How to Set Up an SPF Record for Office 365 - Step-by-Step Guide

Email authentication is critical in keeping your emails away from the spam folder.

It lets email providers know that you are who you claim to be and not some cyber criminal sending unauthorized emails. This helps increase your open rates.

The SPF email authentication method allows you to decide which servers are permitted to send emails from your domain.

If an email comes from a server not included in your SPF record, it will fail authentication and potentially not be delivered at all.

If you’re using Office 365 as your email sender, we recommend you set up an SPF record today.

Here’s how to do it.

What is an SPF record?

SPF stands for Sender Policy Framework. It’s an email authentication mechanism used by email servers to verify the authenticity of emails coming from a specific domain.

Its goal is to prevent phishing attempts and deter scammers from sending fraudulent emails that falsely claim to be coming from a domain when they really are not.

Setting up an SPF record is not mandatory; however the extra layer of security increases the trustworthiness of your domain in the eyes of internet service providers.

Additionally, having an SPF record in place increases the likelihood of your emails bypassing spam filters and reaching your audience’s inbox.

Setting Up a SPF Record for Office 365 📝

To set up an SPF for Office 365, you must add a DNS TXT record to your domain’s DNS settings, covering both your primary domain and any associated subdomains.

Your domain’s DNS settings can be found in your domain provider’s account. This could be GoDaddy or Namecheap, or if your name servers point elsewhere, it could be your hosting company.

Once you’re inside your DNS settings, locate your existing SPF record, if there is any.

You don’t want to have multiple SPF records as this could lead to complications. An SPF record is designed to allow you to add multiple senders and IP addresses to it.

For the examples below, if you already have an SPF record, you only need to add include:spf.protection.outlook.com to the value field.

So, if this is your SPF record:

v=spf1 include:spf.protection.somesendingdomain.com -all

Change it to:

v=spf1 include:spf.protection.somesendingdomain.com include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all

Setting Up an Office 365 SPF Record for All Domain Providers

If you don’t have an SPF record yet, here’s how to add one for Office 365.

While still in your domain’s DNS settings:

  1. ➡️ Click on “Add” or “Create new record”
  2. ➡️ Choose TXT
  3. ➡️ Put @ in the name field
  4. ➡️ Add the following record to the value field: v=spf1 include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all
  5. ➡️ Click save

Adding an Office 365 Record to Namecheap

  1. ➡️ Log in to Namecheap
  2. ➡️ Go to Domain list
  3. ➡️ Select your domain
  4. ➡️ Click on Advanced DNS
  5. ➡️ Click on New record
  6. ➡️ Choose TXT as the record’s type
  7. ➡️ Put @ in Host
  8. ➡️ Add the record to the Value field: v=spf1 include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all
  9. ➡️ Click ✔️

Configuring an Office 365 Record on Cloudflare

  1. ➡️ Log in to Cloudflare
  2. ➡️ Find your domain on Cloudflare’s dashboard and click on it
  3. ➡️ Click on the DNS button
  4. ➡️ In the DNS section, create a new DNS record
  5. ➡️ For type, select TXT
  6. ➡️ In the “Name” field, add @
  7. ➡️ Paste the following record in the Value field: v=spf1 include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all
  8. ➡️ Save

Setting up an Office 365 record on Bluehost

  1. ➡️ Log in to Bluehost
  2. ➡️ Go to My domains
  3. ➡️ Choose your domain
  4. ➡️ Go to DNS
  5. ➡️ Click on “Add new record”
  6. ➡️ Choose TXT record
  7. ➡️ Put @ in the Host or Name field
  8. ➡️ In the Value field, enter: v=spf1 include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all
  9. ➡️ Save!

An SPF Record Alone Is Not Enough ⚠️

Setting up your SPF record for Office 365 is a good step toward completing your technical setup.

But there are more components to take care of, like:

It’s also important to warm up your email or sending domain.

Starting to send out hundreds of daily emails out of nothing is a sure way to alert spam filters.

A tool like lemwarm can help you warm up your email and increase your open rates to 65% or more.

It takes 3 minutes to avoid spam forever

Discover how to apply these tips on lemwarm and avoid spam forever.