Occasional email issues are par for the course when you’re a website admin, and fast, efficient troubleshooting is a must. Here at Ninja Forms we feel that troubleshooting shouldn’t cost you anything, either. That’s why we’ve always recommended a free email service for debugging purposes. Unfortunately, the service that we have traditionally recommended has dropped their free tier.
So, we’ve cast around for an alternative debugging solution that won’t cost you a dime while still being reliable and trustworthy. The solution we have settled on as the best for our users is Mailgun, a development focused service also used by services like slack, stripe, GitHub and zapier. Follow the steps below to set it up for yourself!
- Install the “Mailgun for WordPress” plugin from the WordPress Plugin Repository.
- Create a free account on Mailgun.com
- After your account is created a Sandbox Server will be created for you. Note the sandbox server url in the success message you receive here. That will be relevant again in a minute.
- You should have by now received an email from Mailgun regarding account activation. Go to your email Inbox now and activate your account.
- Now head to the Mailgun control panel. At the bottom you will see Your Sandbox Domain. Here you will find the Mailgun Domain Name and the gear icon will take you to your API Key.
- Add the Mailgun Domain Name and API Key to your “Mailgun for WordPress” plugin settings in your WordPress dashboard.
- You should now test configuration. If this fails, be sure to verify your account and re-confirm your Mailgun Domain Name and API Key settings. With your account activated and your settings correct, re-test your configuration.
- After a Successful Configuration Test, you will receive a confirmation email.
Congratulations! You’ve successfully installed Mailgun. While Mailgun’s free service is perfectly suited for debugging purposes, you may find that you need a regular email service provider and the 10k a month limit of the free account is too confining. Consider that they also offer paid tiers of service that expand on that limit, including adding dedicated IPs. If you’re interested in how email is sent and received, and why a dedicated email service provider like Mailgun can be a big upgrade over how you currently send email (even if you will never reach 10k emails/ month), then check out our blog post on the subject over at ninjaforms.com. Good luck and happy emailing!