how to send fax from Gmail in 5 steps

​Since its launch almost 15 years ago, Gmail has ​evolved to become the ​biggest free email service in the World.  And it's not just individuals who use it for personal purposes; millions of small companies and freelance workers also use it on a daily basis to communicate with customers and providers.

​Gmail allows ​you to email with incredible speed, and contains nifty features that make communications smoother, including integration with other Google services such as Calendars and Google Drive.

But... did you know that you can also ​use your Gmail account to send fax?

Even though Google doesn't ​own a fax service, ​you can ​integrate Gmail with an online fax service​ that lets you fax from your computer, without the need of ​a machine or a dedicated line.

​Replacing your fax machine with an email fax solution can prove to be a ​step forward in your business' communications, helping you save time and money​.

​In this article you'll learn how to send your first fax from Gmail ​in just 5 steps.  The guide is very easy to follow, ​if you have sent a common email then you'll realize both methods are extremely similar.  But first, let's talk about what type of service you need for the job!

​Selecting the Right ​Email Fax Service

​To start sending fax online from your email, you need the help of an ​online fax service.  

A service will link a virtual fax line to your Gmail address, ​enabling you to send and receive faxes without leaving the email interface. It will also give you a domain that you have to add to the recipient's number when composing an email fax (more about in the step-by-step guide below).

​Gmail fax ​providers own powerful fax servers that work with FOIP (Fax Over IP) technology. They convert digital files into a fax signal in just a few seconds, ​making this technology compatible with traditional fax machines.

​To ​start using an online fax service you must sign up for a monthly plan.  Basic plans let you fax in average 300 pages per month, and ​you can find them for as low as $5 a month.  Considering that you won't need any additional equipment, this is an affordable solution for small businesses ​as well as individuals.

But hey! You don't need to start paying for a plan to follow this tutorial...

Try It for Free!

​Many of the top-rated ​online fax service​s in the market, ​including eFax ​and RingCentral let you create a 30-day free trial account​.

​Your free account ​includes the basic plan, which lets you send hundreds of pages during the month.  It also includes a virtual line to receive fax ​via email.

If you don't have an online fax account yet, go ahead and create one with your preferred provider.  You'll need one to complete the steps of this tutorial.

​How to Fax from Gmail​: A ​Step-By-Step Guide

​Are you ready to send your first fax by email?. This is a very simple process that can be completed in just 5 steps, we have added pictures to each step to help you better understand how it works.

​As you'll see, the first ​difference between a "traditional" email and an e-fax is that you enter the fax number on the TO field, followed by @ and the domain of your online fax provider.

Th​e second is that the contents of the fax ​need to be uploaded to the email message as attachment. This ​file​ will be automatically converted into a fax signal. Let's take a look at the steps to send a fax, they are very easy:

Step 1: Create a New Email Message

In the Gmail website or mobile app, create a new email message by clicking on the Compose button.

creating a new email in Gmail

Step 2: Enter the Recipient's Number

​Now you need to enter the recipient's fax number on the TO field of the email message.  ​Then, add @​ and the domain of your fax service next to it.  It should look like this:

​For instance, if you need to send fax to the number 1-343-777-5555 using eFax, this is what you would need to type on the TO field:

Each online fax service has ​its own email fax domain. Using the exact domain provided by your service is essential to have your fax delivered, so double-check it before finishing.

Step 3: Add ​a Cover Page

If you need to add ​a cover page, ​use the Subject field and/or the message’s body.

You don't need to include a cover page if you don't want to. It's an optional step for people that need to include additional information about the fax transmission.

​The design of your cover pages can be changed through your online fax account at any time.

Step 4: ​Upload Your File(s)

​Add the ​files that are going to be converted to fax.​Online fax services work with dozens of different formats including popular ones such as PDF, DOC, XLS, JPG, TIFF and TXT. ​

To attach the ​file(s), ​click on the paperclip icon (Attach files) on the bottom of the composing window. Mobile app users will find this icon on the top-right corner of the screen.

attaching fax contents to your email

Step 5: Proofread and Send

​Click on Send and your document will be sent for conversion, then forwarded to the receiver's fax machine.

​​It shouldn’t take more than a couple of minutes ​to complete the transmission​. You’ll get a confirmation message on Gmail with all the details of your fax.  If there’s an error along the way, fax services will re-try sending it multiple times to ensure ​your fax reaches its destination.

Gmail fax

​Are You Ready to ​Make the Change?

​Gmail faxing is the perfect solution for small businesses that want to decrease the time and money they spend with traditional faxing. This technology is easy to integrate in ​your company​; even if you currently have a fax line in place, you can transfer it to a digital one and keep using your fax number.

To start faxing online you just need your computer and an email fax service.  And the steps to compose a fax are so simple that even people ​who consider themselves to be technically challenged won't have a problem ​with the process.

The availability of free alternatives makes it very easy to find an online fax service that works for you. Besides price, there are other factors worth keeping into account, such as support, speed, file compatibility and the type of Google fax numbers they provide.