Setting Up Gmail For Multiple Accounts

by JR Griggs

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gmail I just recently switched from Outlook to Gmail for all of my email accounts. I do like Outlook but I was getting errors that were just making the experience frustrating. I had thought about making the switch before because so many that I know had and loved it. But I was worried that Gmail would not be able to do all that Outlook has done. So far it is working out really nice and it looks like I will be sticking with it.

Setting it up was a lot easier than I thought until I ran into one pesky issue. After searching for hours on Google, I could not find an answer to it. Eventually I did find a work around for it and when I told people that I did, they asked for me to show them how I did it.

So this post will primarily cover how I set up my Gmail to run 9 email accounts for me. The pesky issue was the fact that when you send email with a different “reply-to” address Gmail ads “sent by on behalf of” That was not ideal for me and I spent quite a bit of time trying to get a work around for it.

Setting Up Multiple Accounts

OK, I have 9 different email accounts. One is for a company I do some work for and the others are all for different sites I have plus I have the one Gmail account. In order to be productive I need to access all these accounts in one place. So here is how I setup Gmail to do this for me.

Gmail gives you the ability to add 5 pop3 accounts and have them “fetch” your mail for you. This is great but as stated before I have 9 accounts. So the pop3 option alone, was not going to cut it.

The other option is to forward your emails to Gmail and create a “send mail as” address, so that it sends email with that “reply-to” address.

So what I did was set up the one email that I have with the company I work with as pop3. This was easiest since I do not have access to the email host. I then simply created a filter that tells Gmail to take all mail sent to that address and apply a label to it and to skip the inbox. This makes it act pretty much like the rules and folder system in Outlook.

That was easy! It gets the mail and it moves it to a section that I see easily when there is new mail. And I set Gmail up to always set the “reply-to” address as the address the email was sent to. Mission accomplished. (see images below for examples)




So to recap: I told Gmail to reply from the same address that messages were sent to. I then setup a filter to label those emails.

Now for the rest of my email it got trickier.

I decided that the best way to do the rest of the emails was to just have them forwarded and to use the “send mail from another address” in Gmail, so that when I send a message it will show the proper email address to reply to.

Setting Up Forwarding

The way to do this is to log into your email host and tell it to forward the emails to Gmail. Then you go into the settings in Gmail and add a new “send from” address. This will allow you to send email from that email via a dropdown menu when you are sending mail.

Here is where the problem comes in. When you tell Gmail to use its server, it will add the “sent on behalf of” message. This is not a good thing, in my opinion.

Eventually Gmail added the feature that you could use your own mail server and that message will not be displayed, but that has it’s own problems.

See, when you setup a mail forwarder with your host, the best way to do it is to delete the mail account and just have the forwarder. Otherwise all mail sent to the email address will be forwarded but also stored on the server. Then you have to login and empty in periodically. What a pain right?

Well, using the option to send from your server in Gmail requires that you keep the email address hosted on your server rather than just setting up a forwarder. Again, this requires you to have to login periodically and delete your emails.

Send Only Email Account

So after a while of trying to work this out I had an idea. What if I created an email account that would never receive mail and use it as the email address for Gmail to send through?

You see, all Gmail cares about is that you have a server to send the mail through. So, all of my emails and sites are through one hosting account. So I created a dummy email account you could call it and told Gmail to use that account for sending mail. I did this for all 9 accounts using just one email for sending.

For example. Let’s say you have 3 emails for 3 different sites:

You can set up forwarders for all of those email addresses, then make an actual account called something like . This will be the email address you tell Gmail to send through.

This will not show up when you send your emails. You can now send emails through all 3 email accounts with out the “on behalf of” message. The from address will be the same as the email you are sending from not the one you told Gmail to send through.

The only way anyone would know that the email was routed through different email is if they looked at all of the header details. And even then who cares it is still through your domain.

I set up all of my emails to send through the one email account and it works great. Here is an example:


That’s it! Now you can email away and no one knows what account you are sending through or that you are using Gmail. All they know is that is sending them a message and they can reply at!

Of course I also setup filters for all the emails so that it labels them based on the account that the emails were sent to.

Hopefully I did not lose anyone and made some sense here. If not and you still need help leave a comment and I will try to help you the best I can.

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