Best Gmail Management Tips

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Gmail is undoubtedly one of the most popular e-mail services on Internet with millions of active users across the globe. Google is constantly adding new and helpful features to it at a fairly consistent pace and it has become the favorite mail service for many of us. As our online contacts grow on a gradual basis, so does the inflow of business and personal emails in our inbox. Let's see some useful Gmail tips and tricks to effectively manage our Gmail accounts. You can easily implement these tips to keep your Gmail inbox tidy and clean. My personal favorites among these tips are the clever use of custom filters which can help you automate a lot of tasks to clean up the influx of emails and spam. So, let's get started and try out these handy Gmail tips and shortcuts to use our email account in a better and productive way. It's all about creating the a right mindset to use these powerful tricks for better email management which can easily help you in saving hours of precious time with minimum efforts. Let's tame our Gmail inbox!

Gmail Security Tips

Although Gmail is a pretty secure and reliable platform, we must take care of few things to ensure unauthorized access to our account is difficult. Here are some of the security measures that can be implemented to harden the security of our Gmail account.

Gmail https setting
Switch on 'Always use https' option to make your your Gmail data stream encrypted. If you have an old sluggish system, your Gmail experience may become slow afer activating this option. For activating this option go to 'Settings -> General (tab)'.

GMail 'Mail Forwarding Settings
Disable mail forwarding option to avoid auto-mail forwarding to any unknown mailing address. You can turn on this feature from 'Settings -> Forwarding and POP/IMAP' and selecting the 'Disable forwarding' radio button. Once this option is enabled, it will override any other mail forwarding rule created in your account.

Gmail IMAP Settings
Disable IMAP to prevent access of emails from any e-mail client like Outlook or Thunderbird. To turn off IMAP, go to 'Settings -> Forwarding and POP/IMAP'. It may happen that sometimes you configure any e-mail client in office PC or some other place and later forget to flush all the information. In this situation, a third person can easily get access to your account. It is always advised not to configure any e-mail clients on a shared computer, and in case you have to do that, make sure you erase all your accounts settings when you do not use that system.

Gmail filters
Gmail filters have amazing power for better management of emails. Last month, when several domain hacks were reported on a famous tech blog, hackers used Gmail filters to get the sensitive information. How they managed to do it is still a question for debate. Learning a lesson from these incidents, now I always check my filters once in 24 hours to make sure there is no suspicious mail forwarding filter which is not made by me. I strongly suggest you to do the same on a regular basis and make sure you do not open any unsolicited emails.

Adding Multiple Email Addresses to Gmail

Interestingly, you can use Gmail as a central hub for all your e-mail communication including personal and business correspondence. Gmail gives you the flexibility to use external e-mail addresses for sending emails. Let's see how to do it.

Multiple email addresses in gmail
1. Go to 'Settings -> Accounts' and click 'Add another email address' link.

2. A pop-up window will open asking you to provide 'Name' and 'EMail Address'. Click the 'Send Verification' button to receive a code for verifying your email address.

3. Enter the verification code in the text box provided in the pop-up window to complete the process. Now you can use this email address in the 'From:' field.

You can go ahead one step further by forwarding all your emails coming on external email addresses to your Gmail account. Now you never have to leave your Gmail inbox for using any external email addresses.

Creating Folders/Labels in Gmail

Another very useful feature in Gmail is 'Labels', that can be used to get the functionality of folders. Combining it with the power of Gmail filters, you can automate the process of sorting and segregating the emails.

Gmail Labels
Labels can also be compared to tags which are associated with items. To create a label choose 'New label...' from 'More Actions' drop down list. To apply a label to any email, simply open or select that mail and choose the appropriate label from 'More Actions' drop-down list. You can see all emails associated with a particular label by clicking that label name from the list of labels on the left-hand sidebar.

Automating Tasks With Gmail Filters

Gmail filter is one of the most powerful features that can make your life easy by automating day-to-day activities. With the help of filters, you can automatically delete, archive, forward, label and can do many other similar tasks. Gmail filters support advanced filtering supported by pattern searching that can fine tune your filter giving you the desired result you want from it.

GMail Filters
To build a fresh filter, click the 'Create a filter' link and follow the simple step by step wizard to create a filter as per your requirements. Some common filters are,

1. Deleting mails received from certain domains
2. Deleting mails containing certain words
3. Forwarding specific mails to specific accounts. (May keep a copy too)
4. Applying labels to mails according to their address and content
5. Archiving mails according to their address and content
and much more...

With filters, we can automate these common tasks and can reduce our burden to a great extent.

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