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Don’t clutter your inbox. Here’s how to access multiple inboxes, add signatures, recall emails, and more.
While corporate and video chat services like Zoom and Slack have become embedded in the business zeitgeist of 2020, email is still a big part of most of our work and private lives. Also, there’s a good chance that at least one of your email accounts is via Gmail, which has over 1.8 billion active users at the start of 2020.
While you probably know the basics of Gmail, there are many Gmail features and tricks you may have missed that can help you get your digital life in order. Did you know that there are also third-party apps that work with Google’s email service, such as Kiwi for Gmail, which combines multiple accounts into one app?
Even if you’re a seasoned Gmail user, here are 10 tools and tips to help you work smarter (not harder) with Gmail.
Even if I freely use the select all plus delete combination, it doesn’t take long for my inbox to spiral out of control. Fortunately, there is another way to parse the old digital weeds in your inbox. If you’re sure you don’t need any email before a certain date, you can type “before:<DD/MM/YYYY>” in the search field and enter the date you want. This will filter your inbox so you can more efficiently use the select all button to delete old emails.
If you have multiple active Gmail accounts, you can easily switch between them. Click on your profile icon in the top right (mobile or desktop) and select Add Another Account. From there you will simply log in and in the future you will be able to access it when you click on your profile icon. However, if you don’t access one of the accounts often enough, you’ll be signed out.
With so many websites asking for your email address these days, your inbox can start to look like the Wild West. You may also want to better organize emails and prioritize those from certain people. This is where filters come in handy. To set a filter, open Gmail, click the settings cog and select See All Settings. From here, click on Filters and Blocked Addresses > Create New Filter.
You can customize your filter to organize emails by sender, recipient, subject, keywords, and other factors. Once you have the properties you specified, click Create Filter.
Creating a signature in Gmail can save you a step in composing messages and make your emails look more professional. To set a signature for all outgoing messages, open Gmail > Settings gear > See All Settings. From there, scroll down until you see Signature and click Create New. Any signatures you create will appear in Settings, where you can edit or delete them at any time.
If you’re like me, you’ve probably second guessed yourself after hitting the Submit button at least once. Fortunately, Gmail has a bounty feature called Undo Send. Immediately after pressing Send, a message will pop up at the bottom of the screen stating that the message has been sent, but there is also the option to Undo or View Message. When you click Undo, Gmail stops sending the message. You can also edit how long you should cancel a message. To setup Undo Send, go to Settings > See All Settings and go to Undo Send. From here you can set a 5, 10, 20 or 30 second send cancel window.
Scheduling a message is handy if you have coworkers or friends in different time zones and don’t want to risk bothering them with an email notification at odd hours. To schedule a message, type what you want to say and instead of clicking Send, click the little down arrow and select Schedule sending. Gmail suggests some possible times, but you can also manually enter a specific send time.
Gmail’s Smart Typing feature works like predictive text and aims to make your typing process easier. For example, when typing “I’ll call you”, Google Smart Typing will suggest “tomorrow”. Just press Tab to accept the suggestion; Otherwise, keep writing. If you’re not a fan of Smart Typing, you can turn it off in Settings.
Gmail’s spell check tool can take some of the stress out of sending important emails. The spell checker can help with simple hiccups from typing too fast, as well as words you’re not really sure of. And Gmail keeps it underlined if it changes the word, so you can choose to undo the change if you don’t like it. Besides that, Gmail also has Grammar and AutoCorrect features. Everything can be turned on or off in Settings > Spelling.
We’re all stuck in a group of emails that just can’t seem to calm down. Next time this happens, open the annoying email, click the three-dot settings icon just above the email subject line, and select Mute from the drop-down menu. Just like with Undo Send, you’ll have the opportunity to Unmute if you accidentally clicked it.
Tags can make your inbox more manageable. These are kind of like filters (and you can set a filter to email specific tags). Tags are located in the sidebar where you will find the Inbox, Sent, Junk, and other folders. Scroll down and click Create New Label. From here, you can name your tag and create group tags. For example, if you’re organizing for school, the main tag might be Biology Class, and you can group tags about class projects and submitted assignments.