G Suite Knowledge Base

23 Important Gmail Features for Every Small Business

Emailing is no longer just a medium for online communication. Today, it has become a powerful tool for important and official work. There are a lot of email providers on the internet, and most of them work the same. However, Gmail is one of the most distinguished names out of all others in the field. So if you are a new G Suite user and not familiar with Gmail, this post is helpful for you to learn more about it.

gmail important features, tips and tricks

Since the 1st of April, 2004, this emailing service has seen a lot of changes and advancement. Now, after more than 15 years, Gmail is dominating the email industry like a pro. The reason behind its popularity is not only the brand name of Google attached to it but also the security and services it provides.

These services are sometimes hidden from the common mass yet can be accessed easily. After getting familiar with these hidden features, tips, and tricks, you can manage, filter, and get an all-round Gmail experience. Let’s have a look at what this email service provider has in store for you.

1. Forward email as an attachment

forward email as attachment in gmail

Sending a screenshot of an email to someone is ok but how about sending a whole email as an attachment? This is the newest feature implemented by Gmail and everybody should use it. It is not only an easy method but also proves the authenticity of the original email.

To send an email as an attachment simply right click on the email and select “Foward as attachment“. You can also forward multiple emails as an attachment at the same time. The feature is turned on by default so no need to enable extra settings for it.

1. Undo any sent mail

undo emails in gmail

Humans are known to make errors in their work. Mistakes in emails are one of the most common problems faced by users. Although this does not always result in a big tragedy; however, sometimes, in the professional field, it can lead to a bad reputation, embarrassment and, in some cases, can land you in significant trouble.

This is why Gmail has an option to undo a sent email. However, keep in mind that this feature remains active only between 5-30 seconds after you have submitted your mail.

To unlock this feature, select Settings > General > Select undo send and set the cancellation period.

2. Checking all your Gmail activities

gmail account activities

Sometimes features are not hidden in deep parts of the settings menu or an unknown tab. In a few cases, they are right in front, hidden in plain sight. One such feature is looking at your last activities using Gmail.

The users can get all the information related to all work that is done on their account. This data comprises the location of access, browser used, IP address of the device, and time of activity. This can help the user to monitor their account and check for any unknown action by an unauthorized source.

3. Self-destructing emails

gmail confidential mode

There is a trick in Gmail – called a self-destructing email – that enables the user to send an email with an expiry date. This means that the mail will delete itself after a given time. These emails have a lot of in-built features that make them more secure and safer than a standard email.

A self-destructing mail, as the name suggests, will destroy itself after a set amount of time. A recipient cannot forward, copy, print, or download these. These emails can be accessed by turning on the confidential mode.

And, that can be done while composing a mail; Choose Options > Turn Confidential mode on/off > Set expiry date and password.

4. Using an alias account

This is a handy trick that helps users to create an alias account for their email ID. This can be done using the symbols “.” and “+”. Gmail will avoid reading these symbols as special characters that differentiate one mail from others.

Hence, the email ID hellothere@gmail.com, hello.there@gmail.com, hello+there@gmail.com, and h.e+ll+o.th+er.e@gmail.com – all will receive emails in the same inbox.

This can be helpful when you want to catch hold of someone who sold your ID. This can be done by sharing any one of the alias accounts and checking who is responsible for the trade. This trick can also come in handy when applying for any email-based online services multiple times using the same account.

5. Delegate account access

grant access in gmail

In some instances, when someone else needs to access your email account, the only way to make that possible is by sharing your password. This could be hazardous, considering the increased number of cyber-crimes that occur daily.

Gmail has a feature to help you here by allowing account access without sharing or disclosing your password.

To grant another Gmail user access to your account, simply Go to Settings > Accounts and Import > Grant access to your account.

6. Organize and label your inbox

set labels in gmail

Let’s face it; everyone’s inbox is filled with a lot of newsletters, social media notifications, and many more unnecessary emails. This is why a lot of users’ inboxes look cluttered and messy. However, Gmail does not want your inbox to look this disoriented. Hence, they provide a lot of features through which you can organize your inbox.

These features include Default, Priority, and Tabbed inbox. These various inboxes can help you formulate a clean looking mailbox. Gmail also offers labels to give your emails and inbox better searchability.

To access this, select the email and select the label option or go to Settings > Labels.

7. Calling a person through Gmail

calling from gmail

Most of the Gmail users are unaware of this feature. Gmail provides the user with the ability to make phone calls. You can make a call to any of the contacts saved in your Gmail inbox.

This is done by adding the Google Talk plugin for Google Meet in your Gmail. After this, all you need is a microphone, and speaker enabled PC, and you are all set for making a phone call. These calls are mostly free in the U.S and Canada.

To start a call, you need to go to the lower-left corner of your inbox and select Make a call > type desired number, and there you go.

8. Easy to search emails

search feature in gmail

The searching algorithm for Gmail is as smooth and straightforward as that of Google. This should not be a surprise, as Gmail is a Google extension. To look for an email that is old, lost, or just hard to find is as simple as going to the search bar and typing any relevant keyword.

This process is made even more accessible and faster with Gmail’s advanced search and smart operators. To access the advanced search, just tap on the downward arrow on the right side of the search bar. This will get you options like to and from, date range, etc. to cut down the search parameter. Learning search operators like “from:”, ”subject:”, “to:”, etc will help you locate critically lost emails in a matter of seconds.

9. Easy to differentiate between spammers and verified emails

gmail spam email example

When emails are flooding in from almost everywhere, it can be tough for the user to determine which email is from a phishing scammer and which is from a verified account.

Luckily Gmail is smart enough to filter 90% of the spam email automatically to the Spam folder.

10. Keyboard shortcuts

gmail keyboard shortcuts

Some people prefer to use a keyboard for all their work, instead of just clicking over a mouse. Gmail helps its users with a lot of handy and helpful keyboard shortcuts.

These shortcuts can be beneficial for not just increasing the speed of your work but making the mailing process effortless at the same time.

These can be switched on under Settings > General > Keyboard shortcuts on. One can also create custom shortcuts to make the experience more personalized and accessible.

Some universal keyboard shortcuts are:

  • Compose (c)
  • Reply (r)
  • Reply all (a)
  • Forward (f)

Find all the keyboard shortcuts here.

11. Two-factor authentication

gmail two-factor authentication

Security is a significant concern in today’s digital age. The rise in cases related to cyber-crime, identity theft, online fraud, etc. is increasing the need for better and secure systems. Gmail has a two-factor authentication sign-in procedure just for this reason.

Even after having a secure and robust password, users can add a second layer of safety. The second authentication method is a verification code sent to the user’s mobile phone via a text, call, or app, whenever they log in. This way, it will be easier to discover unauthorized logins into the account.

12. Responding to emails with the preview panel

enable gmail preview panel feature

Outlook users are familiar with a user-friendly panel view. This panel view has a feature that shows the inbox on the left side of the screen and an email preview on the right.

With the help of this feature, users can multitask and go navigate through emails with ease. Moreover, they can also respond to an email without even opening it.

To apply this feature, all you need to do is go to Settings> Advanced> enable Preview pane. With this, it becomes easier for the user to assimilate all the information in the inbox.

13. Create quick emails with templates

gmail quick email templates

Sometimes it gets annoying to type the same answer again and again. One can copy the response and save it in their PC, but it is an unnecessary step. Gmail has a trick to avoid typing or copy-pasting the same answer multiple times.

This trick is called Templates responses. Using this feature, the user can write an email and save it for future use. Templates can be used multiple times; thus, helping save time and effort.

To enable canned responses, go to Settings > Advanced > Enable “Templates”> Save Changes.

After enabling, these responses can be accessed while creating an email by choosing More Options > Templates> Save Draft a Template > Save as new template > Save.

14. Spell check your email

gmail auto correction

Earlier, to spell check, either people had to use a third-party app or write the email somewhere else and paste it in the compose menu. This was not an efficient way and resulted in a lot of unprofessional emails.

Now, there is an in-built grammar and spell check provided by Gmail, which can be enabled in the options. This way, you can ensure that you send adequately formatted and good grammar emails.

15. Set auto-response on Vacation

gmail on Vacation auto-response

Sometimes users are not able to respond to emails because they are either on vacation or somewhere without internet service. This can cause a lot of issues, especially in the professional field.

Gmail here can help the user by a feature called vacation auto-responder. With this feature enabled, you can send a pre-written reply to emails without the need to access the internet.

This feature is enabled from Settings > General > Vacation auto-responder. After that, write an email reply and save the changes.

This auto-response also works when you are out of the office. The sender will be notified that you are out of the office before even hitting the “send button”.

To enable this feature, go to Google CalendarSettings > General > Working hours. Finally, you can mention your working hours per week.

16. Woking while accessing multiple accounts at once

multiple gmail account

Gmail provides you with the option to have multiple accounts open in multiple tabs at the same time. This will help the user to work from more than one account at the same time.

This trick can be accessed from the top right corner of the screen. When you select the ID icon, a drop-down window with the option add account will appear. When you sign in to a second account, it will be opened in a new tab.

17. Integration with Evernote, Dropbox, etc

Gmail is an emailing service compatible with almost every platform and browser. This also means that a lot of external applications can get integrated to work with Gmail. These applications are called IFTTT(If this then that).

These have popular software that can be synced with your Gmail to give you a better user-friendly experience. Some features and functionalities of the IFTTT are:

  • Creating Notes and To-Do lists
  • Saving emails to Evernote or spreadsheets
  • Storing attachments at Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, etc

18. Block or mute any bothering user or ID

Block or mute gmail user

Getting a lot of unwanted emails from a particular ID or user can be extremely bothersome. Gmail has a feature that can either mute or block any incoming email from these accounts in the future.

To mute, just open any of the emails sent by the particular user > select Mute. To block, the same procedure is to be followed, and instead of selecting mute, select the drop-down window icon > Block “User name”.

19. Schedule a mail

gmail schedule a mail

If the user wants to send an email at a particular time, Gmail’s trick – known as schedule send – makes that possible. For this, you just need to select the recipient of the email schedule a time, and it will be sent.

The process of scheduling an email is simple, and you need to click on Options > Select the drop-down menu > Scheduled Sent > Select the date and time.

20. Starring emails with different colors

email star color in gmail

To mark a vital email, the user usually stars it, right? This starring is represented in the form of a yellow star next to the email. However, Gmail has a hidden feature that can help you by changing the color of these stars.

This is done to rank essential emails. This adds another layer of organization for email management. To activate this feature, you need to go to Setting > General > Stars.

Out of 12 colors and a few symbols, the user can select the order at which emails are arranged. The number of taps determines the star color. The color will change with each tap, for example, the first tap for yellow, second for blue, third for red, and so on.

21. Report abuse

The internet is filled with spammers and unsolicited emails. These emails can contain inappropriate content or phishing material. And, it can turn out to be dangerous as these could be fraud emails sent to trick people.

The user can report these as spam to let Gmail know that a particular ID is spreading inappropriate content. This is done by opening the email received > Selecting Options > Report Spam.

22. Google Translate in Gmail

translate mail in gmail

A user can receive emails in a foreign language that he or she might not be accustomed to. This can become a real inconvenience to read and reply, especially if it is an important email.

Thanks to Gmail, you can now use Google Translate by opening the email > Options > Translate message. A tab will open identifying the language and asking the user what language they should translate the email in.

23. Synchronization with Google Calendar and Tasks

Gmail has access to a lot of other services that are provided by Google. The assimilation of these services makes working on Gmail extremely efficient. Some of the tools are Google calendar and Tasks.

These tools can help the user become more organized with their daily routine. You can add emails about an upcoming event to your calendar and add tasks and lists about any email directly with the help of this integration.

Takeaway

Using and mastering these features and tips will make you an email ninja. This will help you boost your productivity and increase the efficiency of your emails. Hence, instead of using Gmail just for sending and receiving mail, implement these to make your Gmail a personalized work-station. Also, save 20% on custom business email with an exclusive G Suite using promo code.

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