How to Migrate from Exchange to Gmail: Instructions for Importing and Exporting
Our small company wanted a reliable email service that supported the BlackBerry, iPhone, and Android, and included synchronization of email and calendars.
In 2007 we had been using Outlook and had tried a couple of low-cost email providers to host our calendars, contacts, and email. These providers were lousy, or so-so at best, so we decided to abandon Outlook and give Google Mail (Gmail) a try.
Gmail was free, and included applications to install email on our BlackBerries and iPhones, and keep our phones in sync with our Google Calendar and contacts.
To Start the Move, Set Up a Gmail Account
The first thing we did was to create a Gmail account. Then we set up email for each person. After that we flipped the DNS MX record, following Google's instructions. After a few hours the emails started to arrive in our Gmail accounts.
How to Export Email From Outlook and Import It to Gmail
After we set up our account, the next step was to migrate our email out of our Exchange email client (Outlook) to Gmail.
• In Outlook go to “File: Export,” and follow the steps to export a .pst file from Outlook.
• Next, login to Gmail and go to “Settings” to enable IMAP from Google. You have to enable IMAP in Gmail for this to work.
• Add Gmail as a source to your Outlook client by adding an account to access Gmail with IMAP.
• Once added, you'll have a new inbox populated with your new Gmail account in Outlook.
• In Outlook, select “File: Import.” Select the .pst file that you exported to the Google IMAP account to now import back into Outlook, but under the Gmail IMAP account. (I had over one GB of email; it took nearly a day for the import to complete.)
How To Export Contacts From Outlook and Import Them to Gmail
• In Outlook, select the Contacts tab connected to your Exchange account.
• Select “File: Export” to create a .csv (Comma Separated Values) file of your contacts.
• Log in to Gmail. Click the “Contacts” link, then the “Import” button. The contacts should import very quickly.
Our Experience Setting Up Gmail for Our Business Email
So, was it worth it to migrate from Outlook Exchange to Gmail?
1. Gmail spam filtering alone was worth it.
2. Keyboard commands were a huge productivity booster.
3. Gmail’s archive and search feature beat putting mail in folders.
4. The Blackberry support was good enough; the iPhone application worked well; and Android and Google Mail, Calendar and Contacts were tightly integrated.
I was very happy with switching from Outlook Exchange to Gmail for our business.
Links for Setting Up Gmail
Get Gmail for your domain. This is where you start when moving your personal or business domain to Google.
Enable IMAP in Gmail. Here are the instructions to turn on IMAP in your Gmail settings.
Import contacts from Outlook to Gmail. It’s easy to get your contacts into Gmail once you have them in a .csv (Comma Separated Values) file. Just use File: Export in Outlook, select .csv as the file type, then follow these instructions.
Sync Gmail with a phone. Google Sync, an app, coordinates Gmail, contacts, and calendar with iPhone, Nokia, Windows, and BlackBerry 10 phones.