Using Google Apps to host your email and manage your organisation is great and works very well, except that $5 per user per month starts becoming a bit pricey when your company grows. You are however able to host your emails elsewhere and signup for a free Google Account without gmail. This way you get pretty much all the benefits of hosting your email with Google except for a couple of features exclusive to Google Apps. You will be able to sign in to Google Drive, Google Calendar etc with firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow the steps below to do this yourself, or host with us and we’ll do it for you. Simply email email@example.com
Step 1 – Transfer Google Drive ownership
Login to Google Drive for the user you are about to delete, right click on each of the folders you want to transfer, click on share, click on “Advanced”, insert your personal Gmail email account, and select “Is owner” on the dropdown. This will transfer the Drive files and folders of your Google Apps account to your personal account.
Step 2 – Delete the user from Google Apps console
Delete the user from Google Apps and choose to delete the files and folders belonging to the current user. Wait for the files to be deleted before proceeding to the next step.
Steps 1 and 2 should be repeated for each of the users in your organisation who are on Google Apps
Step 3 – Create email accounts through cPanel
Create an email account through cPanel for each user.
Step 4 – Update MX records through cPanel
Login to your cPanel and delete MX records pointing to Google Apps. Check current MX records for your domain here. If these are still showing as “aspmx.l.google.com” etc, then check back until these are the default MX records for your webhost or domain.
Step 5 – Delete your Google Apps account
Step 6 – Register Google Accounts without Gmail
Register a Google account without Gmail for each email address @yourdomain.co.za – https://accounts.google.com/SignUpWithoutGmail.
Step 7 – Confirm email address and transfer Drive files
Log in to your email account through webmail and confirm your email address. You should now be able to go to drive.google.com and login with firstname.lastname@example.org. Now login to your personal Gmail account and go to Google Drive. Right click on each of the folders and make email@example.com the owner as described in step 1.
Step 8 – Enjoy ?
You will now have a Google Account with 15GB of Google Drive space using firstname.lastname@example.org