How to Build Native Email Integration with All Providers

Learn about the importance of building native email integration with all providers and why using an email API solution is the best approach.

email integration

Don’t be blinded by flashy business and social chat tools like Slack and Discord – when it comes to the cornerstone of digital communication, email still reigns supreme.

For businesses and consumers alike, email far and away outpaces any other medium. By 2025, it’s projected that more than 376 billion emails will be sent daily. In this same time span, email users are expected to surpass 4.6 billion – more than half the global population.

If you think email is slowly but surely going the way of the dinosaurs, data proves otherwise. More than 90% of people ages 15-64 use email regularly. Email is still the preferred method of communication for consumers as well. More than half of consumers prefer brands that contact them via email rather than “fresher” mediums like social media platforms or SMS messaging.

Bottom line: email communication remains critical to the success of modern businesses, particularly in the SaaS industry where data located in emails provides valuable insights and can inform a company’s decision-making. This makes it imperative to build native email integration across all email providers. 

Let’s explore email integration more in-depth and examine the best approach for building this feature into your application to achieve business success, noteworthy revenue, and productivity gains.

What is an email integration?

An email integration is defined as tools or software that connect and provide functionality to email providers like Gmail or Microsoft Outlook. This process syncs data and information from an email inbox to unite email service providers (ESPs) with other systems or tools, such as an application or a customer relationship management (CRM) system.

Building email integrations allows you to sync, send, and receive email directly from a given inbox, regardless of your device or platform. This is incredibly useful for businesses looking to increase the efficiency of their email marketing campaigns and create more personalized, insights-driven email communications.

A native email integration is a direct, bi-directional point of connection between an ESP and an application through the use of application programming interfaces (APIs). Once you establish the integration, data and information can seamlessly flow between the two.

The benefits of native email integrations

Email integrations can afford businesses critical benefits and ROI gains, driving increased engagement that keeps users in your app for longer. Some of the most prominent examples include:

  • Centralizing users’ email data – Organizing and consolidating useful data from your users’ inboxes in one place allows businesses to streamline workflows and unlock actionable insights from email. 
  • Reducing context-switching – With native email integration, you can reduce the burden of users switching  back and forth between your application and their email inboxes. This can unlock some major productivity gains and greatly improve efficiency.
  • Building engaging email capabilities – Integrating with email allows your developers to tap into and build rich email features like analytics and business intelligence, single sign-on (SSO), parsing, and email authentication scopes directly within your application.
  • Improving monetization – Providing your users with value-added features like the ones listed in the bullet above will increase user engagement, making your platform more integral to everyday workflows. The end result is more revenue for your business.
  • Achieving scalability – By leveraging an email API to build email integrations, you’ll be able to provide support across all ESPs. This efficiency boost can help you grow and scale your business faster.  

Why you should build email integrations with an email API

Now that you understand what an email integration is, why they’re so important, and the benefits they can afford your business, you’re probably ready to dive head-first into this type of project. Not so fast, though!

Building email integrations in-house is much more costly and time-consuming than most businesses realize. Successfully building these types of integrations can take a team of developers tens of thousands of development hours and cost millions of dollars in build and ongoing maintenance costs.

Email APIs are great solutions for building email integrations fast and at a much lower cost. These APIs grant applications access to all the functionality available in a given email platform or provider. This includes everything from sending and receiving emails to groups or individuals, organizing your inbox, and accessing performance metrics.

Build engaging email capabilities with the Nylas Email API

The Nylas Email API is a single point of integration connecting your app to your users’ inboxes. Our solution powers bi-directional email with full Create, Read, Update, and Delete (CRUD) capabilities and enterprise-grade security, backed by an industry-leading 99.6% email deliverability rate.

With our universal email API, you can connect to 100% of ESPs in minutes without building and maintaining multiple custom integrations. This will save your developers thousands of hours, allowing them to refocus their time on advancing your product roadmap and empowering your business to launch essential communications features faster than your competitors.

Nylas is the only bi-directional API solution that supports critical functionalities such as email threading. With our solution, you’ll be able to build highly engaging email features that improve end-user productivity, reduce friction, and drive engagement.

If you want to learn more about how to build revenue-generating features using an email integration, download our guide “The ROI of Building Email Communications into Your App Now.” This guide breaks down how to turn $79M+ of annual customer savings from email integration into direct revenue for your business. It also details how you can build full-featured email communications with Nylas in just 18 days.

And if building email integration in under three weeks seems like a stretch to you, check out our case study for an account of how CIENCE Technologies saved years of development time and launched a bi-directional email integration in just a few sprints with Nylas.

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