Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Best Gmail Productivity Tips

For the user of Gmail and Firefox, here are the two best tips to get email under control.

Keep most mailing list emails out of your inbox, one of the best way to handle emails is to keep most of the mails out of your inbox.It is common that we usually subscribe to bunch of mailists and end up with a lot of emails,but by adding filters like “If the email is to some-mailinglist, skip the inbox.” we can reduce the inbox load.

After finishing the first tip, its not a surprise that, you still end up with a lot of emails,fortunately the Firefox addon Better Gmail provides the way to prioritize the emails.Here’s how:

  1. Install Firefox and Better Gmail addon.
  2. Go to Tools Menu of the browser and select the option Better Gmail.After that select the “Saved Searches” option in the tab “Sidebar”
  3. Go into Gmail and you’ll see a new sidebar with several example searches.
  4. To run a saved search, just click on the search you want to run in the sidebar. Click on “Edit Searches” and add a new search.

Also, it is very easy to add a new search.Imagine that you get forward mails from your ex-collegues from some abccompany.com with names siva, raju and shyam.This search would find emails from any of those people that are still in your inbox and that are directly sent to you:

How do you add a new search? It’s easy. Imagine that you work at abccompany.com and you work with a team of three people: Alice, Bob, and Carol. This search would find emails from any of those people that are still in your inbox and that are directly to you:

to:me label:inbox AND from:(siva|raju|shyam)@abccompany.com

So let’s click on “Edit Searches” in the sidebar and add this new search. Here’s what you’ll see:

Under the text “Create a new persistent search” fill in the “Label” field with something like “My Ex-Collegues” and in the “Query” field, add a query like the one I mentioned, then click “Save Changes.”

Now when you’re facing a bunch of email in your Gmail inbox, you can click on the “My Ex- Collegues” link and you’ll see the important emails that you don’t want to miss. You can add quite a lot of people, too.

There are all sorts of other tricks you can do with labels and persistent searches. You could make a persistent search for different groups of people at work, or a search for email from your family.