In an effort to simplify life and centralize my scattered points of communication, I’m consolidating my email addresses. I currently have:
- My original gmail account, which includes my gaming handle for some strange reason and I’ve hated using it for years.
- My email account for this blog, which uses Google Apps For Your Domain Business.
- My full name at gmail – my acquisition of this account warrants its own post. I don’t use it too often because my last name isn’t immediately intuitive and it makes the address a bit long.
- My primary email account from my old domain, which I primarily used for a side job I used to do, but I have a couple of random website accounts tied to it like Drop Box.
Transferring my contacts was a cakewalk, but not as easy as it should be. When you create a new account, Google has 3 emails waiting in your inbox – an introduction to mobile phone access, a summary of customization options like colors and themes, and a third email sympathizing with the pains of transferring contacts and a handy “Import contacts and mail” link. Strangely enough, they wouldn’t allow me to import contacts from another gmail account. WTF, Google? I had to export/import a Google CSV file, but no obvious data was lost. It also allowed me an opportunity to address the contacts that I don’t really communicate with often enough to label a “contact” and omit them. Nonetheless, it should’ve been a one-click operation.
Google Reader was a similar painless affair – I just exported the OPML file from my old account and imported into my new account.
Buzz and Google Chat were a different story, though. Because Buzz just launched, I’m only following 9 people – the 9 it automatically recognized. For this and for chat, I had to manually add each contact by typing in their name or email address. Luckily, Buzz tied into Google Reader, so I was automatically following my old Google Reader chaps.
Next up – forwarding. In each of my old accounts, I configured it to forward all email to my new account. In my new main account, I created a filter and I have each account dropping into its own folder label. This will help me make sense of it all at first, but I plan to eliminate this distinction later.
I expect there to be some cases in which I don’t want my reply-to address to be my new main email address, but keep it as the old address. Because of this, I added all accounts under “Send mail as” in my Google settings. This will allow me to still send mail from my @sethgholson.com address if I specifically wanted to:
Google sends a verification email to that address with a code/link to confirm you own the address. Because I had already configured forwarding, it all came to my new inbox and I didn’t have to hunt down the number in each account.
I’m sure I neglected something, but that should be the core of the transition.