Why use SMTP from WordPress instead of PHPMail()?

By default, WordPress will send emails using a protocol called ‘PHPMail()’, which has a number of disadvantages and in many cases leads to the email hitting the SPAM folder of the recipient. PHP mail is disabled on our servers.

When an email is sent from WordPress, such as a contact form the message is delivered via PHPMail, which will use an email address similar to…

[email protected]

In our case, this would be…

[email protected]

Yet, your WordPress configuration will be set to send emails from an alternative ‘prettier’ email address, such as ‘[email protected]’.

The problem here is that many recipient mailboxes will recognise this as ‘spoofing’, and will indeed flag the message as SPAM.


MailChannels and PHPMail()

Please note that with Brixly, all outbound mail is relayed via a premium delivery / SMTP service called ‘MailChannels’. This is provided free of charge with each account, and is designed to ensure the highest delivery rates possible in the hosting industry.

Important: When using PHPMail() instead of the recommended ‘SMTP’ for WordPress emails, your emails will not be relayed via MailChannels at all, and therefore also imposes risk of IP blacklists affecting email delivery to your clients.

It is always recommended to enable SMTP through WordPress.


Configure WordPress to send via SMTP

We have an excellent guide on how to configure SMTP with your WordPress application here...

The SMTP details for your mail accounts can be found by logging in to cPanel, then going to...

Email Accounts -> 'Connect Devices'

From here, you will be provided with the SMTP configuration details required to connect your email client to your mailbox.

The settings are as follows...

Secure SSL / TLS Settings:

Username: Your email address
Password: The password to access the email address
Outgoing Server: mail.yourdomain.com (replacing 'yourdomain' with your actual domain name)
TLS Port: 587

What if I am using an external email service?

If you are using another provider for emails, then you would need to obtain the SMTP server and credentials from your provider for use within the plugin.

However, we have seen some issues reported where an API key is required from your provider, or similar, unnecessary complications.

If that is the case, you do have the option of relaying messages from our servers via SMTP, without affecting inbound mail so that just messages sent out from your websites are still relayed correctly with authentication.

To do this, you can create an email account in your control panel with us, and follow the steps above. You will need to use your servers hostname as the SMTP 'server' in those cases, such as 'kilo.cloudns.io'.

Another pointer, if doing this is that you would need to edit your SPF records to allow MailChannels to relay those messages. A guide on setting the correct SPF record can be found here...

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