18 Gmail Tricks You Probably Don't Use (But Should)
They say we only use 10 percent of our brains. I think we only use 10 percent of our Gmail's features. Let's fix that.
1. Undo a sent message
Having second thoughts? Google offers a quick, life-saving tutorial to set an incremental amount of time where you can flip the “abort” switch. You’re welcome.
2. Make Gmail your default mail app
Seems like a no-brainer, but this extension will make sure whenever you click on an email address in any browser, it’ll open a new compose window in Gmail, rather than Apple’s next-to-useless Mail app.
3. See who’s opened your email
These days, there are dozens of services that’ll notify you once someone’s clicked into your messages. Sidekick is a solid option that lets you know if your recipient has read your email, and won’t notify them that you’re sneakily tracking their activity.
4. “Unsubscribe” from junk mail all at once
Check this site, enter your email address, and instantly see all of those outdated gym newsletters (yeah right), Seamless offers, and everything else you’ve unwittingly signed up for and unsubscribe in one fell swoop.
5. Track down your storage-sucking messages
Though Gmail promises that you "will never delete an email again," if you’re running out of space, this service locates the emails that are taking up the most room in your inbox, so you can delete ‘em and lighten your load.
6. Make 'Reply All' the default
Why the hell would you want to do this? Well, if you work in an environment that relies on chain emails, setting your default to “reply all” rather than just "reply" means you’ll never be that asshole who forgets to pass on some critical info. You can access it in the "General" section of settings.
7. Download the Google Calendar app immediately
Finally, get a streamlined view of your calendar on your phone. It even adds photographs to each of your events so you can scan your schedule with ease, making you a productivity machine.
8. Access Gmail offline
Try as we might, we can’t always be wired in every second. This app lets you write and access emails without Internet, so you’re ready to send them the moment those bars come back.
9. Automatically send messages to certain folders
To access them, go to Settings, Filters, and Create new filter. Now, messages from certain people or messages with specific keywords can be directed to a folder of your choosing.
10. Stalk your contacts
Or at least the next best thing. This extension adds a sidebar that will show the Twitter handle, LinkedIn profile, even most recent status updates from email recipients so you know who you’re dealing with.
11. Encrypt your messages
Perfect for the paranoid techie, SecureMail lets you send encrypted emails with an agreed upon key that your recipient and you have chosen to decode it.
12. Find out which emails matter most
An incredibly helpful way to determine how crucial an email is at a glance, the personal level indicators can be accessed through the General section of the Settings menu. Once activated, they’ll display a single arrow ( › ) next to any messages sent to a group, and double arrows ( » ) to messages addressed only to you.
13. Never lose a message again
Keep forgetting to reply to certain emails? Download this extension, which will automatically remind you if you’ve neglected to answer a message after a set amount of time, and send it back to the top of your inbox.
14. Learn your keyboard shortcuts
Google keeps a convenient list of all the shortcuts that are always turned on as well as the optional ones right here, so you can use those keystrokes to send a message, add a BCC, and more—without tiring out those clicking fingers.
15. Finally silence those noisy email chains
Have officemates that are a little too liberal with the “Reply All?” Shut them up by opening the message, clicking “More,” and then “Mute.”
16. Schedule emails to send in the future
Many people have described Boomerang as the missing link of Gmail. This handy app lets you schedule email sends for the future, so you can work now and have your messages send when you’re long gone lounging poolside. It’ll also track who’s opening your mail, and remind you if you haven’t received a reply on something crucial.
17. Send form responses faster
If you’re constantly sending the same copy + paste emails at the office, try creating “Canned Responses.” You can enable them in Settings, in the “Labs” tab. Then in the compose window, select the "More options" arrow at the bottom to choose your pre-entered response, making it all the much faster to tell your boss “I’m right on top of that!” Time you can use to catch up on House of Cards at your desk.
18. Get a Google map image with every address someone sends
In the Labs section, enabling “Google Maps previews in mail” will show you a map every time someone sends an email with an address in it, giving you an easy reference point. There are lots of other external services (Yelp, etc) that you can opt to preview in Labs as well.