You can no longer attach your domain to Gmail for free as you could do a year or so ago. Now it's called Google for Business and also includes Google Drive, Google Calendar and more. It's all beautiful except for one thing: it's now not free. I just need mail, one address, nothing else.

Is there still a way to do it for free for a new domain?

I've seen some workarounds, but they seem to be outdated, so I'd like to know if it's possible to use an alternate method or not.

If there's no way to have it, maybe there's a good alternative to have email address on my own domain attached to an external mail service?

Having a mail server on my server or paying €3/month just for mail isn't as good as a free option.


6 Answers 6


Depending on your domain registrar (or maybe you have hosting/email?) you can forward an email address (eg. [email protected]) to your gmail account. Gmail can then be configured to send mail as [email protected].

Or, if you actually have a hosted mailbox for [email protected] then you can get gmail to download (POP3) mail from this mailbox.

Either way, you can use gmail to manage your email.

However, a slight caveat with the send-mail-as approach (by default at least) is that it is sent via gmail's servers (by default) and this is indicated to the recipient in the form of a Sender mail header (which might appear visually as something like "sent via [email protected]" in the recipients email client). But otherwise it does work quite well.

If, however, you already have your own external (SMTP) mail server through which you can send email for your domain, but just wish to use Gmail to manage your email then you can use your own SMTP server to send email. This avoids the Sender header being set and is entirely transparent to the recipient. The recipient will be unaware you are using Gmail - which is now simply an email client.


If you have an existing domain that is hosted by Gmail under the free program, you can add another domain that will provide you with what you want. Just log into your account and Choose "Add a domain or a domain alias" the choose "Add another domain" in the dialog that pops up.


  • This is excellent! I know this won't be of help to many people reading this question, but as someone who already had a Google Apps account from when it was free, this was perfect for me. I should note that the dashboard no longer looks like the screenshot above, but if you search for Domain alias in the search bar at the top, you'll still be able ot find the option.
    – Vincent
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 7:54
  • Note: You can no longer add a secondary domain to the free 'legacy' edition. You can now only add aliases. The secondary domain option has since been removed :(
    – Gichamba
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 8:00

Once you have either forwarded your email from your own domainname to Google or used POP3 or IMAP to import messages, you can define how you want to SEND your messages by going to Settings, Accounts and Import, Send mail as. Once defined and confirmed, you can then select under which account you want to send the messages. I manage 5 different e-mail names which I can send from Gmail. (True if you look in the header you could see Google...)


You can do what you are asking with Outlook.com. The link to it is: http://domains.live.com/

I have done this for the last 2 years and it’s worked great.


You can use pdd.yandex.ru for that purpose.

It's a Russian service with unlimited mail storage + 40GB of cloud disk space.

It's available in English, and it's free.


A simple solution if you already have a server (e.g., VPS) is to set up your own forwarding / relay mail server:

  1. Set up a mail server program (for example Postfix) to forward incoming e-mail to Gmail, and
  2. Set up Gmail to route outgoing e-mail through your mail server.

Here's a quick tutorial: http://seasonofcode.com/posts/custom-domain-e-mails-with-postfix-and-gmail-the-missing-tutorial.html

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