Updates to email and SMTP in Commusoft

Paul Hewson
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Emails are crucial for field service businesses - you use them to send out invoices, estimates, certificates, reminders, and more. They have most likely become one of your main methods of communicating with your customers, so we understand just how important they are. That is why we are making two small updates to emails within Commusoft.

  • The first change aims to decrease the number of emails that fail to send when using your email provider via SMTP.
  • The second update adds status tags for emails sent via Commusoft's provider (if SMTP has failed).

Keep reading to learn a little more about emails in Commusoft and these two improvements rolling out on the 10th of September.

Sending emails in Commusoft

Commusoft offer two ways of sending emails.

Your own email provider via SMTP

The best option for sending business emails, as they are sent from your own email address. SMTP allows Commusoft to send the email for you via your email provider - don't worry, this does not mean we can access your email account. Emails that arrive from your own email i.e. paul@yourcompany.com look more professional and are more trusted by customers and mailboxes. This means less chance of your email arriving into somebody's spam or being deleted. Emails sent via SMTP also benefit from being accessible within your provider's sent box (e.g. on gmail.com). Learn how to set up SMTP in Commusoft.

Via Commusoft's email provider

If you have issues setting up SMTP, any emails you send through Commusoft will be sent by our mail provider instead. Whilst this method gets the job done, there is a greater risk that your emails will be marked as spam by the customer's mailbox. Additionally, email's sent via our provider will not appear within your sent box, which you may prefer them to.

Less failed emails via SMTP

When sending emails via SMTP, occasionally they will fail to deliver for a variety of possible reasons. This could be due to either an issue with the customer's mailbox or with your own provider (not all email services are created equal).

Previously, when an email failed to send from Commusoft via SMTP, the system would not try to send it again. We have changed this, so we will now try to send the email multiple times over a 24-hour period.

I know some of you will ask, "But if it failed once, won't it just fail again?". Not necessarily. Sometimes the reason behind the failure may only be temporary, such as an error or server maintenance. Therefore, by trying multiple times we increase the chance of the email delivering successfully.

If after 24 hours, the email has still not been received by the customer's mailbox, Commusoft will send it on your behalf via our mail provider. This works as a backup, so should ensure that your customer correctly receives the message you were trying to send.

Status tags for non SMTP emails in Commusoft

In those instances where your email is sent using Commusoft's mail provider (e.g. haven't set up SMTP or because email has failed), you will now be able to see the email's current status  against the record in the notes and communications tab. Please note, these tags will not show for emails sent through your own mail provider via SMTP.

Delivered email status

This update adds six colour coded statuses:

Sent - Your email has successfully been sent by our mail provider.

Delivered - Your email has been received by the customer.

Opened - Your email has been opened.*

Clicked - Content within your email has been clicked.*

Spam report - Your email has been marked as spam.

Bounced - Your email has been rejected or failed to deliver to the recipient's mailbox.

Email tags

*Opened and Clicked statuses are not 100% accurate. Our email provider uses a method to try and tell if an email has been opened or clicked, however, this can be blocked by certain mail providers so its accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

When an email has multiple recipients, only the first email/ recipient in the list will be tracked, as it would be impractical to have status tags for each recipient. Please bear this in mind when sending to multiple customers at once.

This is only a small update, but adds an extra level of detailed information when Commusoft needs to send an email without using your SMTP. Expect to see this change live next week - 3rd of August.

Why are status tags unavailable for SMTP emails?

Status tags are only available for emails sent via Commusoft's email provider. This is because it would not be practical for us to replicate this function across all the different possible email providers.

Not all mail providers are created equal

That's it for the updates, however, I want to take a moment to discuss why emails can fail to deliver when being sent with SMTP. Although we have added a function that will hopefully reduce the number of failed emails, choosing a good mail provider is key to reliable communications. Not all email providers are equal - some are more prone to issues and errors, less trusted by other mail services, and ultimately not as good as other options.

If your emails regularly fail to deliver, you may wish to consider changing your mail provider. We suggest you read up online to see what the best option for your business is, however, Gmail and Office 365/ Outlook tend to regularly lead the lists of best email providers for business.

Speaking of email, did you see our recent Outlook integration? It allows you to access customer and job information directly within your Outlook inbox. Check it out.

See Outlook integration

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