In case you have a website hosting plan and you set up an e-mail address, you may consider the option to send out and receive emails for granted, however, that isn't always true. Sending emails isn't necessarily included in the web hosting packages that providers have and an SMTP service is required to be capable to do that. The acronym means Simple Mail Transfer Protocol and that is the software application that enables you to send emails. If you are using an e-mail app, it connects to the SMTP server. The latter then queries the DNS records of the domain, which is a part of the receiving address to find out what mail server handles its e-mails. After system information is exchanged, your SMTP server provides the message to the remote IMAP or POP server and then the email is finally delivered in the matching mailbox. An SMTP server is required if you use some sort of contact form too, so in case you have a cost-free hosting package, for instance, it is very likely that you will not have the ability to use this type of form as most free website hosting companies do not allow outgoing email messages.