Email is a valuable tool, and yet it can often be a frustration for professionals all over the world. If your inbox looks more like “Inbox 5,000” than “Inbox Zero,” there is hope (and no, it doesn’t require declaring email bankruptcy). Gmail tips will equip you to effectively and efficiently manage your email. 

9 Gmail Tips That Will Help You Crush Efficiency

#1 – Create an Email Signature

You probably close out emails with a complimentary close like “Sincerely,” or “Regards,” followed by your name. Instead of typing that every time you write an email, an easy Gmail tip is to create an email signature that will automatically be placed at the end of each message.

To create an email signature, go to Settings, then General. Scroll down to the Signature section. Here, you can create multiple email signatures. These can include links and even images. Use this to include a link to the church website, church social media channels, event registration webpages, and more.

#2 – Use Multiple Email Addresses from a Single Gmail Login

If you’re responsible for managing several email addresses for the church such as a “contact us” or “media” email, you can handle those within a single Gmail login.

First, you’ll need to add each email address under Settings. Next, you can select the default address to use for sending messages. When you compose a new email, check the “From” address to ensure you’re sending the message from the appropriate address for that message.

Check out: The Ultimate Church Tech Survival Guide

#3 – Create Templates

Do you tend to get the same questions over and over? If so, a prewritten message you tweak as needed could save you hours every month. Gmail provides easy-to-follow instructions on how to create email templates.

Crush efficiency with this Gmail tip: prewrite messages that can be used to respond to frequently asked questions. Create templates and then tweak your copy as needed. Click To Tweet

#4 – Automate the Sorting Process

Need help organizing your email? Another Gmail tip is to create a few folders for different types of correspondence. For example, you might want to have Gmail automatically put any messages from a particular vendor into a folder with that company’s name. Check out these steps to create labels and set up automated sorting.

#5 – Deal with Unread Emails

If you have lots of unread emails and have a few minutes to process messages, you want all the unread stuff at the top. To do that, go to Settings and scroll down to “Inbox Type.” Select “Unread first.” Once you’ve processed those emails, you can go back to Settings and return your inbox type to the default if you’d prefer.

#6 – Schedule Emails

If you’re ready to write an email but don’t want to send it right now, you can schedule that message to send at a later time. Once you’ve drafted the message, click on the down arrow next to “Send.” Select “Schedule send,” then pick the date and time for Gmail to send that message. This comes in handy if you’re working odd hours but don’t want to bother others late at night. 

#7 – Enable the Reading Pane

If you’d like to preview the text of an email, you can use the Gmail Reading Pane. This is an easy Gmail tip to implement! Go to Settings, then click on Inbox. Scroll down to “Reading Pane” and click to enable it.

Read more: Top 5 Email Automation Sequences Your Church Should Set Up

#8 – Go on Vacation

Hey, that got your attention, right?!

Let’s say you’re finally heading off on a week-long beach vacation. Email is the last thing you want to deal with while enjoying the sun and sand. However, you also don’t want to leave anyone high and dry who might email you that week.

To set up your vacation message, go to Settings, then General. Scroll down until you find the Vacation Responder section. Turn that on, designate the First day and Last day, then write your “out of office” message. Let people know that you’ll respond to emails once you return and give them someone to contact who’s in the office that week and can be your backup. Feel free to leave out your amazing vacay plans unless you want everyone else to feel jealous (and need to repent).

#9 – Use Advanced Searches

You know someone sent you a message with an important attachment about the outreach event next week, but you can’t remember who or when. A simple search for the name of the outreach might pull up too many emails. To narrow down the list, click on the down arrow to the right of the “Search mail” field.   In the “Has the words” field, enter the name of the event. Then, check the “Has attachment” box and click “Search.” Eureka! Problem solved.

Use these Gmail tips to give you a shot at “Inbox Zero” or at least a sense that you aren’t drowning in unread messages. Gmail includes many features to make email more productive. Let’s take advantage of these options and use email more effectively.

What Gmail tips have you found helpful? Leave a comment below and share your efficiency tricks!