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Using Third-Party Email Services

Estimated reading time: 2 min

While Congregate offers email accounts and forwarders as a courtesy to our clients, our shared email servers do not allow direct access for clients to manage email due to security reasons. All email requests and modifications must be performed by our team.

If clients wish to make regular on-going changes to their email accounts (e.g., several changes per month) or are experiencing email delivery issues with various ISP’s, spam filters/blocks, etc. with no resolution, they may need to manage those accounts themselves with a third-party email provider so changes can be made directly and technical and delivery support can be offered.

Choosing an Email Provider

Clients are free to utilize any email provider they wish (such as GoDaddy, BlueHost, Gmail for Business, etc). This also includes any email services provided by their domain name provider. Using a third-party email provider will allow clients direct access to manage, create, remove, and control email at their domain names without our involvement. The third-party email provider can also offer technical support with any delivery-related issues.

Managing Your Own DNS Records

Congregate offers DNS management for client domain names which have no other outside integrations, subdomains, etc. Using a third-party email provider requires custom MX records and therefore Congregate is unable to manage such DNS records.

To determine if Congregate is currently managing your DNS, lookup your domain name to see if *.congregateclients.com appears as a name server. If it does not, your DNS is already managed outside of Congregate and you can proceed to the next step.

If Congregate is managing your DNS, you will need to transfer that management to your domain name provider or a third-party so you can make manual changes to your DNS records. Name servers will be provided to you by the domain name/DNS provider and they can assist in changing your domain name’s name servers. Please contact them for support.

Configuring Your DNS Records

Free Technical Support
Your domain name provider and/or email provider will offer free support on the configuration and setup of your domain name in order to utilize their services. While the following steps must be completed, your domain name and/or email provider can perform these steps for you or guide you through the process. Please contact them for support.
    1. Potentially change the MX records in your DNS configuration to the ones provided by your email provider. If your email and domain name provider are the same (e.g., GoDaddy) this step may not be required as the MX records are usually defaulted for use with the same provider. However, if you use one company for your DNS management and another for your email services, changing the MX records will be required. Your email service provider will provide you with the MX records that need to be used.
    2. Point your A/www record to Congregate’s servers. This will point your public website traffic to your Congregate site. The A/www record is a single IP address that will replace the current IP address in record. See below to determine which IP address you need to use:
      • For clients who registered for service on or after April 1, 2020:
        • 209.59.180.19
      • For clients who registered for service between January 1, 2015 and March 31, 2020:
        • 67.43.11.244
      • For clients who registered for service on or before December 31, 2014:
        • 67.43.11.245

Once your MX records are pointed to your email provider and your A/www record is pointed to Congregate, your configuration is complete!

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