Become a Gmail Processing Machine

Hands down, email, is one of the biggest time wasters in our days. The ding here and ding there as you ar trying to get your work complete all add up. A report from The Huffington Post states, “More than 90 percent of the workers admitted they checked personal emails at work, and 87 percent looked at business emails outside of working hours.” Even more astonishing is the amount of time that goes into emails each day. From the same post, “The workers questioned in the poll estimated they spend 6.3 hours a day checking emails, with 3.2 hours devoted to work emails and 3.1 hours to personal messages.” Seriously, 6.3 hours a day!! Luckily we have a few tricks for you to decrease your email time. While we cannot magically cut your time down to zero or even in half, we can offer a few tips that together, can add up to a noticeable difference.

Gmail Auto-Archive

One problem many have is inbox overload. Even after we have checked our messages, we either need to go back into the inbox and delete them or archive them, or they will stay in our inbox adding to the clutter. While it doesn’t take a large chunk of time to go back and delete or archive a message, it can when you have hundreds of message. This is why we recommend getting familiar with the auto-archive function in Gmail. Auto-archive in Gmail allows you to archive a message on the same screen you are replying to the message. You just write your response and click on “Send+Archive”. Have a message that you would like to respond to but keep in your inbox? No worries, you still have that option as well. How To Enable Gmail Auto-Archive Gmail Settings > Show Send & Archive

Keyboard Shortcuts in Gmail

The auto-archive feature is somewhat of a shortcut, but there are many more keyboard shortcuts inside of Gmail to save you a few extra mouse clicks in your email. Gmail has all of the shortcuts listed in their help article, Keyboard Shortcuts for Gmail. Gmail has a set of shortcuts that are always turned on and an even larger list of shortcuts that you will need to enable. While the list is extensive, you will not need to know all of them. Take a look, see which shortcuts will save you time and remember those. How to Turn on Shortcuts in Gmail Gmail Settings > Keyboard shortcuts on

Unsend Email in Gmail

While not necessarily a time saver but, in the end, it could save you time in having to explain or draft a second email to follow up on a mistake in a previous email. With the un-send feature in Gmail, you can set a period that Gmail will hold an email before pushing it out to the recipient. Should you notice a misspelling or accidentally click send before you were ready, you can un-send the email and make the necessary changes prior to resending. How To Un-Send in Gmail Gmail Settings > Enable Undo Send

Google Labs

There are many additional features you can enable through Google Labs. Google Labs are features that Gmail has in the beta stages. There is one feature called Auto-Advance that we will cover but there are many other very cool features so if you have a minute, maybe one that we saved you, scroll through and see if there are any other features in Google Labs that may save you time. Don’t forget to scroll down to the very bottom and click Save Changes. It is a small button at the bottom, and if you don’t click it, it won’t add the features to your account. How To Access Google Labs Gmail Settings > Labs Tab

Gmail Auto-Advance

Now that you have scrolled through Google Labs, selected Gmail Auto-Advance, scrolled to the bottom and clicked save, you are ready to enable auto-advance. There a few ways you can set auto-advance to work:
  • Go to the next (newer) conversation – will allow you to work from the top down
  • Go to the previous (older) conversation – will allow you to work from the bottom up
  • Go back to the threadlist
Auto-advance will allow you to move through your emails without pushing you back into the inbox. Once you have it set in settings, you can work through email, reply, delete, or archive and it will automatically pop up the next message rather than going back to the inbox. Auto-advance is very nice for quickly working through emails and not having to go back and forth to the list in your inbox. To Enable Auto-Advance Settings > Select which way you would like to work through emails > Click Save


We have looked at just a few of the tools available in Gmail to help us process our email a bit faster. Each one is not a huge time-saver, but overall, together each second adds up to minutes, and hours. We would love to hear your favorite email shortcuts and time-saving tips. Head on over to our YouTube channel and leave your comments there. Also, don’t forget to scroll down and subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with all the fun here at Dotto Tech! Until next time, have fun stormin’ the castle!


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