Recently, a prospective client was trying to contact me using my contact form. After several attempts, clicking the Send button continued to produced the following message to the sender, “Failed to send your message. Please try later or contact administrator by other way”. Fortunately for me, he called the phone number I have listed on my website and left me a message.
In my search to find out what was going wrong, I decided to try a different contact form plugin. Same issue. Obviously, the problem was not with the plugins, but with something originating from my webhost.
The error message will be different depending on what contact form plugin you’re using. This is from the Contact Form 7 plugin. When I tried it with the cforms plugin, it was a different error message.
I happened upon a thread in the WordPress.org support area: http://wordpress.org/support/topic/233358 which gave me the information I needed to know in order to fix my issue. Thanks to the comment on this thread by user “cychiu”, I learned that the contact form plugins use php mail() function, and that not all webhosts allow that. Since my form worked one day, and then stopped working the next, I can only imagine something was changed on their end. I am assuming here.
The recommended workaround was to download and install another WordPress plugin called WP Mail SMTP, configure it to use SMTP settings for mail leaving my website. After installing, configuring, and testing the plugin it worked like a champ! My contact form now works like it used to.
It was easy enough to configure, I simply went into the settings I use in my Outlook to send out my email and used those settings. Took just a few minutes overall.
Another reference with great info on this is http://www.roblayton.net/archive/wordpress-not-sending-emails-anymore-solved/
Thanks to the WP Mail SMTP plugin, the WordPress.org support forum and “cychiu”, I am happily crossing this issue off my troubleshooting list and can start my birthday week with a smile and a little happy dance.
I wanted to share this recent experience with any of my readers that use or support WordPress blogs for their clients. If you (or your clients) are using a contact form plugin on your WordPress blog, you might want to verify that it’s currently working 🙂
I am currently using WordPress 2.7.1
Andrea – signing off for a shortened workweek in celebration of my 50th birthday.