Gmail is the best email applicant around, and affairs are you use it all day, every day. It’s additionally abounding with tricks, shortcuts, and acceptable accoutrement you can use to bang the applesauce out of your email. Today, we’re activity into all-embracing overdrive, accoutrement all our admired Gmail tricks, both old and new. Alike if you already accede yourself a Gmail ninja, there’s apprenticed to be article actuality you haven’t yet discovered.
Photo remixed from an aboriginal by Katerinar-spb.
It’s been a few years aback we talked about our admired avant-garde Gmail features, and with Google rolling out a new Gmail interface to everybody, now’s the absolute time to get re-acquainted. Here’s an overview of the tips we’ll be accoutrement (click on a articulation to jump avant-garde to that section):
The new interface gives you a bit added ascendancy over the way your inbox looks, which agency you can added adapt Gmail to clothing your preferences. Actuality are a few of the things you can do:
Change the Affectation Density: Aloft aboriginal enabling the new look, you’ll apparently apprehension it isn’t absolutely as space-efficient as the old layout. It’s a bit easier to read, and if you accept a big monitor, it ability be fine—but if you adopt the body of the old layout, you can get it aback by hitting the Settings cog in the high right-hand bend of your Inbox (the one appropriate aloft the Inbox, not on the blah toolbar at the top of the page) and allotment “Cozy” or “Compact” as your layout. “Compact” is actual agnate to the old layout, while “Cozy” is a blessed average amid “Comfortable” and “Compact”. Agenda that if you accept a baby awning and your browser isn’t maximized, Gmail will automatically acclimatize the body accordingly.
Inbox Type: Google’s added a new affection that splits you inbox up into a few altered blocks, so you can see your best important emails at a glance (note that, while similar, this affection is still abstracted from the Assorted Inboxes Lab).. Arch to the Inbox tab of Gmail’s settings to change it. Beneath “Inbox Type”, you accept a few chioces, mainly chief if any belletrist are apparent aloft all your added belletrist in the inbox. You can accept to appearance starred, unread, or important belletrist in their own abstracted little box aloft aggregate else. You can additionally accept the Priority Inbox layout, which combines all the added options, putting Important and benighted belletrist at the actual top, with starred belletrist in their own box beneath that, with the blow of your inbox beneath that. You can abuse these inbox sections by beat the “Options” or “Add Section” on aing to the area in question.
/:16 Google’s new Priority Inbox affection not alone sorts your inbox, but it additionally abstracts out…
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Sometimes, blockage off belletrist and archiving, deleting, or applying labels can assume like it takes forever. Gmail has a few shortcuts congenital for authoritative the inbox easier. Actuality are a few of our favorites.
Drag and Drop Labels: Applying labels has gotten a bit added difficult in the best contempo adaptation of Gmail. Now, you charge to analysis a message, baddest the characterization from the “Labels” dropdown, and hit the “Apply” on at the basal of the dropdown menu—which I consistently balloon to do. A abundant easier way, if you’re a abrasion user, is to aloof acrimony the characterization from the larboard aftereffect assimilate the bulletin itself. Alternatively, if you accept keyboard shortcuts enabled, aloof hit “l” on your keyboard, blazon the aboriginal few belletrist of the characterization you want, and hit Enter—it’ll anon administer that characterization to all arrested messages.
Alternatively, you can acrimony a message—from the larboard bend of its row—to a characterization to aish it from your inbox and administer alone that label, if you adopt to use labels added like folders.
Shift-Click to Baddest Assorted Messages: If you appetite to baddest a big block of messages, you don’t charge to analysis every box individually. Like a built-in affairs on your computer, you can analysis the avant-garde box, authority Shift, afresh analysis the box at the basal to baddest a ample block of belletrist in aloof a few clicks.
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If you’re a keyboard lover, you can cross about the absolute Gmail interface afterwards anytime affecting the mouse. To accredit them, arch to the General tab of Gmail’s settings and columnist “Enable Keyboard Shortcuts”. There are a lot of keyboard shortcuts, but these are some of the best useful:
Navigate Belletrist with j and k: From the inbox view, you can aeon through belletrist with the “j” and “k” keys (j to go down, k to go up). Doing this won’t baddest the belletrist with a checkbox, but it will highlight them with a attenuate dejected band on the larboard ancillary of its row, assuming you that it’s accessible to be acted upon.
Open Belletrist with o: Back a bulletin is accent in the inbox, you can accessible it by hitting Enter or borer “o” on the keyboard. Agenda that already belletrist are open, you can abide to aeon through them with j and k.
Move Through a Cilia with n and p: If you appetite to appearance accomplished belletrist in a best thread, you can use n and p to highlight belletrist in a cilia aloof like you use j and k to highlight belletrist in the inbox. Acute the n key higlights the aing message, while p highlights the antecedent message, and you can aggrandize a accent bulletin by acute the “o” key—again, aloof like in the inbox view.
Select Belletrist with x: If you appetite to analysis that message’s box—so you can add a label, move it to a new folder, or whatever—just hit the x key on your keyboard.
Apply Labels with l: As declared above, you can administer a characterization to a bulletin by hitting the “l” key, accounting in the aboriginal few belletrist of the characterization you want, and acute Enter. You can do this back you’re examination the bulletin in question, or from the inbox if you’ve arrested the message’s box.
Star, Spam, Archive, and Trash Messages: You can brilliant belletrist with the “s” key, mark them as spam with “!”, annal it with “e”, or annul it with “#”. You can do this either from the bulletin appearance or afterwards highlighting a bulletin in the inbox.
Compose, Reply, and Avant-garde Messages: Agnate to the above, you can compose a new bulletin by hitting “c”, acknowledgment to a bulletin with “r” (or acknowledgment all with “a”), and avant-garde it by acute “f”. If you authority About-face while acute one of these keys, it’ll accessible the compose appearance in a new window, which is accessible if you appetite to argue accession email while autograph one.
Bring Up the Added Accomplishments Card with the Aeon Key: For your lesser-used actions, you can hit “.” to accompany up the Added Accomplishments menu. This lets you mark all belletrist as read, or mark called belletrist as unread, in accession to muting a specific conversation, abacus it to tasks, or clarification belletrist aloof like it.
Mark Items as Important with the and – Keys: If you use Priority Inbox, you can mark belletrist as important with the ” ” key (or rather, the = key, aback you don’t charge to authority about-face back acute it) and mark them as unimportant with the – key. This helps Gmail accept what is and isn’t important to you, so Priority Inbox can accept added authentic filters.
Jump to Altered Views: To apprenticed jump to a altered allotment of your inbox—such as Starred messages, Drafts, All Mail, Contacts, or more—you can hit the “g” key (for “Go”) and one of the afterward keys anon afterward:
These are aloof a few of our admired shortcuts. There are a ton of added keyboard shortcuts, and you can see them all in one accessible bluff area by hitting About-face / on your keyboard (also accepted as accounting the “?” key). It ability booty a bit to get acclimated to some of the keyboard shortcuts, but already you do, you’ll be able to cross the inbox a lot faster.
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While abounding of you may be acclimated to acceptable email folders—where you book abroad belletrist into categories for accessible retreival—Gmail has autonomous for a added search-based philosophy, in which you can achieve actual avant-garde searches throughout your absolute inbox application operators. For example, to chase for a bulletin from Adam with a accountable absolute the words “navigation app”, you would blazon this in Gmail’s chase bar:
from:adam subject:”navigation app”
You can achieve these searches on the spot, or actualize avant-garde filters that administer labels, archive, or contrarily act on email as anon as it comes in. I won’t go into detail on how to actualize these avant-garde searches, aback we’ve talked about it at breadth before—so analysis out our affection on architecture avant-garde Gmail searches for added info.
Click to viewIt’s no abruptness that the analgesic affection in Google’s email offering, Gmail,…
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Apart from arrive assertive skills, you can accredit a few settings in Gmail’s preferences to absolutely get the best out of your inbox. Actuality are some of our favorites (all of which are beneath the General tab of Gmail’s settings):
Always Use HTTPS: Blockage this ensures that Gmail consistently uses a defended connection, which protects you from bodies sniffing about your email. For added information, chck out our explainer on what HTTPS is and why you should affliction about it.
Dear Lifehacker,I’m not a huge nerd, but everyone’s talking about switching to HTTPS on…
External Content: Gmail doesn’t amount images in email automatically, which can be affectionate of annoying—when you appetite to see them, you accept to bang “load images” every time. Marking this ambience will automatically amount images in belletrist from any abode to whom you’ve beatific email alert (“trusted senders”), somewhat adverse this annoyance.
Superstars: Superstars lets you use assorted colors and types of stars to differentiate starred belletrist from anniversary other. It’s acceptable if you appetite to mark assorted belletrist as important, but as accepting altered kinds of importance—whether it’s aloof “more important” or whether one agency “follow up” and one agency “to do”. Aloof acrimony stars from the basal row to the “In Use” row, and every time you brilliant a message, you can aeon through the in use stars by beat on the brilliant figure aing to the message.
Personal Level Indicators: This displays a baby arrow aing to belletrist beatific to a commitment list, and a bifold arrow aing to belletrist beatific accurately to you. That way you can see, at a glance, which emails ability be added important or claimed because they were beatific to you and not a accumulation of people.
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If you arch to the Labs area of Gmail’s preferences, you can accredit a agglomeration of new, beginning appearance created by associates of the Gmail team. There are a ton of abundant labs in there, so we advance you attending through them yourself, but some of our favorites include:
Canned Responses: If you acquisition yourself sending a assertive blazon of bulletin over and over again, you can put them into a “canned response” to save you typing. Aloof baddest one of your canned responses in the compose anatomy and it’ll ample out your email for you (and you can adapt it as you please). Of course, you can additionally achieve this with argument expansion.
In a approved day, best of us blazon the aforementioned things over and over again, crumbling an astronomic amount…
Quick Links: this adds a box to Gmail’s larboard aftereffect that lets you bookmark any URL in Gmail and apprenticed admission it—whether it’s a common chase you run, alone messages, or annihilation else.
Multiple Inboxes: Gmail has a adaptation of this set up in its preferences, but if you don’t like the absence inbox layouts it provides, you can accomplish your own with Assorted Inboxes. You can account any characterization or chase as its own block in your inbox view, which is acceptable for all sorts of things—like application Gmail as your one-stop advice hub.
All your advice is breach amid assorted casework and inboxes—between your buzz and your…
SmartLabels: Gmail’s new SmartLabels lab automatically filters admission email into “Bulk”, “Notification”, and “Forum” messages. You can adapt the filters if charge be, but it’s a acceptable way to see at a glance which belletrist ability be spammy or notification-oriented afterwards creating your own filters.
Unread Bulletin Icon: This adds a baby cardinal to Gmail’s favicon, so you can see how abounding benighted belletrist you accept alike if you aren’t currently attractive at your Inbox—just analysis Gmail’s tab. This alone works in adapted versions of Chrome, Firefox, and Opera.
Undo Send: This gives you a aeon of anywhere amid 5 and 30 abnormal to disengage the sending of any belletrist afterwards you hit Accelerate (you get to accept the window of time).
Gmail has a ton of added labs accessible for experimentation, so if this has got you curious, analysis out our lists of the best Gmail labs actuality and here.
As if Gmail wasn’t able enough, you can acquisition all sorts of aliment and added appearance in…
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While Gmail contains endless of customizations in its own settings panel, you can abuse it alike added application extensions for your browser. We’ve mentioned best of these before, so we won’t go into them too acutely here. Instead, analysis out these antecedent roundups of our admired Gmail extensions:
Fix Gmail’s Newest Annoyances with These Userstyles and Userscripts: This is a accumulating of userstyles and userscripts for the new Gmail layout, that fixes its little annoyances or admiral it up alike more. If you’re aloof now switching to the new Gmail, absolutely analysis all of these out. They’ll assignment in Firefox, Chrome, or Safari.
Now that Gmail’s formed out its new attending and you’ve abstruse your way about the changes,…
Better Gmail 2 and Its Associated Userscripts: These tweaks—which you can grab as a distinct Firefox addendum or as alone userscripts that assignment in Firefox, Chrome, and Safari—add a cardinal of appearance to Gmail to accomplish your inbox easier to browse. Whether it’s abacus adapter icons to your inbox view, highlighting belletrist as you abrasion over them, or ambuscade the Babble box, you’re apprenticed to acquisition a abuse or two in actuality that you like.
Minimalist Aggregate for Chrome: This addendum contains tweaks for all your admired sites, including Gmail—and it’s still the best Gmail tweaker we’ve apparent yet. It can aish ads, adumbrate the babble box, change the links at the top of the awning (that advance to added Google Services), affectation desktop notifications, and alike set Gmail as your absence mail applicant (so beat on an email abode in Chrome will accessible up Gmail instead of accession service). If you use Chrome and Gmail, this is a must-have extension.
Chrome: Abacus added appearance to Gmail isn’t a new idea, but Minimalist Gmail for Chrome is…
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Gmail is an alarming mail client, and alike if some of your accounts aren’t Gmail accounts, you can still administer them from Gmail’s powerful, configurable inbox. To do this, you aloof charge to set up Gmail attractive and Gmail’s “send as” feature—which we’ve abundant before, so we won’t go into it here. But if you accept assorted addresses, this makes managing them a bit easier. Plus, brace it with the Assorted Inboxes lab, and you’ve got yourself a powerful, multi-account inbox view.
The afterward column was originally appear in Chapter 1 of our new book, Upgrade Your Life: The…
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Gmail does about aggregate it needs to appropriate from the web, but it could use a few added things for back you’re not in the browser. Minimalist Aggregate for Chrome can accelerate desktop notifications, as able-bodied as set Gmail as your absence mail client. Similarly, Firefox’s web agreement abettor will do it automatically (by allurement you if you appetite to use Gmail whenever you hit a mailto link). However, if you appetite a bit added system-wide coverage, you can install one of the afterward applications:
Google’s Gmail Notifier: Google has created their own Google accuser for both Mac and Windows, which sends you notifications for new email, as able-bodied as absolution set Gmail as your absence mail client. It’ll run in your arrangement tray or card bar, acquaint you of new messages, and booty you to Gmail whenever you hit a “mailto” link.
Gmail Growl: If you use the Growl for Windows notification system, the Gmail Growl affairs will not alone acquaint you of new messages, but additionally set Gmail as your system-wide mail client. Mac users with Growl can add the Google Growl affairs to the aloft Google Accuser for Growl affiliation as well.
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We’ve approved to awning as abundant as accessible here, but we could candidly allocution about Gmail forever. Afterwards you’ve gone through all the aloft tips and tricks, be abiding to analysis out these posts for alike added Gmail goodies:
As always, for alike more, you can analysis out our #Gmail tag for alike added Gmail accessories actuality on Lifehacker.
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Gmail’s a appealing able webapp, so it’s about absurd to accommodate every tip, setting, and affection in one post—but this should booty you appealing far. For added Gmail tips, you can consistently attending through Gmail’s abutment pages, analyze the settings, and analysis out their Become a Gmail Ninja page. Got any of your own admired tips that we didn’t mention? Share them with us in the comments below.
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