Even though we are using apps like Zoom and Slack frequently, email is still a big part of our business and personal life. And chances are that at least one of your email accounts is on Gmail with over 1.5 billion users.
While you probably know the basics of Gmail, there are many features and tricks you might have missed that can help you streamline your digital life. (There are also third-party apps like Kiwi for Gmail that combine multiple accounts in one app.)
Here are 10 tools to help you work smarter, not more, on Gmail.
calendar If I don’t make an appointment in my Gmail calendar, I won’t remember. Usually, even if you paste an upcoming event or reminder into your Google account on your phone, these events will automatically sync across devices to your Gmail calendar. You can find your Gmail calendar on the desktop by clicking the Google Apps waffle icon and selecting Calendar. Or you can download the Google Calendar app for your iOS or Android device – it can be found by default on your Android phone.
multiple accounts at the same time If you have more than one active Gmail account, you can switch between them effortlessly. Just click your profile icon in the top right (mobile or desktop) and choose Add Another Account. From there, you will log in and later, when you click on your profile icon, you will be able to access it. If you don’t access one of the accounts often enough, it will log you out.
Create filters With
so many websites these days asking for your email address, your inbox can start looking like the Wild West. You may also want to better organize emails and prioritize those from specific people. This is where filters come in handy. To create a filter, open Gmail, click the settings gear icon 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 more. Once you’ve reached your specifications, click Create Filter.
a signature Creating a signature in Gmail can give you a step up in composing a message and make your email look more professional. To set a signature for all outgoing messages, open Gmail> Settings gear> See All Settings. From here, scroll down until you see Signature and click Create New. All signatures you have created will appear in settings that you can edit or delete at any time.
Retrieve a sent message
If you’re like me, you guessed yourself a second time after you hit the Send button. Fortunately, Gmail has an additional feature called Undo Send. Immediately after hitting Send, a message pops up at the bottom of the screen stating that the message has been sent, but there is also an option to Undo or View Message. When you click Undo, Gmail stops sending the message. You can also edit how long you have to cancel a message. To set up Undo Send, go to Settings> See All Settings and scroll down to Undo Send. Here you can set a send cancellation interval of five, 10, 20 or 30 seconds.
It’s handy to schedule a message if you have colleagues or friends in different time zones and don’t want to risk disturbing them with an email notification at odd hours. To schedule a message, type what you want to say and click the small down arrow instead of clicking Send. Gmail will suggest some possible times, but you can also enter a specific sending time manually.
Gmail’s Smart Typing feature works like predictive text and is meant to streamline your typing process. For example, when typing “I’ll call you”, Google Smart Typing suggests “tomorrow”. Press the tab to accept the suggestion, otherwise continue typing. If you are not a fan of Smart Typing, you can turn this off from Settings.
Gmail’s spell check tool can take the stress out of sending important emails somewhat. The spell checker can help with words you’re not really sure, as well as simple hiccups caused by typing too fast. And Gmail keeps the word underlined whenever you change it, so you can choose to undo if it’s not a change you want to make. On top of that, Gmail also has Grammar and AutoCorrect features. Everything can be turned on or off from Settings> Spell Check.
We’re all stuck in an email group that won’t appear silent. If that’s the case for you, open the annoying email, click the ellipsis settings icon just above the email subject line and select Mute from the drop-down menu. As with Undo Send, you have the opportunity to turn the volume up if you accidentally click it.
Labels can make your inbox more manageable. They are like a filter (and you can create a filter to send an email to certain tags). It is located in the sidebar where you will find Labels, Inbox, Sent, Junk and other folders. Scroll down by clicking Create New Tag. From there, you can name group tags as well as your tag. For example, if you are organizing for school, the main tag might be Biology Class, and you can group them into labels about classroom projects and assignments submitted.