Email has seriously sped up communications in work settings and in our personal lives. It’s really convenient — unless you have multiple email addresses.
Between needing different addresses for work and your personal life, you can have a lot of messages to check, ranging in degrees from crucial to spam. It can be hard to stay on top of it all.
Or maybe you’re ready to make the jump from a free email service to one that’s built with your privacy in mind.
Fortunately, there’s a simple way to check all of your emails in one place, brought to you by our sponsor, StartMail. Keep reading to see why this is Kim’s pick for secure email if you’re ready to say goodbye to Big Tech.
Pick your preferred platform
The first step to checking your emails all in one place is deciding which platform you want to use as the central hub. This can be an application or a web-browser platform.
Examples of email applications are Mail, Microsoft Outlook or Thunderbird. If you primarily check your email on computers, whether from work, home PC or laptop, you might prefer to use an email application to manage all of your accounts.
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Many computer email programs also have mobile app versions, so you can use one of these platforms to check all of your messages on the go.
Whichever you choose is up to you. We’ll use StartMail. Fun fact: With StartMail, you can encrypt emails in a single click, even if your recipient doesn’t use an encrypted service.
How to merge or view multiple email accounts
To combine email accounts and use one platform to check all of your messages, you just need to set up mail forwarding.
The steps to set up one email account to forward to another are pretty universal. Sure, the exact wording and menu layout may be a little different on each platform, but the premise remains the same.
To forward email from one account to another:
- Log in to the account you want to have forward to your new primary email platform.
- Click on “Settings,” which often includes or is denoted by a gear icon.
- Within Settings, find the section or tab with the term “Forward” or “Message Forwarding” in it.
- Under Forwarding, you will find a text box labeled “Forward emails to” or something similar. Input the email address you chose to be your primary.
- Click the “Save” button.
- Email services like Yahoo and Gmail send verification emails to make sure you meant to start forwarding (this is a way to keep hackers at bay — tap or click here to learn more about common email hacks). To verify your email forwarding:
- Log in to your primary email platform, and open the verification email found there.
- Click the link provided in the email.
- Follow the instructions provided to complete the process.
- Your email will now be forwarded to the address on your primary platform.
Having multiple accounts on one platform allows you to access older emails, and reply to messages from different addresses.
Here’s more specific help with importing your messages to the top platforms:
To import other accounts into StartMail:
Step 1: Use IMAP and an email client
- Access your StartMail account through an email client. To do this, click Settings.
- Then, click on Trusted devices/IMAP.
- You’ll see a bar that says To access StartMail from other clients using IMAP. Toggle the bar to enable access.
- Then, click on Add device.
- You’ll see a section titled Choose device name. Enter the name and confirm with your account password. Then, click Confirm.
Now, you’ll see the device information you need to set up the connection. Tap on close, and you’ve configured your device. Now that you’ve established a solid foundation, it’s time to make the big moves.
Step 2: Set up your old email address in the client
Basically, you need to have both your new email address and your old one in the same client.
Here’s how to add a Gmail account to the client
- On a computer, sign in to your Gmail account.
- Click the gear icon on the top right of the screen, then click Settings.
- Next, click the Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab.
- Now, tap on Add a forwarding address button and enter the email you’d like to forward to.
- Enter the email address and click Next, then follow the onscreen prompts and you’re done.
What if you use Yahoo?
Set up your email account in the client with these steps. Keep in mind, Yahoo only allows forwarding for paid users. You’ll need to upgrade to a Pro account for $34.99 a year or $3.49 a month to access this feature.
- On a computer, navigate to Yahoo Mail and sign in to the account you’d like to forward from.
- Go to Settings.
- Click Mailboxes on the left side of the screen.
- In your Mailbox List, click on the email account you’re currently accessing.
- Under the Forwarding section, enter the email address you’d like to forward to.
- Click Verify.
- Follow the onscreen prompts.
If you use Microsoft Outlook, here’s what to do
Depending on which version of Outlook you use, the options you have to back up data and import and export can vary. The simplest method of moving email from Outlook to another provider is by way of forwarding.
- On a computer, navigate to Outlook and sign in to the account you’d like to forward from.
- Click the gear on the top right of the screen, then click View all Outlook settings.
- In the Mail tab, click Forwarding.
- Select the Enable Forwarding checkbox.
- Enter the email address you’d like to forward mail to and decide if you want to keep copies of the forwarded messages in your Outlook account.
- Click Save.
Since both email addresses are now set up in your mail client, you’re all set up for success. You’ll get al your email right to your StartMail inbox.
To import other accounts into Gmail:
If you’re sticking with a Google email account, follow the steps below.
- Make sure the email account you’re sending to Gmail has POP access enabled. That will be under Settings in different email platforms. To change POP access in a secondary Gmail account:
- Sign in to your Gmail and click on Settings (the gear icon in the top right).
- Click on the “Forwarding and POP/IMAP” tab, and select “Enable POP for all mail” in the “POP Download” section.
- To make sure you don’t lose emails, select “Keep Gmail’s copy in the inbox” next to “When messages are accessed with POP.”
- Click “Save Changes” at the bottom.
- In Gmail Settings, click on the “Accounts” tab.
- Click on “Add a mail account” in the “Check mail from other accounts” section.
- Type in the email address you want to forward to Gmail, and click “Next”.
- Type in the password for that email address and click “Next”.
- Check the “Always use a secure connection (SSL) when retrieving mail” and “Label incoming messages” boxes.
- Click “Add Account.”
- To reply from the address an email was sent to, in the “Accounts” tab, select “Reply from the same address the message was sent to” in the “Send mail as” section.
- This is important to set up to keep contacts from getting confused, to keep accounts like your work email active and to keep your central email private.
To import other accounts into Mail, Outlook, and Thunderbird:
- While logged into the application, click on the “File” (or in Mail, “Mail”) tab, then click “Add Account.”
- If prompted, select the type of account you will be using–Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Other, etc.
- Enter the account information for the account you wish to add: the email address, the password, and if prompted, the name used on the email.
- Click “Next,” “Continue,” “Connect” or “OK.” Follow prompts to finish the configuration.
- The account will now be added to the email application. It will be visible as an inbox below the one you first set up, or the one you put in when you started the application for the first time.
- Clicking “Reply” to an email in this second inbox should have the reply come from this second email address. Outlook can let you change the “From” line to different inboxes, though.
Having a central location for all of your email is incredibly useful, and easy to set up. You just need to decide if you want to merge emails all to one address, or if you want to have an application that lets you have distinct accounts in one place.
The setup you go with will depend on your preferences.
Kim’s pick? StartMail
StartMail, a sponsor of Kim’s national radio show, is an ad-free email service that doesn’t collect or share any data with third parties. Your online activity isn’t tracked and there’s no one building a personal profile of you based on your habits. When you delete mail, it’s gone for good, and you encrypt emails in just a click.
Your inbox and folders are encrypted and stored in their own “vault.” You’re the only one with access, so nobody (including StartMail) is snooping around reading your private correspondence. You can create “burner accounts” to share disposable email addresses while keeping your legit address private, too.
And to make it even better, Kim has set up a special deal for listeners and readers. Tap or click for a 7-day free trial and to get 50% off your first year at StartMail.com/Kim. What are you waiting for?