If you have a cloud hosting plan and you set up an e-mail address, you might take the option to send and receive emails for granted, but in fact, that isn't always the case. Sending emails isn't always included in the web hosting plans that companies feature and an SMTP service is necessary to be able to do that. The abbreviation signifies Simple Mail Transfer Protocol and that is the piece of software that permits you to send e-mails. If you work with an e-mail app, 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 email server deals with its emails. After some system data is interchanged, your SMTP server delivers the e-mail to the remote IMAP or POP server and the e-mail is finally delivered in the related mailbox. An SMTP server is needed if you use some kind of contact page form as well, so if you use a no charge hosting package, for instance, it is very likely that you won't be able to use this type of form as most cost-free web hosting companies don't allow outgoing e-mails.