Gmail Email Limits – Why, How Many, and When?

6 min read

If you’ve ever wanted to send an email to a lot of people, you may have stopped yourself not knowing what the consequences might be. We love your smart thinking! You’ve come across some information here that will help answer all of your Gmail emailing rules for limits on sending and receiving and what Gmail’s email limits are. 

When sending a large amount of emails out for a sales campaign, there are some things you want to consider beforehand. For starters, ensure that what you’re sending is relevant to who you’re sending it to. You’ll also want to consider your options when it comes to reaching out.

There are many different ways to contact people you’d like to build a business relationship with, and cold emailing on LinkedIn is a great one in addition to those you already have an email for. But if you’ve got a list of emails you haven’t reached out to (at all or in a long time), this is a great opportunity for you to do just that. Try these tips to do so via Google.

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Different Gmail Account Types 

There are two main types of Google email accounts: Gmail and Workspace (formerly G Suite) with Gmail being your everyday user, and Workspace being a professional account generally for companies with numerous users.

You likely have a Workspace account if the domain (the part after the @ sign in your email) is your company name and not ‘Gmail.com’. If you created your account on Gmail, you did so for free whereas on Workspace – unless you’re on a trial version – you (or your company) did not.

Gmail Email Limits: What is the “Sandbox”? 

The Sandbox is a term coined for the period of time between creating a new email on their platform and the time when they deem you not a bot. In other words, when you start a new account on Gmail or Workspace from scratch. This is the lag time between determining whether you’re a human or a bot. 

When starting a new account, you’re essentially on probation for 4-8 weeks approximately. Only Google knows the exact logic behind it! They expect the natural sending of emails from a real person to be progressively increasing. If they see too many emails being sent too quickly, you’ll get two warnings and then be banned. 

In addition to tracking if you’re progressively sending emails, they look to see if you’re also receiving emails with attachment and photos as well as regular plain text. One important piece of this is that they’re opening your emails – and especially not marking them as spam.

Essentially they seek to learn if you’re a real person! Google knows that if you have a new email, especially within a company, that you’ll receive mostly internal emails for the first few days. Over time, they’ll see that you’ll start sending and receiving external emails and conducting ‘normal’ email activity. Some of these will naturally have attachments, others images, others still a fully designed email. 

After a few weeks, you would normally be integrated and part of the team. The algorithm then labels you as an actual human, and removes you from the sandbox. While this takes a few weeks, it’s generally for new emails you’ll be relegated to these restrictions.

Why is There a Limit in Sending and Receiving Emails?

Unfortunately, there are bad companies and people out there that try to game the system. They’ll try to work around spam laws and blockers by creating mass emails and using spam bots to con people. 

Gmail, therefore, puts these limits on because they want to maintain their sending reputation to not be labeled as spam by other email platforms. This is especially true for company emails who have strong email systems built for protection against them. 

Because of this, you want your legitimate email to actually be received by the intended person, right? So follow these rules and you won’t get blocked!

What Are Gmail’s Sending Limits? 

Gmail doesn’t really announce their exact algorithm. Partially because it may differ from day to day let alone account to account. So what the system will generally look for is a way to determine whether you’re a human or a bot trying to take advantage.

What this means for you is that you’ll need to ensure you’re not sending emails enmasse. This type of activity makes you look like a spam bot and will be quickly labeled as such. This is in line with what we previously discussed about the sandbox. Google will be able to detect if you are sending emails gradually and not 500 in a day all of a sudden. 

According to Google, ‘normal’ behavior is a gradual increase. They don’t expect to see a large amount when you have previously been sending 2-10 per day. The best way to start sending more emails out to potential customers or connections is to do so with purpose. 

The reason(s)? 

  1. Gmail tells you that you can send up to 500 emails per day. 
  2. Google tells you that you can send up to 2,000 emails per day in Workspace. 

What They Don’t Tell You

If you actually reach those numbers in a few days suddenly, they’ll flag your account. If you continue to send that amount, you’ll quickly be blocked. You’ll see next how you can approach this and why you should never send the max they allow.

To make sure your email isn’t banned from getting through, you’ll want to be conscious of sending quantities. Based on our experience and campaigns, here is what we recommend sending per day if you have a regularly used email:

GmailWorkspaceRecently Created Email
Super safe: 40 Super safe: 100 Gmail: 10-50
Safe: 90 Safe: 150 Workspace: 20-50
Aggressive: 150 Aggressive: 500

Stick to these guidelines – again, incrementally over time – and you’ll stay out of Google’s black list.

Is There a Limit on Receiving Email in Gmail Accounts? 

Fortunately, there isn’t a penalty for receiving a great deal of emails. This tends to lean more towards Google seeing you as a legitimate person rather than a bot. They do have recommended limits on how many, but this is not commonly achieved. Most people, even if sending a great deal, don’t end up receiving just as many back. 

In fact, if you do receive a lot back, it may even help you get out of the aforementioned Sandbox quicker! Sending emails that are relevant to the recipient is a great start. Ensure that your subject line (for starters) is not announcing a free iPad or the like. It will basically guarantee deletion.

You also want to really encourage people to respond. Ask questions, invite responses about things they may need, find out if they’re using a particular tool or not and if it’s working for them. Try not to link too much to external websites as well. Whatever it is, the more direct responses you can elicit, the better your emailing status will be. 

The Different Error Messages for Gmail 

Should you get a little carried away, you’ll receive some kind of error or warning message. Depending upon what rule you’ve broken, they’ll let you know what happened with your email(s). 

The three most common are:

  1. “You have reached a limit for sending mail.” You’ll need to wait at least a day before sending any more emails. Do so with caution (don’t send another 500) when you do so you don’t get banned.
  2. “Messages you sent couldn’t be delivered.” This means the emails you’re sending to are bouncing/not getting received. Remove these from your contacts!
  3. “A contact is getting too much mail.” This means you have sent too many emails to a single address. Either double check your list for duplicates, or stop sending to this person for a couple of days.

No matter the error message, be sure to address them promptly. Repeat offenses only make your account more susceptible to a ban. Monitor these warnings carefully and make sure to notice when they come through. They may look like a garbled mess of emails with techie terms, but they will be your key to learning what you’re doing wrong. 

Is There a Way to Get Around the Gmail Sending Limits? 

If you’re wanting to send out a large amount of emails, start by following the steps above to develop a solid standing with Google. In addition, you can use these capabilities to allow you to do a bit more, a bit faster:

External Email

One great way to send more emails per day is to use a setting in your external email service (like Microsoft Mail or Outlook) via an SMTP connection. Most commonly, businesses use API connections, and there are separate guides for general emailing protocol outside of specific services like Google.

Using SMTP allows any email service to send up to 10,000 emails per day, but we only recommend sending around 2,000. Despite coming from this stand-alone email service, the recipients’ provider (Gmail, Yahoo, etc) may label you as spam anyway.

Multiple Email Addresses

Another option is to utilize these external email systems and create separate identities/emails for them. You’ll just not be able to send from one personal, consistent email this way. It will also be more challenging for you to maintain. This goes for responding to emails received as well as managing your list.

If you have LaGrowthMachine, you can create numerous identities for each person on your team. Each person will then have their own list and limits. You can track each team members’ emails, connect it with the workflow you desire, and include multi-channel contacts. 

Google Groups

One other option is to use Google Groups. This is an option you can use to send – per their rules – up to an unlimited amount of ‘members’.  They do, however, limit the amount of members you can add when you start a new group to about 100. This is just until the algorithm trusts you’re not spamming people. 

Gmail Sending Limit Simulator 

When it comes to sending a campaign of emails to a larger list of people, we’ve come up with a safe way to determine how many you can and want to send per day versus how much you should. 

If you’d like to learn how many days will it take for me to send your entire campaign, you can simulate it here: 

Gmail Email Limit Simulator

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