FAQ Q188: How can I change the emails so that they look like they come from my domain?

There are two ways in which planyo can send emails to your customers: using your email address in the FROM field or in the REPLY-TO field (here FROM will be set to a @planyo.com address). Your sender email is specified in Site settings / Company info / Notification sender email. In both cases the FROM field will also include your company name (unless you remove that from the sender email). Therefore, in both cases, most email clients will display a familiar name to your customers and when your customers reply to the notifications, you will receive these replies. The default emails will always use the @planyo address in the FROM field. The customized notifications give you a choice: in each notification you can decide whether to use your adress as REPLY-TO or FROM.

There are three ways in which planyo can send out emails: using the planyo servers, using your own SMTP server, or using the email delivery service from Amazon called SES (Simple Email Service). When the FROM field is set to @planyo.com and your email address is in the REPLY-TO field, we will always use Amazon SES for the delivery to maximize chances of successful delivery. When the FROM field is set to your address, you can decide whether you're ok with the emails sent from our servers (this is the default), or you prefer to use own SMTP server (if using an email-sending service such as Mandrill or Sendgrid), or you prefer to also use Amazon SES for the delivery (in this case you'll need to use the Amazon SES extension). The second or third choice is recommended to maximize the chances of your emails being delivered to the recipients and not being marked as spam. Please note that the first choice (sending from our servers) is usually also safe, although a few of our customers have reported problems with delivery to certain addresses (these are generally marginal). These potential problems are completely independent of us, it's a general problem of email delivery on the Internet where big services such as Amazon SES or Gmail are trusted more than servers hosting single applications such as Planyo. It's also possible that your own DNS records indicate that emails sent from 3rd party services should be marked by spam. Please see the description concerning SPF below.

If you use the Amazon SES extension, you can decide to use the subscription version which is very easy to set up, and where you use our account with Amazon or the download version which requires that you create your own Amazon SES account and use that to deliver your emails. Please see the table below for all the possibilities of email delivery:

If using a 3rd-party sending service (such as Mandrill, Sendgrid, Google Apps) you can click on Set up custom SMTP server in Settings / Notifications in order to configure a custom SMTP server.

FROM fieldREPLY-TO fieldDelivery methodAdvantagesDisadvantages
@planyo.com@your-address.comAmazon SESMinimal chance of emails being marked as spam. No additional costs. Both DKIM and SPF technologies used.When your customers examine the FROM address (e.g. by hovering over the sender name) they see the name planyo which may not be familiar to them.
@your-address.comPlanyo serversNo additional costs. Customers never see the name planyo.com which they may not be familiar with.There is a chance that some mail servers will mark these as spam and will not deliver some of your emails. Most of our customers using this delivery method do not experience problems. The possibility of emails marked as spam is increased if you have incorrect SPF settings (see below).
@your-address.comAmazon SES subscription versionMinimal chance of emails being marked as spam. Customers never see the name planyo.com which they may not be familiar with. You can use your own DKIM signature to give your customers guarantee that the emails are actually sent from you and further maximize the chance of delivery. See below for the description of DKIM.Monthly payment needed
@your-address.comAmazon SES download versionNo additional payments to planyo for this service except the initial purchase. Minimal chance of emails being marked as spam. Customers never see the name planyo.com which they may not be familiar with. You can use your own DKIM signature to give your customers guarantee that the emails are actually sent from you and further maximize the chance of delivery. See below for the description of DKIM.Complex set-up
@your-address.comYour custom SMTP server (e.g. Mandrill, Sendgrid)Minimal chance of emails being marked as spam if the custom SMTP servers are set up correctly (if using services such as Mandrill, you also have a possibility of using DKIM/SPF). Customers never see the name planyo.com which they may not be familiar with.You must make sure the SMTP configuration is correct, otherwise there's a risk of emails not being sent correctly.


DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM)
DKIM is a technology that allows a sender to attach to each message a digital signature. This way, no one else will be able to pretend that an email was sent from your address. DKIM is an important factor for many mail servers in determining whether an email is spam or not. Any receiving mail server can easily determine whether the domain that claimed to have signed the message actually did it. This way, DKIM makes it difficult or even impossible to steal the identities of legitimate organizations. The underlying technology uses public key cryptography. In case of DKIM, these are two keys generated explicitly for your domain, called the public key and the private key. The private key is used to sign the message. The public key needs to be published in DNS records for your domain, it is available to everyone and is used to verify the email signature.

If you decide to use your own FROM address and to use the Amazon SES extension, you have a possibility of uploading the private and public DKIM signatures which will be used in all emails sent to your customers. This is a recommended setup if using your own FROM address is important to you. In case you use @planyo.com in the FROM field, we always include our DKIM signature to all emails.

Sender Policy Framework (SPF)
Sender Policy Framework (SPF) is a type of Domain Name Service (DNS) record that identifies which mail servers are permitted to send email on behalf of your domain. If used by your domain, and if you use your own FROM address, you must make sure planyo is allowed to send emails on behalf of your addresses. Otherwise the chances of the planyo notifications being marked as spam are very high. Please note that emails with @planyo.com in the FROM field are safe and comply to the specified SPF rules for the planyo.com domain.

After you add the SPF record, receiving mail servers can refer to it and check if the given server was allowed to send message with your domain name in the FROM field. Depending on whether you use the Amazon SES extension or our our servers for your email delivery, you should add amazonses.com and/or planyo.com to the SPF record for your DNS.

Checking for delivery-related problems
Please see Q284 for detailed explanations of how to detect problems related to email delivery, including setting up a delivery log.
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