Did you know that Gmail has around 1 billion users? It shouldn’t come as a surprise, as around one quarter of the U.S. workforce uses this platform (Source). If Gmail is your mailing platform of your choice, learning more about its features can really transform your workday, especially as the content can be very important & sensitive. Read on to hack your way to Gmail prowess starting today! Coming up next week: our favorite Gmail plugins!
Undo Send: Arguable the worst email nightmare is accidentally hitting send before you’re ready. We recommend drafting the email before selecting a recipient to avoid this from happening, but if you’re still paranoid, there is a way for Google Labs to recall an email right after it’s been sent. Just go to Settings (button with gear) > Labs > Undo Send > Enable > Save Changes. (Please note that all Google Labs functions are in testing "may change, break or disappear" at any time") Keyboard Shortcuts: Shortcut lovers have hit the jackpot with Google Lab’s Custom Keyboard Shortcut feature. Head over to Settings > Labs > Custom Keyboard Shortcuts > Enable, then go back to Settings > Custom Keyboard Shortcuts to customize to your heart’s content. Now, you can start drafting an email with the press of a button. Mute: If you’ve been pulled into an email thread that adds no value to you, you can mute future replies by selecting More (top right) > Mute. Search Operators: Most will know the basic search operators (e.g. Chat: [email protected]) that can help narrow down the email you’re looking for. Step up your game, and see the full list. All The Stars: Most of us know how to star important emails, but there’s a host of different coloured stars and symbols that you’re missing out on! Discover them under Settings > General > Stars Reply & Archive: Reply and archive your emails automatically by going to Settings > General > Show ‘Send & Archive’ > Save. Advanced Search: Having trouble finding an email? Click on the small down-pointing arrow next to the magnifying glass of your search bar to input more details about what your searching for. You can also Create a Filter with those settings on the bottom of the pop-down menu. Unread Emails Tab: If you want to see the number of unread emails on the tab in your browser, go to Settings > Labs > Unread Message Icon > Save. Alias-based Filters: This might come as a shock, but we’re finally breaking the news to you: the periods in your alias don't actually matter. In other words [email protected] is the same as [email protected]. Not only that, you can also create filters for your alias using ‘+’ (e.g. janedoe+[filter]@gmail.com), allowing you to automatically categorize the emails as they come in. Remember, you still need to create the filters within Gmail by going to Settings > Filters. For example, you can give your colleagues the alias [email protected], which will then be aggregated in one place. Canned Responses: For almost every job, there’s an email that you have to draft over and over again. It’s time to make that a thing of the past! Select the down-pointing arrow to the bottom right side of an email draft (next to delete) and select New Canned Responseunder the Canned Responses. Give the response a name, and you’re done! Go back to the tab to manage your responses (i.e. overriding new drafts, deleting old ones, etc.) Tasks To Emails: If you have to spend more time to reply to an email, and need to do so later, you can add it to your Task List by selecting More (top right of normal view) > Add to Tasks. Verified Senders: Prevent against identity theft by enabling the Authentication Icon for Verified Senders under Settings > Labs, which will indicate which emails are from legitimate senders.
Author: Ching Lam Ip, Programme & Marketing Lead, Garage Society
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