With more and more Yahoo! Store owners coming to us to migrate them to another eCommerce platform, such as BigCommerce or Shopify, we occasionally run across some unique situations that need to be mitigated before launch. One of the more common ones has to do with Yahoo! Business Mail.
While the majority of Yahoo! Store owners have moved away from Yahoo! Business Mail years ago, some still use the service for their business email. If you’re one of them, keep reading!
When Yahoo! built many of the services under the Small Business umbrella back in the late ’90s and early 2000s, their goal was to create a suite of products (hosting, eCommerce, email, etc) that integrated seamlessly with each other.
In theory, back then it was a great way to get all of Yahoo’s products connected to each other and make Yahoo! the main hub for all business activity. Unfortunately, there was never an easy way for a store owner to rid themselves of, or keep, a certain connected service such as email.
In a perfect world, a Yahoo! Store owner who is migrating to another eCommerce platform and wants to continue to use Yahoo! Business Mail would simply change DNS records to point to the new nameserver and create an MX record that points to Yahoo! Business Mail.
However, Yahoo! does provide MX records for Yahoo! Business Mail. This means that once you leave the Yahoo! Store platform, you can no longer use Yahoo! Business Mail and will need to use an alternate service such as Gmail, Microsoft Outlook, etc.
The benefits of using a newer, more feature-packed email service over Yahoo! Business Mail should be enough to get any store owner to move. But we realize that there are some that are dead-set on keeping Yahoo! Business Mail so there is a less-than-ideal workaround if you want to keep using it.
You will continue to use Yahoo’s name servers but will need to create both a CNAME and an A RECORD that point to your store’s new platform. This workaround comes with several notes of caution:
- If your eCommerce provider moves your store to a new server or IP address your store will not resolve unless you were proactive and updated your records in advance.
- If your eCommerce provider moves your store to a new IP address and they assigned your old IP address to another store, your domain may bring up a website that isn’t yours.
- Should technical issues arise, your new eCommerce platform’s support team may have a very hard time troubleshooting the issue due to this unique configuration, or they may not troubleshoot it at all since your name servers are still pointing to Yahoo!
Obviously, moving to a new email provider is the recommended solution and it’s not necessary to wait till the last minute to do so. Switching mail providers can be done before or during your site migration process. It just needs to be complete before you launch on the new platform, as once you change your DNS records, Yahoo! Business Mail will no longer accept incoming or outbound emails for your domain.
Once again, if you currently use Yahoo! Business Mail and you switch platforms, you will need to migrate your mail to another service. Once you close your Yahoo! Store, you will no longer have access to Yahoo! Business Mail.
Scott Sanfilippo began his eCommerce journey in 1994 by co-founding one of the Internet’s first online retailers, TheFerretStore.com, which was acquired by PetCo in 2006. In 2001, he co-founded the eCommerce design and marketing firm Solid Cactus, which was acquired by web.com in 2009. Today, Scott is the General Manager of Your Store Wizards and lives in Delray Beach, FL. Scott can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.