Almost every week, there are new apps introduced into the market that are designed to facilitate communication and provide functional features that make the lives of professionals easier. But if you think email is dead, think again. According to this 2019 research, professionals spend approximately 5 hours of their day reading or checking emails. Needless to say, email is an integral part of the professional and business world. 

With so much time spent on emails, it is important to improve efficiency in this aspect of your daily life. It’s crucial to increase productivity with the best email client. 

To help you choose the best email client according to your business needs, we have compiled a list of the best options. We will look at each email client and why you need to use them. 

What Makes a Great Email Client?

It is important to know how to choose the right email client first. The features to look for will depend on your needs and what you use email for. 

For some, the most important feature is the ability to work with a variety of email services. It is also important to consider elements directly linked to ease of user experience. If you spend a great deal of your day reading and sorting through emails, you want the tool to save time. 

The email client you choose must be easy to set up, its design must be intuitive and user-friendly, and it should have customization options you can tweak according to how you want to use it. Most email clients on this list have some degree of customization available to them, so it is up to you what type of experience you are looking for. 

Microsoft Outlook

Outlook is the classic email client for Microsoft users. It is also the most popular email client with professionals and businesses. This email client is owned by Microsoft so it integrates nicely into Microsoft 365 and Windows 10. It is also one of the oldest email clients in this list since it was launched in 1996. Back then, it was known as Hotmail but was rebranded as Outlook in 2012. 

Microsoft Outlook isn’t free though. For a one-time payment of $139.99 or a monthly fee of $6.99, it can be integrated into third-party applications such as Gmail, Exchange, iCloud, or Yahoo Mail. It can also be used on various operating systems like Android, Windows, iOS, and macOS. Therefore, it gives you more functionality because it is versatile enough to work on various platforms and with several other apps.

It is a sophisticated platform packed with advanced features, but Microsoft Outlook is actually very easy to use. You can optimize its features by integrating it with other Microsoft tools like Excel, PowerPoint, Word, and SharePoint. If you are looking for an email client for your business that can do it all, this is it.

Outlook features a built-in calendar, lots of storage, an efficient spam filtering system, and 5 GB free storage with OneDrive. Other advanced features include custom email domain names, automatic deletion of dangerous attachments, and message encryption. If you upgrade your Microsoft Outlook account, you can get more storage for your email tool. You can also extend the basic functionality of Microsoft Outlook by installing Outlook add-ins.

Microsoft Outlook may be one of the best email clients currently available. But there are several other options. It depends on what your needs are.

what makes a great email client


Gmail is an excellent alternative. This email client was developed by Google and released in 2004. The free email service gives users up to 1GB of free storage and is one of the most popular email clients for professionals and for personal use. 

Even though Gmail was not the first email client to be introduced, it was the first web-based email client and paved the way for other interactive email clients. It has been more than 15 years since it was released and it still remains relevant to this day.

Gmail offers intuitive tools such as the ability to categorize your messages based on labels or tags. This makes it easy to sort through your emails based on what category they fall under. It is also possible to manage multiple Gmail based accounts from a single interface, and you can also set up email forwarding. The powerful spam filter tool on Gmail makes it easy to avoid or get rid of spam messages from your inbox so you’ll know what emails are worth your time looking into. 

The strong integration capability available in Gmail is another reason why it is preferred by lots of personal and professional users. You can easily integrate it with other Google tools such as Google Docs, Calendar, and Sheets, and of course, it’s built by Google, which means it is based on a powerful search algorithm allowing you to easily navigate archived messages.  


This is a free and open source email client that is suited to users who value their privacy. While the first two clients listed above are developed by massive tech companies, Microsoft and Google, Thunderbird is different. It is developed by a company that is a subsidiary of Mozilla and is designed more for personal use rather than professional or business use. Despite not being developed by major tech companies, Thunderbird boasts an impressive features list. You can expect the standard email features such as filtering, searching, and archiving however, it goes beyond that to offer more advanced capabilities such as managing large files, unified inbox for multiple accounts management, and the ability to use add-ons to optimize the functionality of this email client.

The area where Thunderbird excels most is in terms of offering security and privacy for users. It has the ability to detect and filter spams and phishing emails and you will be warned when there are suspicious links in the email. 

Thunderbird is an open source email client, which means anyone can customize the app to suit their needs. The lack of access to mobile apps is one of the biggest downsides to this email client, for now. 


Another alternative to Outlook and Gmail, Mailbird is suited for personal or business use. According to the website, it helps you “save time when managing multiple accounts,” and offers two different versions: Personal and Business. 

With the Business version you can personalize your email interface, a nifty touch that makes your email experience more personalized, and the ability to integrate with many apps and tools such as Google Docs, Google Calendar, Dropbox, Slack, WhatsApp, and more. This helps to facilitate a more streamlined workflow. 

Mailbird has some downsides, too. One of them being the lack of support for filters, which makes it difficult to organize your inbox, problematic if you receive tons of emails on a daily basis (which is typical for most professionals). 

Windows Mail

Another one of the oldest email clients in existence, Windows Mail has been around since the 1990s and many professionals use it as a secondary email client due to its simplicity and user friendliness.

Windows Mail has a variety of options for personalization and notifications,  you can set up automatic replies for a certain category of emails, and can even create a custom signature for your email responses. 

One of the most useful features of this email client is the Focused Inbox which allows you to create a separate inbox for certain types of emails that you read on a regular basis. Those that do not belong to this category are designated to the regular inbox. However, you can manually move emails to the Focused Inbox. All you have to do is right-click on that email and select the “Move to Focused” option. 

The primary focus of this email client is basic and simple features, which are what most people are looking for in an email tool. 

Edison Mail

Edison Mail is free, mobile-focused and equipped with powerful features designed to make organizing your emails a breeze. 

Since it has a mobile-first approach, Edison Mail makes it easy to manage your email accounts on-the-go. Whether you have a Gmail, Outlook, or Yahoo Mail address, you can easily access it via Edison Mail.

Edison Mail has a built-in assistant and provides notifications about travel time, weather, incoming emails, and more. You can even use the automatic unsubscribe option from promotional emails and newsletters. 

Since this is a free email client, Edison Mail uses aggregate commerce information to monetize the platform. This brings you to the main downside of using this email client – it is not as private as other clients. 

The Bat!

If you are looking for a highly secure email client, The Bat! may be your best option in the market. Except for Outlook, this one has the most robust list of features that you can use to increase productivity. You will find the common features such as message filtering and the ability to organize into folders and if you have trouble figuring out how certain features work, it has an excellent forum section and support.

Its real strength is its ability to send encrypted messages. Upon launch, you can set a master password for your email, this will store and send your messages and other files in an encrypted channel and prevent executable files from being automatically opened, as well as those with double extensions. 

This email client is more utilitarian than others, but it gives you enough customization ability to personalize the interface and has extra features such as a stock-like ticker for unread emails, QR codes, and more. 


If you like to use email as a collaborative tool, then you need Spike in your arsenal. This email client transforms your inbox into a fully functional, conversational workspace. Think of it this way: it displays your inbox more like the dashboard of WhatsApp or iMessage. 

Indeed, Spike is aimed at teams that are looking for a better way to communicate and stay on top of their projects. It is more than just an email platform because it gives you a chat-like experience. If you are looking for alternatives to dedicated chat apps, then this is a great option; plus, you can get email functionality, too. 

This is a free email client, but you have up to 5GB storage, as well as notes and tasks functionality. If you want to get unlimited features and more storage, you can choose the paid version valued at $4 per month (per account).

choosing the best email client

The Bottom Line

If you rely on email as part of your daily communication – for personal and professional purposes – it is imperative that you choose your email client carefully. The right email client will give you tons of functionality allowing you to maximize productivity and make your workflow more efficient. Use the information above to help you choose the best tool for your needs.