WordPress not sending emails is one of the most common issues faced by WordPress users. You may have noticed that you are not getting email notifications as expected, or your readers or customers have complained the same.
Also, you may have correctly installed a contact plugin like Contact Form 7, but then observed that emails are not getting sent from this source.
Email problems like this can be quite frustrating. But here is the good news – you can fix it in 30 minutes and have WordPress sending out emails.
In This Article:
What Causes the WordPress Not Sending Emails Issue?
One major reason why this happens is that webhosts disable the PHP Mail function because it is very easy to exploit by spammers and hackers.
When WordPress wants to send emails, it calls on the email server in your webhost using the PHP Mail function, but if this function is disabled by your webhost (which is often the case), your requests to send emails will not even get to your mail server.
Even if this function is not disabled by your webhost, it is generally known that email servers screen out emails sent using PHP Mail function. And so, your emails may get sent but will not be received by the recipient server; and even if they are received, would very often land in spam.
But how can you fix all these issues?
How To Solve WordPress not sending emails
Note: If you do not want to go through the stress of resolving this issue, our developers can do it for you in a few minutes. Simply request our service here.
The WordPress not sending emails issue can be solved by installing an SMTP Server Plugin.
When you have an SMTP server correctly installed, WordPress would no longer need to send emails using your webhost email server. Instead, the emails would go directly from WordPress to your SMTP server, thus removing the problem.
Additionally, since SMTP uses the PHP Mailer Library instead of the PHP Mail function, your emails are much more likely to be correctly delivered and to avoid the spam folder.
Install and Configure Gmail SMTP Plugin
To use Gmail SMTP, you would need a Gmail account. Using a free Gmail account, note that you would have a daily limit of 500 emails (which gives you 15,000 emails per month). This should be ok for most regular users.
If you require more emails, you can increase your email allowance to 2000 per day by signing up for a paid Google Apps for Work account.
Installing Gmail SMTP Plugin
To install the plugin, login to your WordPress dashboard and go to Plugins > Add New.
In the search box, enter “gmail smtp” and when this plugin appears, click Install Now.
When the installation completes, click Activate.
You would be taken to the “Plugins” page with a message on top indicating your plugin has been activated. On this page, search for the Gmail SMTP plugin and click Settings.
Authorizing The Plugin To Send Using Your Gmail Account
In order to fix WordPress not sending emails, you need to authorize your SMTP plugin to send emails using your Gmail account. For this to work, you have to create a google web application and generate API keys. This sounds technical, but it is actually quite easy and straightforward.
Go to the Google App creation page, and login with the google account you intend to use.
On the “Register your application” page, select “Yes” for both items and click Agree and Continue.
Next, click Go to credentials.
Your “Authorized Redirect URI” is provided in your Gmail SMTP plugin page. Go there and copy it. Make sure you copy the whole link.
Paste this redirect URI in your Gmail credential page, and click Create Client ID.
In the next step, leave the email address set to the one you want to use, and enter a product name. You can use any product name you choose, e.g. “Gmail SMTP Sender”. Next, click Continue.
In the final step, click Done.
You will be taken to the credentials page.
Sending a Message to check if WordPress not sending emails
Click on the name of the credential you just created.
In the next page, you will see your Client ID and Client Secret.
Copy the “Client ID” and “Client Secret” into their corresponding input boxes in the Gmail SMTP plugin settings page.
Next, enter the Gmail address you are using in the “OAuth Email Address” and “From Email Address” Input boxes.
Enter your “From Name”, which is the name that would show when a person receives your message.
In “Type of Encryption”, select TLS, and enter 587 in the “SMTP Port” input box.
If you do not use an SSL certificate on your server, tick the “Disable SSL Certificate Verification” box. We however strongly recommend you use SSL on all your sites and leave this option as is.
Click Save Changes.
After saving your settings, a “Grant Permission” button would appear. Click on it.
Note: If you receive a message warning you that the app has not been verified, click Advanced and click the Go to (url) link.
In the authorization page, click Allow.
You would be taken back to your plugin setting page where you should see an “Access Granted Successfully” message at the top. Also, SMTP Status should now be “Connected”.
And that’s it! You have configured WordPress to send emails using Gmail SMTP.
Testing Your Gmail SMTP Plugin
At this point, you want to send a test email to see if it works.
To do this, switch to the “Test Email” tab in your plugin. Next, fill out the “To”, “Subject”, and “Message” fields and click Send Email.
You should receive the test email in your inbox, in which case your WordPress not sending emails issue is resolved!
How to fix SMTP Plugin not connecting to Gmail Server
If you correctly followed the steps to connect SMTP plugin to Gmail, and yet your test email failed, the most common reason is that the connection port (587) is disabled by your web host. Read here to learn how to fix this.
WordPress not sending emails – Conclusion
At this point, you should have successfully resolved the WordPress not sending emails issue in your site. If you are still having challenges, we can help you resolve it.
Also, if you have questions or suggestions, please drop them in the comments section below.