When you've got a shared hosting plan and you create an email address, you may take the option to send and receive messages for granted, but in fact, this isn't always the case. Sending e-mail messages isn't always included in the website hosting packages that companies have and an SMTP service is required to be capable to do that. The acronym means Simple Mail Transfer Protocol and this is the software application that allows you to send e-mails. If you use an email application, it connects to the SMTP server. The latter then looks up the DNS records of the domain, that is a part of the receiving address to find out what mail server handles its email messages. After system data is exchanged, your SMTP server provides the e-mail to the remote IMAP or POP server and the e-mail is finally delivered in the matching mailbox. An SMTP server is necessary if you use some sort of contact page too, so in case you work with a free of charge hosting plan, as an example, it's probable that you will not have the ability to make use of such a form as many free hosting companies do not allow outgoing email messages.