The Better Than Ultimate Guide To Gmail

Gmail is an amazing tool. But, chances are good you have only scratched the surface of how amazingly powerful a tool it can be.

lord of the rings

In this guide, we are going to show you the very best Gmail tricks, hacks, and tips we’ve been able to scour from across dozens of top sources including Hubspot, Mashable, and more.

Want to turn your Gmail into a productivity powerhouse?

Maybe you need help managing your email leads?

Need to make sure your Gmail account is as secure as possible?

Are you trying to become more organized?

Do you want to make using your inbox faster?

We’ve got you covered:

Gandalf in Lord of the rings

Index – The Better than Ultimate Guide to Gmail

1. Create and link tasks with emails
2. Schedule meetings inside Gmail
3. Add Trello boards to your Gmail
4. Verify Authenticate Senders
5. Find out what Emails are being tracked
6. How to delete sent emails with Gmail
7. Find Out Who Gave Out Your Email Address
8. How to use Gmail offline
9. Turn Gmail group emails into chat conversations (mobile only until April 2016)
10. Turn Emails into chats with real people, and ignore other messages (mobile only)
11. Tinder-ize your Gmail inbox (mobile only)
12. How to preview any email without opening it
13. Share Gmail labels with other Gmail users
14. Canned Responses
15. Save Email attachments in Google Drive
16. Snooze Gmail messages and conversations for later
17. Get your contact’s social profiles, job titles, company details, and more
18. How to send emails from different addresses (even non-Gmail ones)
19. See details like your recipient’s Linkedin profile, Skype address, and website in Gmail
20. Know when someone opens your email and get reminders to follow up
21. Unsend any Email using Gmail
22. Make your own keyboard shortcuts
23. Paste in Gmail without source formatting
24. Search and send GIFs in Gmail
25. Share large files using Gmail
26. Speed up Gmail
27. Keep Gmail as the default email app
28. Gmail keyboard shortcuts cheat sheet
29. Mute conversations in Gmail
30. Find out if someone else has access to your Gmail account

 

Gandalf the white

The Better than Ultimate Guide to Gmail:


 

1. Create and link tasks with emails

Make tasks while reading any email that are linked back to the message

When reading any message, click the “more” button from the top menu and select “Add to tasks“. You can then edit the task to include a due-date, reminders, and more. Any task created in this way also notes any related messages which you can refer back to if needed.


 

2. Schedule meetings inside Gmail

Resolve meeting times by proposing available times, and allowing your attendees to indicate where within your indicated timeframe they are also available to meet.

Mixmax is a popular Chrome extension for Gmail that lets you schedule meetings using availability. You can propose a range of meeting times, and allow your recipients to select what works for them until you narrow down the ideal time to meet. Mixmax also includes a range of other options like in-email polls, tracking, and more.


 

3. Add Trello boards to your Gmail

Organize your emails into boards just like cards in Trello to keep things organized or create a workflow

Source: sortd.com
Source: sortd.com

Sortd is a smart skin for Gmail that turns your inbox into a board where you can drag and drop emails into columns following any workflow or sorting order you want. This works great for contact or email workflows for sales teams, as well as project management and planning.


 

4. Verify Authenticate Senders

Ensure emails from major retailers and brands are genuine with this Gmail labs feature

gmail authenticated senders

Go to settings, labs, and activate the “Authentication icon for verified senders” feature. After reloading, any major brands commonly targeted by spammers including Amazon, and Paypal will show up with a key symbol if they are from a legitimate address used by that company.


 

5. Find out what Emails are being tracked

Even before you open them, know what emails are being tracked by their sender.

Source: Ugly Email

Install Ugly Email, and anytime your email contains a tracking script it will appear with what the extension calls “The evil eye”. That way, you can always be sure when someone may be alerted that you opened their message – a valuable piece of information when you might not be able to get back to it right away.


 

6. How to delete sent emails with Gmail

Revoke anyone’s access to any email message using a gmail Chrome extension.

delete sent email

Dmail is a chrome extension that let’s you “delete” sent messages using Gmail. What it actually does is allow you to revoke access the the email. You can delete a sent message at any time. Or, you can choose to indicate a period of time before the message deletes itself. Best of all, your recipients don’t need to use it to read your emails.


 

7. Find Out Who Gave Out Your Email Address

Use Gmail’s account name rules to create unique email addresses that work with your Gmail account.

gmail alias

Did you know that punctuation is superfluous in Gmail email addresses? You can add “.” or “+” anywhere in your existing Gmail address and it will still appear in your inbox. So, anytime you are signing up for something, try a different variation “[email protected]” and make a note of it. Then, you can search or even set up a filter to catch when someone uses that email configuration to send you something.


 

8. How to use Gmail offline

How to access your messages even when you don’t have access to the internet on your laptop or PC.

gmail offline

Gmail Offline is a Chrome app that let’s you check your gmail accounts even if you aren’t online. Just make sure to at least activate it for each of the Gmail accounts you manage. Also, it’s a good idea to use it occasionally so it can grab all your most recent emails for offline use.


 

9. Turn Gmail group emails into chat conversations (mobile only until April 2016)

Turn back and forth emails between a group of recipients into a real-time chat where you can share videos, files, and collaborate on projects.

turn gmail emails into chat

Unfortunately, Hop is only available on mobile. But, it is releasing a web extension in April this year. With Hop, you can turn any email conversation or group conversation into a chat just like any other chat client.


 

10. Turn Emails into chats with real people, and ignore other messages (mobile only)

Identify emails from real people, and engage with them in a chat-like interface. At the same time, ignore non-personal correspondence like newsletters and marketing emails until you get back to your computer

gmail emails into chat

Mailburn is an iPhone application that let’s you turn Gmail emails from people into conversations like a chat program (think “Whatsapp”). What makes Mailburn different, however, is that it organizes anything not directly from a person into a newsletter feed, allowing you to manage emails from people more quickly and save the announcements, sales, notices, etc for later.


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11. Tinder-ize your Gmail inbox (mobile only)

Swipe to keep or discard messages. take on messages one at a time.

tinder your gmail inbox

Triage is a mobile-only email client that works with Gmail. If you have ever used Tinder, then the idea will be familiar to you. You get one message at a time. You can either choose to reply, archive, or keep it for later and it is shuffled back into your deck.


 

12. How to preview any email without opening it

Add a third column to your Gmail window with a preview of the selected message like in Mailbird, Outlook, and other Email clients.

Gmail doesn’t include a preview pane by default. However, you can activate it by going to settings>labs and activating it by scrolling down to “Preview Pane“, activating it, and scrolling to the bottom and clicking save.


 

13. Share Gmail labels with other Gmail users

Collaborate on building better workflows using shared labels in Gmail

Source: Hiverhq.com
Source: Hiverhq.com

Installing the Hiver extension for Gmail allows you to share your labels, contacts, and more with other Gmail users. This can be great for organizations or teams sharing a workflow or any other type of email management outside of a traditional CMS.


 

14. Canned Responses

Save and send often-used responses and messages to save time.

gmail canned responses

In the settings menu, go to Labs, and activate the “Canned Responses” setting. The next time you write a message, you will be able to write your first set of responses by selecting the down-arrow and clicking “canned responses“. From that point on, you can always inject your saved responses (including merge fields).


 

15. Save Email attachments in Google Drive

Automatically download any attachments sent to your inbox in your Google Drive so you never loose them.

save gmail files in google drive

Visit Zapier‘s Gmail to Google Doc zap page. If you have never used Zapier, you will need to create an account first. Next, you will need to follow the steps to grant Zapier permission to manage your Gmail account and your Google Drive accounts. Once set, your zap will deliver every attachment to your specified Google Drive folder.


 

16. Snooze Gmail messages and conversations for later

Remove messages from your inbox to address them in an hour, a day, a week, or more – letting you clear your inbox without missing anything.

snooze gmail messages

Install the Boomerang extension for Chrome and reload your Gmail window. Now, anytime you get an email that you don’t want to take care of immediately, click the Boomerang button on the top menu bar and select a time when you would like it to appear back in your inbox.


 

17. Get your contact’s social profiles, job titles, company details, and more

See your recipient’s twitter profile, latest tweet, Facebook updates, linkedin profile, and demographics.

Source: Fullcontact.com

FullContact is a Chrome extension that brings every detail about your Gmail contacts into a side-pane alongside your messages from them. You can also make notes, apply labels, and add them via other social networks you may not have connected with them yet. An added bonus for sales people or HR is that it also pulls through details on your contacts company including it’s social profiles and activity.


 

18. How to send emails from different addresses (even non-Gmail ones)

Reply to emails from a different Email address than the one the original message was sent to.

send from gmail

Go to settings, Accounts & Import, and add your other email accounts in the “Send mail as” section. Once added, you will be able to click on your portrait in any quick-reply or pop-out message composer window to select which account you would like the message sent from. It will also apply any signatures you have set up.

 

19. See details like your recipient’s Linkedin profile, Skype address, and website in Gmail

Refer to details from Linkedin, your contact’s website, start Skype conversations, and more alongside your Gmail messages with them.

gmail linkedin details

Install the Chrome extension Rapportive and follow it’s steps to allow it access to your Linkedin account. After reloading your Gmail, you will begin to see all your contact’s details show up alongside their emails. In addition, Rapportive will let you know when you are not connected with someone, giving you the perfect opportunity to grow your Linkedin network.


 

20. Know when someone opens your email and get reminders to follow up

Find out when, how many times, and which recipeient has opened your message. Also, get the option to auto-create followup reminders for them.

gmail auto followup

Install the Chrome extension FollowUp and sign in using whatever method you prefer. You will also need to grant the app permission to manage your Gmail. Once it’s installed, you will see new options in your Gmail compose window including the option to track that email, send it later, and more.


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21. Unsend any Email using Gmail

Prevent any email sent using Gmail for a short period of time using this setting

unsend email in gmail

Go to the settings menu in Gmail, and on the “General” tab scroll down to “Undo Send“. Here, you can activate the feature by clicking the radio button and indicating the period of time you would like to be able to undo sending any message. When activated, this feature holds the email in your outbox before sending, giving you time to unsend it.


 

22. Make your own keyboard shortcuts

Use this Gmail labs feature to create your own shortcut combinations for often-used functions.

gmail keyboard shortcuts

Go to settings, click on the “Labs” tab, and click the radio button to activate Custom keyboard shortcuts. Then, click save at the bottom of the labs page to reload Gmail with Custom Keyboard Shortcuts activated. If you go to settings with the labs feature active, you will see a tab marked “Keyboard Shortcuts” where you can now change or add your own


 

23. Paste in Gmail without source formatting

Paste content in any gmail message without the source formatting so it matches your default font, color, size, and weight.

Go to settings, Labs, and activate the “Authentication icon for verified senders” feature. After reloading, any major brands commonly targeted by spammers including Amazon, and Paypal will show up with a key symbol if they are from a legitimate address used by that company


 

24. Search and send GIFs in Gmail

Search for, and inject animated GIFs directly into your email messages.

GIFs in Gmail
Source: Giphy.com

Giphy’s Chrome extension allows Gmail users the ability to search through it’s database of popular gifs, and include them in the body of their emails simply by clicking the icon in the formatting toolbar.


 

25. Share large files using Gmail

Send links along with your message with permission to access the file, allowing you to send large files without worrying about limits.

gmail send large files

Dropbox has a great Chrome extension that allows you to include sharing links to your Dropbox files without having to open Dropbox and copy/paste it manually. Best of all, this method allows you share giant files in a jiffy.


 

26. Speed up Gmail

Find and delete large, old emails to speed up your Gmail

speed up gmail

FindBigMail finds, sorts, and lets you delete big emails. This can have an amazing effect in speeding up your Gmail account. It can also make it much faster to check your Gmail account using email clients, since they need to download your messages.


 

27. Keep Gmail as the default email app

Force mailto: links and other applications to open using Gmail, and prevent them from opening with other email clients.

force gmail as default

Send with Gmail not only adds a small button in your Chrome task bar that allows you to compose quick emails. It also forces any links or prompts to open your default email client to use Gmail. If you routinely find your system trying to open native email clients instead of your Gmail, then this extension is for you.


 

28. Gmail keyboard shortcuts cheat sheet

Access a quick overview of all the Gmail keyboard shortcuts and a detailed description of what each does.

gmail keyboard shortcuts cheatsheet

To activate the keyboard shortcuts and get access to the cheatsheet, go to Settings > General > Keyboard shortcuts and select the radio button next to “Keyboard shortcuts on.” Save your settings before exiting. With the shortcuts activated, you can press Press Shift–? any time to display a complete cheatsheet with all the keyboard shortcuts.


 

29. Mute conversations in Gmail

Prevent further emails in the current conversation thread from showing in your inbox.

mute gmail

To prevent any further emails in a email thread from clogging up your inbox, click on “more” with the email conversation open. Then, click on Mute. No more emails in that thread will show up as new emails in your inbox.


 

30. Find out if someone else has access to your Gmail account

See if anyone else has used your email account by checking your Gmail recent activity logs.

gmail recent activity

If you are concerned your account has been hacked, you can check your Gmail activity logs by scrolling to the bottom of your Gmail window and clicking on “Details” (see screenshot). A new window will open with all your account activity including extension, app, and client access logs. When in doubt, it’s best to change your password anyway.


SCULPTURE & ART

 

Is there a trick we missed?

Please, share it with us in the comments. We’d love to hear how you’ve found a better way to use your Gmail.

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  • pns7

    nice pro

  • speedyninja

    Tabs

  • great

  • Zohan Zurich

    Saving attachments to gdrive is convenient.

  • MSerif

    Useful interface

  • Roberto

    When Contacts sync?

  • MohammadWasiullah

    Really good knowledge collection.
    I like UglyEye feature in gamil.

    Thanks
    Mohammad

  • Roalith

    My favorite feature of Gmail is their Web client has a dark/night theme.

    • Christin Baumgarten

      Mailbird has implemented that too:-) give it a try and let us know what you think:-)

  • dzdot

    It’s the most complete email service, but if I had to say which feature I like the most (for the moment of course), I think I’d choose “Sending emails from different addresses (even non-Gmail ones)”

  • Pedro Falcão

    Nice article. My favourite feature is the ability to aggregate several e-mail accounts using Gmail. One can access via POP or IMAP seamlessly.

  • Andre Khrisna

    Super awesome!
    I love Gmail feature number #25 to send huge files 🙂

  • My favourite feature of Google Inbox is the UI. It’s quite pretty.

  • alexkuskus alexkuskus

    Very nice but what is with very important and simple thing: Synch gmail contact with Mailbird? I can not understand that you didnt resolve this problem yet. How we can use Mailbird with no synch contacts?

  • kristenhendricks

    My favorite Gmail feature is the ability that a user has to unsend an email. Thanks for the fantastic opportunity to win!

  • SlG2

    I like the labels. I also like the stars

  • Leekelo

    Contact sync with Gmail and Outlook hit today!! Finally!! Thank you Mailbird!