Getting Started with AWS Simple Email Service

AWS Simple Email Service (SES) is the most reliable and cost effective email sending service that ever exists. Getting started with AWS SES does involve jumping a few hoops, especially setting up your domain's SPF, DMARC, DKIM records and getting AWS to move you out of the SES sandbox.


3/13/20242 min read

Getting started with AWS Simple Email Service (SES) involves several steps to set up and configure your email sending capabilities. If your are an Enterprise, the experts at SendWithSES can guide you through the process. Just fill in the short form here.

1. Create an AWS Account:

If you don't have an AWS account, sign up for one at AWS Signup. Follow the account creation process, including providing billing information.

2. Access AWS SES in the AWS Management Console:

Log in to the AWS Management Console. In the top search bar, type "SES" and select "Simple Email Service" from the list.

3. Verify Your Email Address or Domain:

Before you can send emails through SES, you need to verify your email address or domain. In the SES console, navigate to "Email Addresses" or "Domains" and follow the verification process.

4. Request Production Access:

By default, new AWS SES accounts are in the SES sandbox environment, which has certain limitations. To lift these limitations and send emails to a broader audience, request production access from the SES console.

5. Configure SES Identity Policies:

Set up identity policies to define who is authorized to send emails using your verified email addresses or domains. You can do this in the SES console under "Identity Management."

6. Create SMTP Credentials (Optional):

If you want to use the SMTP interface to send emails, create SMTP credentials in the SES console. This is useful for integrating SES with applications that support SMTP.

7. Create IAM User (Optional):

For programmatic access to SES, create an IAM (Identity and Access Management) user with the necessary permissions. Assign the user policies that grant SES-related permissions.

8. Set Up Email Sending in Your Application:

Integrate SES with your application or system to start sending emails. You can use the SES API or SMTP interface for this purpose.

9. Configure Email Content and Headers:

When sending emails, configure the content, subject, recipients, and other relevant headers. SES provides options for both plaintext and HTML email content.

10. Set Up Email Feedback Loop (Optional):

To receive bounce and complaint notifications, set up an email feedback loop. This helps you monitor and manage your email deliverability.

11. Monitor SES Metrics:

Regularly check SES metrics and logs to monitor email sending performance. This includes monitoring bounces, complaints, and other relevant statistics.

12. Handle Bounces and Complaints:

Implement a mechanism to handle bounces and complaints to maintain good sender reputation. SES provides options for processing bounce and complaint notifications.

13. Review SES Pricing:

Familiarize yourself with the AWS SES pricing to understand the costs associated with your email sending volume.

By following these steps, you'll be able to set up and start using AWS Simple Email Service for your email sending needs. Remember to refer to the official AWS SES documentation for detailed information and best practices.