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  • Google Apps for Domains

    I'm looking for other 3dCart customers' experiences with switching their email over to Google Apps for Domains.

    I wanted to double check the following:

    Is it free?

    Is it a simple request to get 3dcart to point to Google's mail servers?

    Anything else I should know or be wary of?

  • #2
    Kind of wondering the same thing...

    We currently use the slow, often "down", and limited storage SmarterMail that came with our 3D Carts. I'm really, really, really interested in switching our email to Google Apps for Business so that ALL of our emails are in one central location with a TON of storage space (25G vs. 500MB...HUGE DIFFERENCE!).

    Question for those who have made the switch to Google Apps (Gmail) for business...how hard is it to get the email to switch from being sent to SmarterMail to the Google Apps account? Any advice on how it's done?

    I'm worried that I won't do it correctly and I'll have emails lost in space...couldn't find a 3D Cart Knowledge Base article on this topic, unless I just missed it.

    Thanks in advance!
    James

    Edit: I know that Google Apps is not a free service (as originally asked by the forum user).

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    • #3
      We use GoogleApps for our mail and love it. However I can't remember the process for switching. We've never used 3DCart's Smarter Mail.

      The main thing is getting the MX record of your DNS (domain name) settings to point to Google. The ability to do this will depend on who hosts your DNS. Maybe 3DCart does it. Maybe your domain registrar does it. Maybe a third party does it.

      Here are some instructions on the changes that need to be made:
      Understand MX records - Google Apps Help

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      • #4
        Thanks cbsteven! I appreciate the insight into how you feel about the service as well (that helps since I have NO experience with Google Apps for Business).

        I live chatted with 3D Cart and their advice was:

        "You will have to acquire the MX Records from Google and then confirm it with us. Send it to [email protected]."

        So this will help with my weekend project.

        Thanks again,
        James

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        • #5
          I think the process to switch would be:
          Sign up for Google Apps, once the account is set up then:
          Contact 3DCart support with this page: MX record values - Google Apps Help

          Which gives the MX values. That should be everything you need to do.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by cbsteven View Post
            I think the process to switch would be:
            Sign up for Google Apps, once the account is set up then:
            Contact 3DCart support with this page: MX record values - Google Apps Help
            Correct. It's really easy. I've just sent screenshots of the MX records from previous hosts to Support and they change it over quickly.

            As for Google for business, it is no longer free but it is cheap, and the value is high considering everything you get:

            Pricing ? Google Apps for Business | United States

            The nice thing about this is that you can take it with you if you ever leave 3D Cart. That means you can retain your mail, your settings, your filters, documents, familiarity, user control, etc. regardless of where your domain hosting is.
            - Dean P. e-commerce and small business consulting

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            • #7
              Thank you both for the advice! I'm looking forward to having a much more robust and concentrated email system than we currently have (and @ only $5.00/month it seems like an incredible value).

              I'm just sick and tired of moving/deleting emails so often in SmarterMail since the 500MB storage is sucked up in an instant...not to mention the constant log-in log-out that we have to do with multiple domains/email accounts in SmarterMail.

              Thanks again!
              James

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              • #8
                Would transactional e-mails from 3dcart also go out through Google Apps??

                Also as a side note, Google Apps allows you to have Aliases for e-mail accounts. So you can have one or a few accounts and many aliases for them. You can't reply by an alias name, but you will receive these e-mails.

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                • #9
                  I think it is possible to set up transactional emails to go through your Gmail servers, but it doesn't do it by default. You'd need to use the Mandrill plugin and fudge the settings. I personally use Mandrill for my transactional email.

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                  • #10
                    We also currently use Mandrill for transactional mail. So probably we'll just leave it the same.

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                    • #11
                      I'm curious what you two (cbsteven and elightbox) are using Mandrill for? I hadn't heard of it before your posts. I see they send transactional emails, but how/why do you use it? Does it replace the order/shipping notifications that 3d sends out?
                      Chris
                      TC Life Safety
                      TC Wireless

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                      • #12
                        It's basically an alternate mail server to use to send those confirmation(etc.) emails. The nice thing for me is that I can log in and see exactly what was sent, when, and if it was opened or had links clicked.

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                        • #13
                          At first I added it to see if we get better delivery rates since the e-mails are sent by Mailchimp. The jury is still out on this, although I have not had support add the Mandrill Domain Key (DKIM) and SPF paramaters to our DNS. I would presume when that is done these would help with delivery rates.

                          Also as cbsteven mentioned, you can see if a particular e-mail was opened, which is nice, and you can also monitor the links you put in e-mails and see if people are clicking on them, or maybe a different link or wording would bring more clicks.
                          over the weekend we were not receiving order e-mails, so I went to Mandrill and saw that they are being sent by the cart to both us and the customers. That was a relief and helped narrow the search for the problem.

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