WordPress emails not being sent has become a common issue in any WordPress support forum. Well, if you are among those facing this issue, you are not alone, and guess what, there is always a fix to it. 

Most of the WordPress beginners, normally face this issue and ask support agents why their WordPress contact form plugin is not sending emails, or why they can not see any WordPress email notifications. In this article, we shall go through on how to find an easy fix for why your WordPress plugin can not send emails.

WordPress users normally experience this email issue in some of the highlighted circumstances below.

  1. First, is when using contact forms. It doesn’t necessarily matter which contact form plugin one is using whether the usual contact form 7 or a third party plugin. No email notification is sent to you to show that a contact form has been submitted.
  2. Secondly, on using third party plugins notifications from big plugins such as Woocommerce, WpForms are emitted since WordPress can not send emails.
  3. Thirdly, is when WordPress is the only configuration to send your notifications which includes emails that notify you on Wp operations such as blog comments, automatic updates and the rest.

In these three situations your emails are marked as spam, or never get to your inbox. 

Reason For WordPress emails not being sent

Just like all other email providers like Gmail, WordPress can also the SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) server that’s installed on the respective computer server of which WordPress has been installed on. SMTP is the standard method for sending emails which uses strong authentication and increases email deliverability. Here are the common reasons for this issue:

1. Your WordPress SMTP Server Isn’t Configured Properly

In common cases, WordPress do fail to send emails due to wrong configuration of the SMTP server. Appropriate configuration would include the use of strong authentication, configuration of the basic SMTP server settings, and using best methods when setting up SPF records. However if you do not want to go through all this, or if you have less knowledge about it, you can bypass it through installation of a WordPress plugin

 2. Having a shared server Environment

This is a less common case but may be a reason unto why your WordPress fails to send emails. If your WordPress site’s respective SMTP server is sharing your sender reputation with other senders then your emails may not be sent depending on how other senders use their SMTP servers. In this case, when sharing the same IP space and sender reputation, some situation highlighted below may cause your emails not to be sent.

  • If your hosting provider doesn’t check users to prevent inappropriate senders from abuse
  • If the sender on your shared IP space is receiving many complaint rates, and experiencing high bounce rates.
  • If the sender on your shared IP space is on a blacklist and spam list

How to Fix The Issue

  1. Use only your email account SMTP servers with a 3rd party plugin

This can be done by use of a 3rd party plugin for example the WP Mail SMTP plugin. Simply visit your dashboard and under plugins, click on “add new” then install and activate the WP Mail SMTP plugin from the WordPress directory.

Once activated, click the Settings option in order to set up the plugin. Fill in your email and name details  and make sure that “Send all WordPress emails via SMTP” is selected. 

For the SMTP settings the configuration can be done using your hosting provider like godaddy, hostgator, namecheap etc. They all have a section on the cPanel where you can find an option for email accounts.

On clicking the “email account” option choose “Set Up Email Client” link to view your SMTP settings which you will fill on the plugins page.

      2.  Use Google SMTP email servers

This second method uses a free Gmail account from Google. So long as you have a Gmail account set up and ready just head on to the WordPress plugin respiratory, install and activate the Gmail SMTP plugin. It is known for those who need to use their Gmail accounts to send messages. The server uses OAuth 2.0 which is an authentication that makes it very secure. 

When it comes to configuration, on settings page of your WordPress dashboard select Gmail SMTP to configure it. For authorization of the google email server to your WordPress, you need an app and generate API keys for Gmail. 

Visit the Google Developers Console website and create a new project as shown.

In the left side, choose Dashboard, then Enable APIs and Services option. Select the Gmail API link, which is listed on G Suite APIs.

Next, create access credentials for use with the Gmail API. Select Credentials from the left side, then choose Create credentials and select OAuth client ID. To get this ID, setup your product name and then on the other hand of the wp plugin copy the details of the Authorized Redirect URI portion into the respective field of the Gmail API client ID page.

Similarly, Copy and paste the Client ID and Client Secret into the plugin’s Settings page.

After setting up all these and the other To and From Email addresses, Encryption type and SMTP port click on save and grant permission. ensure you fill you Gmail account details to authorize the connection and the check that your SMTP Status reads Connected.


In conclusion web hosting restrictions and spam filters in mail functionality is nowadays becoming difficult. This is all done for security purposes in order to maintain clean mail processes and functionality. In case this is affecting your mail deliverability, you need to consider using various options for sending messages. For instance do not use php mail function to handle large portions of this issue but instead use SMTP.

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