[SOLVED] Contact Form 7 Reply-To Header Issue in Gmail

A few days ago I was contacted by a client in regards to an issue with a WordPress website, specifically an inconvenience caused by the Contact Form 7 plugin and the new Gmail interface (on PC).

The issue was simple: when my client would click “Reply” to an email received via the website contact form, the “To:” field would be populated with his own email address and not with the email address of the person that filled the contact form. Because of this the email responses would come back to him, which made him respond again and manually specify the correct email address. A very frustrating loss of time.

Why has this worked for numerous years and suddenly it stopped working?

At first I thought that WordPress 5.0 is somehow to blame. Gutenberg, am I right? But no, this was not the case.

The community support forum for Contact Form 7 had a dozen threads in the last ~5 days about this same issue.

The very same issue is being discussed in Gmail’s Official Help forum since 7th of November 2018, this thread right here.

Apparently Gmail on desktop doesn’t honor the custom email “Reply-to” header, not just on WordPress websites and not just for Contact Form 7 form submissions.

The (Temporary) Bug Fix

A temporary solution that works well for me has been summarized by @soulshakepower:

To make this easier to understand, check the two screenshots below. For most users, you probably have the same email address in the To: and From: fields in the form’s configuration fields, like so:

To temporarily fix the bug, all you have to do is have different To: and From: email address. The “From:” value is not really relevant, you can have anything there, as you won’t be replying to that email address. So this is how you should set it up:

Everything should work fine now, you should be able to hit Reply and the sender’s email address will be in the To: field as expected.

I hope this will save the time of at least a few WordPress users 🙂

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5 Replies to “[SOLVED] Contact Form 7 Reply-To Header Issue in Gmail”

  1. Chris

    Same problems here, WP/CF7/WP Mail SMTP. I fixed this by doing the following:

    Step 1: Make the from and to field different addresses. I used no-reply@domain.com
    Step 2: After that I cleared the field “Reply-To Email Address” in WP Mail SMTP.
    Step 3: Then I added my new address to “Don’t Replace From Field” in the advanced settings of WP Mail SMTP.

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