If you use Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL or any other free email provider, you’ve probably considered switching to Gmail for its superior spam filter or its integration with other Google services, like Google Docs.
Even if you have your own domain or company email address, you should consider using an extra Gmail account. Free email providers, like Gmail, are indispensable when you sign up on different sites and make your email address public. They protect your private email address from needless spam.
Furthermore, if one account were to succumb to the endless onslaught of spam, you can always create a new email account or switch to another email provider.
To help you make the transition as smooth as possible, Gmail offers a quick and easy way to import all previous mail and contacts from any email provider. Of course, you can also transfer and redirect emails from other Gmail accounts.
Gmail’s import option is compatible with any email provider using POP3. This means that any emails and contacts from Yahoo, Hotmail or AOL can be safely transferred to your new Gmail account.
Here’s how to import emails and contacts from any email provider to Gmail.
First, login to your Gmail account.
Then, click on the Settings button located on the top right corner of the window, next to the Sign out button.
In the Settings window, click on the Accounts and Import tab.
Under the Import mail and contacts section, click on the Import mail and contacts button.
Type in your old email address (ex: firstname.lastname@example.org) and click the Continue button.
Now, input the password you chose for your old email address and click on Continue.
In the next step, Gmail allows you to choose what to import to your new email address.
All the option boxes are checked by default. However, if you only want to import your contacts, uncheck the Import mail box.
If you don’t want to redirect new emails from your old address to Gmail, uncheck the Import new mail for next 30 days box. Moreover, if you’re switching to Gmail because your email address is blocked with spam, it might be a good idea not to redirect any new emails since you’ll also redirect the spam.
In addition, you may want to label redirected emails with your old email address or give them a more suggestive name.
After configuring your import options, click on Start import.
Finally, click the OK button to finish the import process.
The import process will take place in the background, so you can use your Gmail account normally, and it will continue, even if you log out of Gmail and close your browser.
If you don’t see any imported email or contacts right away, be patient, as the process may take up to 2 days to complete.
You can always check the status of your import by clicking on Settings and then on the Accounts and Import tab.
If, for some reason, you want to stop the import process, follow the above instructions to reach Import mail and contacts, click the stop button on the right and confirm by clicking OK.