Why Doesn’t Craft Send Emails?

Craft needs to send some important system emails now and then. These include, but are not limited to:

  • A password reset email
  • An activation email to a newly added user
  • A notification that a visitor has submitted a contact form

Sometimes, these emails don’t arrive; not even in your spam folder. In this case, your developer (if you are not the developer yourself) must configure email settings correctly to resolve the issue.

Craft is self-hosted, running on your own servers. You’ll need to reach out directly to your web agency, developer, or hosting provider to resolve email issues. If you don’t have a developer handy, let us know!

Setting Up Email #

Navigate in the control panel to SettingsEmail.

Cp Settings

It’s common to restrict access to this danger zone area of the control panel. If you don’t see the Settings menu item, reach out to someone who can.

Take a look at the options under the Transport Type dropdown.

Email Transport

Option: Sendmail #

Sendmail is the default option. It tells Craft to use the server’s built-in Sendmail service. While this works in many cases, there’s no guarantee your server is set up correctly to use Sendmail or that emails will not end up in spam folders. This is the most common problem.

Sendmail is fine for local development and for casual, personal websites. For mission-critical websites in production environments, use a reliable SMTP service.

Option: Gmail #

Gmail might be a good option depending on your appetite for risk. Enter your Gmail username and password, then click Test. If it fails, check the email account you used for a notice from Google. If you get an email titled, "Review blocked sign-in attempt," it will include a link, "allowing less secure apps." Click that link to enable that option in your Gmail account. It should work now.

Gmail will set the email’s From field to the address of that Gmail account. If it’s your own account, all of Craft’s system emails (password resets, new users, etc.) will appear to be directly from you.

Option: SMTP #

We recommend this as the most reliable option. Craft will connect to an SMTP Email service to send system emails. A few popular services are (in no particular order):

Many services offer a free tier if you’re not sending many emails, and this is often the case with Craft.

If you’re unfamiliar with the option terms like Port, SSL, TLS, and such, then you’ll need a developer to assist with this setup.

There is a Postmark plugin in the Craft 3 plugin store. It adds a "Postmark" option to the Transport Type field and only requires a token. Easy setup!

Sending password reset and activation links manually #

If you’re in a bind, you can send password reset and account activation links yourself if you have permissions to manage users. Click into a user’s account, then click the gear button at the top, right-hand side of the screen.

Copy an account activation link

Activation Link

Copy a password reset link

Password Reset Link

Copy one of those links and paste it into an email. This will get you going while your developer sorts out the issue!

Applies to Craft CMS 3.