing such a wonderful facility and making it free. You have helped us a lot...!!!!!

  15. Though I agree with you that unlike other companies, Zoho is more customer-centric, I must also point out that you've got your facts wrong. Microsoft DOES offer a free email hosting service. And much,much more than Zoho or Google Apps. I know because am using it for my personal website(overkill really). You can access the hosted mail via the normal http://outlook.com " rel="nofollow">outlook.com interface. And they offer up to 500 free accounts. And I've heard some people telling that one can always get more accounts by writing to them, once the first 500 are exhausted. They just don't publicize this. Please get your facts right.Anyways, the Zoho interface is just simple and neat. Would've moved here if not for the low amount for free space offered. I want something future-proof and I cannot afford to pay right now and 5 GB for free seems low compared to what competitors are offering for free.

  16. I really like Zoho Mail, I have customers with other web mails and they are lost in ads and banners, some others in a really poor interface.
    If there are somebody out there doesnt know Zoho Mail, I think you have to give you the chance to know Zoho Mail and you will keep it as strategic business tool as we did.

  17. Dear Team,
    unfortunatly I don't understand all at all what is going on. I have had until yesterday the possibility to sign in into Zoho Free Mail, singed in with my name and pass word and now I can't open anymore and I don't understand all of your information.Pls. tell me what to do since I was always very satisfied with the possibilties to mail etc. etc.
    Best wishesT. Frankl

  18. The service is great but the web client needs a bit of work. Here's a short list:1) Conversation view for emails (coming from google apps this has been the hardest thing to adapt to).
    2) Autocomplete when typing email addresses in the To field for people I have emailed but do not have saved in the address book.
    3) Works fine on Firefox on Mac but tends to crash on Chrome.Everything else is great, service is reliable and has never gone down.

  19. Well Rodrigo, what can i say?
    You made my day!Thank you for an excellent service that just got better, for you seriusness and your commitment of honest growth. I join the other saying. It will pay off. A great win-win situation :)

  20. Thanks, Zoho!I wouldn't mind paying for it, but I appreciate that it's free and that it's ad-free.But what I appreciate even more is dealing with an organisation that doesn't think the universe revolves around it!Go Zoho!Merriin

  21. I started with zoho last month because my blog need only 2 emails to keep contact with readers and this is just great news even if in this time i will not use all 5 boxes.Zoho team, thank you and it's nice to see that we can find more open minds around, not only open source and Linux communities.

  22. Smashing! We actually pay for plenty of Zoho services and I recommend to all the small businesses I work with. So in a way you win out in the end.

  23. You guys are awesome! Give new business owners a lot of tools that help the whole process so smooth. :)Thank you!

  24. Why I came to Zoho Mail:
    *5GB storage
    *wanted to leave Gmail (using DuckDuckGo instead of Google, needed email alternative as well)Why Zoho Mail is awesome (besides the above):
    *"smarter inerface" - (message opens in same page, search opens new tab, eliminating needs for reloads)
    *it seems that Gmail is imitating some of its cooler features (the above, others)
    *customizable app-list, eliminating clutter, improving organizational functionalityIf I were a business I would certainly pay for and use the full services. Thanks for keeping Zoho Mail free for regular users like myself.I recommend it to anyone who cares for a more human experience.

  25. My initial draw to Zoho Mail was that it was ad-free. I use add-ons to eliminate tracking and advertising, perform my searches using the DuckDuckGo engine, and switching my email from Gmail was the last logical step for me.My main criteria, besides the above, was that it provide substantial online data storage and that it be free (as in price). I also found that the user interface of Zoho mail application is a very smooth and integrated experience. I was pleasantly surpised by how opening a message from the inbox pops up within the same page (which Gmail is now imi-plementing) or how a search pops open a new tab (again, eliminating the need to reload the page).If I were a business, I would certainly use Zoho Mail to host company accounts, and recommend it to anyone who wants to use a service that is more respecting of its users as people first.Thanks for keeping it free for regular users!

  26. Just a shout out of appreciation. Google mail getting cluttered with MORE ads than ever and I am reaching a breaking point. Thanks for being there and being committed to understanding there is a difference with simple, intermediate, and complex needs.
    With all the bull about "the cloud" (just acreage of servers), the average user does not realize they are being data mined for profit and still being subjected to less alternatives, less services, and less freedom.
    Kudos to you for offering an alternative without compromise.

  27. Wow, this makes Zoho even more awesome. I am bulding my SaaS startup using Zoho mail, and I am looking forward to the day that I outgrow the free plan.Thanks guys!

  28. Thank you Zoho! I really appreciate you guys stepping up to the plate and giving the small businesses that I serve a viable alternative to Google Apps. I think it was a questionable business decision on Google's part to do away with the free ("lite") version of their business email offering. It was kind of short sighted if you ask me. Many small businesses will be big businesses some day. You are smart to share your technology with them now in hopes that one day they will need to (and want to) pay you for your expanded services. Nicely played.Kudos!

  29. I applaud your approach. By offering an excellent, ad-free email service for free, you’re giving us every reason to come to you when we need excellent, ad-free, value-added services that cost money. Since you’re showing yourselves to be great service providers who are committed to an ethical stance, you’re showing us that you are people who merit our trust and patronage. I can heartily recommend Zoho to everyone I know, because of this. May Zoho continue to grow, so that your business model proves to all that such values are a pathway to enduring success. THANK YOU.

  30. I LOOOOVE you guys!! You are easily the best email service out there! Especially because there are no annoying ads to deal with! My email work load is so much more efficient without the distractions!! Thank you for being awesome! :)

  31. As a domain owner and web administrator using google, I wonder what obvious advantages id have switching to zoho. I already use zoho, in fact, longer than google. My main concern is google drive is a very inexpensive tool I find extremely useful. Zoho seems more versatile overall for those who have website content ready to be hosted. I don't mind paying for services, if they're competitive, and i love the underdog. I have a new domain name with content ready to be published. Can you tell me what tools i'd have that would beat google? It is media rich, mostly audio, and html five. Online storage is vital, and I am really eager to develope a mobile app.SincerelyBobby

  32. Hi, Zoho!Respect for all the services that you are running and supporting the SMB not only with services but also with a knowledge how to manage a business. Your idea to provide a 5 user free plan is great and will be one of the reasons to switch to the paid version of the mail + zoho crm + zoho websites. Just keep to your principles and know that the money are not the aim their are just one of the tools to get to the aim.

  33. It has been awhile since I joined Zoho, but I honestly have to say, IT'S GREAT!Thank you!All the best to Zoho - always!

  34. This is fantastic news! I love the idea of supporting growing businesses - after all, you're building the loyalty and giving them a helping hand on their way to greatness. As they grow and develop, they will be able to move onto the paid subscription service. Everyone's a winner.Thank you for your brilliant products. I recommend them to my clients.

  35. Hi Rodrigo,I was really excited to get going with Zoho for our small record label business. Here is our website: www.airsite.fm. Our site developer linked our Zoho accounts with our website and we have notified our important contacts about our new addresses (with Zoho). After all of this effort, it is disappointing to experience this on going problem we are having with being unable to send larger files. You see, for the type of business we are in, it is regular practice to send large artwork and music files. I am unable to send the typical kinds of emails that I am accustomed to sending with services such as Yahoo. We could easily use yahoo as we have ben for many years. Though I was really sold on all that Zoho had to offer. However, I am considering making a switch as I have learned that 20mb is the maximum capacity that I can send in one email, and there is no upgrade available to increase this limit. I was more than willing to pay Zoho for the increase, so that we could enjoy the ability to send art & music files. I have even tried to compress files, but it doesn't help. And Zoho offers no upgrades. Do you think this will change in the near future? Is this something Zoho is working on or even concerned about?

  36. You're getting closer! We need seven email accounts!! Keep up the great work! Although we just went with a much larger server space for the same price for our domain, we like your apps and setup ... and will keep an eye on Zoho!

  37. Currently I use the email service alone. When business begins to grow, I will not need to change.
    I always recommend and I will continue recommending Zoho Service for those who need be productive.Thank you and congratulations.

  38. Zoho Mail, in the Zoho Small Business Suite, is simply a fantastic option for small businesses. I have used the service for years now and have not been let down.

  39. Hi Rodrigo,as a start-up company with little resources to invest (money) we thank you for the free account zoho mail.
    Zoho Mail, is already paying off and Zoho also has a great set of tools to use and explore.Keep the good work and we are hopping to grow and start making some money so we can go pro!Thank you,

  40. Thank you for supporting small businesses. I like to use Zoho mail. Zoho mail is powerful when it is integrated with other Zoho products.Thank's again.

  41. Great news, Rodrigo. I'm a Google ex-pat and definitely enjoying my time with Zoho so far. Really solid service.

  42. You guys are awesome, Im using the free plan but will most definitely upgrade within the next two months.
    Thanks for your awesome service and commitment to your users.

  43. All i have to offer you is gratitude. Your mail hosting has made my life very simplified and well organised.
    So once again thank you.

  44. There is a good reason Zoho are and will keep being a success and growing strongly.When you try and experience the sheer stability and technical excellence of the free email solution and then check out what business options are there to integrate you can only know that you are making a good choice.Very few service providers would get such a truthful comment. In all my time, Zoho has never let me down.

  45. I set up my small business's emails with Zoho after Google Apps curtailed their free plans and I have to say I am very impressed. Thanks so much!

  46. Not only is Zoho free but the set-up is so much simpler and well guided.
    I'm asking all my friends to move even their free Google Apps for Business to Zoho
    This is going to come back to you guys in a very good way.

  47. Am glad there still people who still understand that even small businesses need a chance at success, I just started using your service after Google changed their minds about looking after the under privilege and I can say proudly that so far I have no regrets, infact if you guys are ok with it I think I will make podcasts showing visitors to my site how they can set up their own and also have linkbacks to your sign up page, keep it free please

  48. You guys Rock!! I am bringing over my clients to Zoho as it so so convenient! Why would you have a desktop email client in today's world?

  49. Zoho e-mail is the best I have ever used...It is a great help in business and worked well as a personal e-mail...Hope Zoho mail will continue to be available for free, because I am using Zoho opportunities for many years...I am very happy with ZOHO.

  50. Zoho mail has always rocked. It's a great service and those of us who use it appreciate it's quality and value. Even when others offered free email service many of us chose Zoho Mail. Thanks for making such a great service and keeping to your commitment to offer it free.

  51. I genuinely appreciate the service that Zoho provides, and I want to make it clear that I am not unwilling to pay for those services. I believe that Zoho has made the right decision for garnering more good will and respect from its users, who will happily become paying customers when we individually require more than the free plan offers. What really makes Zoho special is not how great the free plan is (which it is!), it is the lack of ads and the dedication to user privacy that Zoho promotes by example. In the age of Google and Facebook surveillance and a woeful deterioration of privacy and security, I am hopeful that Zoho will continue to grow and be the strong alternative for those who want something better. I encourage Zoho to continue to make their quality services their product and not its users' data.

  52. At i-Dynamics we get increasing amount of queries for a non MS email client and always recommend Zoho. Heartily approve of your announcement

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