What Are Archived Emails?
Older email software, most notably Microsoft Outlook, organize messages into folders. The problem with this approach is that one message can belong only to one folder. Let’s say you want to place all work-related emails into a folder called “Work,” but you also want to organize your emails based on their importance.
With a folder-based email organization system, you can either place a message into a folder called Work or into a folder called Important, but the message can’t be in both folders at the same time. To overcome the limitations of folder-based email organization systems, Gmail uses a label-based system.
Essentially, Gmail lets you attach as many labels to messages as you want. You can easily tell Gmail to display all emails with a certain label or labels, which is how labels make inbox management much easier.
Where Do Archived Emails Go in Gmail?
Archived emails are just ordinary messages with the label “archive” attached to them while the “inbox” label is removed. Such messages are not deleted or otherwise made inaccessible. In fact, they are still stored alongside all other messages and can be retrieved in just a few seconds because Gmail makes them fully searchable.
However, Gmail doesn't display the archive label alongside other labels, which is a common source of confusion even among more experienced Gmail users. To view archived emails in Gmail, you need to select the All Mail label instead and manually find archived Gmail messages by looking at their subject lines, delivery date, and sender information.
How to Find Archived Emails in Gmail?
By default, Gmail creates a catch-all label called “All Mail.” When you click on this label, it instantly displays all email messages that are present in your inbox, including archived messages.
- Enter your Google email address and password and tap Sign In if you aren't logged in already.
- Tap the hamburger menu in the top-left corner of the screen to open a pop-out menu with labels.
- If you’re on desktop, you need to click More/Less near the bottom of the inbox options tree to reveal the “All Mail” label.
- Select the “All Mail” label toward the bottom of the screen.
This method works best if you don’t have too many messages in your inbox. If you do, we suggest you use the following method on how to find archived emails in Gmail instead.
- Go to the search bar.
- Type “has:nouserlabels -in:Sent -in:Chat -in:Draft -in:Inbox”.
The last method how to find archived emails in Gmail involved the use of the search bar again.
- Go to the search bar.
- Type one or two words that you know appears in the email you want and hit enter.
- The more words you enter, the fewer results you will get, so it’s always better to start with as few words as possible and expand them to narrow down the results.
- Gmail will instantly display all messages that contain the word/s.
How to Retrieve Archived Emails in Gmail?
Many people don’t know where to find archived emails in Gmail because they don’t understand how Gmail organizes email messages, and even more, people don’t know how to access archived emails in Gmail and retrieve them. You already know how to access archived emails in Gmail, so simply use any of the three methods described in the previous chapter of this article to locate the email message that you would like to unarchive.
If you want to retrieve Gmail archived emails, this is what you need to do:
- Go to: https://mail.google.com/
- Log in to your account.
- Find the archived message. You can either search for the message using the search bar or look for it in the All Mail label.
- Check the box next to the message. Or tap and hold the message if you’re using the Gmail app.
- Click the Move to Inbox option at the top.
This will remove the “Archive” label and you will be able to find the email message inside your inbox.
How to find archived emails in Gmail on Android?
The Android version of the Gmail app gives you two options for finding and viewing archived Gmail emails.
- Tap the search bar and enter the sender's email address or any relevant keyword.
- Go through the search results and look for archived emails.
Keep in mind that the Gmail app on Android lists emails by date, with the newest emails displayed first. If you're looking for a Gmail archived mail from a long time ago, you might have to do quite a lot of scrolling down to find it.
- Tap the hamburger menu in the top left corner.
- Select the All Mail label.
- Go through all email messages with the All Mail label and look for archived emails.
Unfortunately, it's not possible to display only archived emails and nothing else.
How Clean Email Archives Emails Automatically?
Email archiving is great because it allows you to clean up your inbox without deleting any email messages. Since all Gmail users get 15 GB of data per account for free, it simply doesn’t make much sense to delete emails anymore. You never know when a message will be useful—even if it seems completely useless at the moment.
Ideally, you want to archive emails automatically, but Gmail doesn’t have this feature. That’s why we recommend Clean Email, an online bulk email cleaner with intelligent filters that sift through your inbox for you, grouping emails into easy-to-manage bundles and automatically applying various actions, such as archiving emails.
Apart from Gmail, Clean Email works with all other major email services, and all you need to do to get started with it is log in with your email address and password. To automatically archive emails using Clean Email, you simply choose to apply an action to all matching emails in the future with a single click. For example, you can automatically archive all social media notifications because you most likely don’t read them anyway.
To archive Gmail emails using Clean Email app:
- Go to: https://app.clean.email
- Log in to your mailbox account.
- Select the Inbox option from the left pane and choose the group of emails you want to archive.
- Click the archive button to archive all email messages in one go.
- Confirm your choice by clicking the Archive button.
When archiving Gmail emails using Clean Email, you can choose to automatically archive all future emails matching the same criteria, and we highly recommend you use this option to simplify your email management.
Clean Email is also available as an Android and iOS app, and its fantastic user rating speaks for itself. If you want to take your email management to the next level without much effort, give Clean Email a try and discover how it can make your life easier.
In this article, we’ve explained how to find archived emails in Gmail apps and how Clean Email, an online bulk email cleaner with intelligent filters, can archive emails automatically, among many other useful things. Once you discover the power of email archiving, we’re sure you won’t be able to imagine going back to older email organization systems.
How to Find Archived Emails in Gmail - FAQs
Where do archived emails go in Gmail?
When you open an email message in Gmail and click the archive button, the message is immediately moved from your inbox to a label called All Mail, where it stays until you either manually move it back to your inbox or receive a reply to it.
How do I find archived emails in Gmail app?
Just like when using the web version of Gmail, there are two ways to find archived Gmail messages in the Gmail app:
1. Search for a specific message using the Gmail search bar.
2. Click the hamburger menu icon to reveal labels and click the All Mail label.
Unfortunately, there’s no “archived” label that would allow you to view archived Gmail messages and no other emails with a single click, and Gmail doesn’t seem to be interested in its implementation.
How to find archived emails in Gmail using Clean Email app?
Moving a single email message to the Gmail archive folder is easy enough, but archiving hundreds—let alone thousands—of emails can be extremely tedious. To make this process more efficiently and less time consuming, you can use Clean Email, which is a bulk email organizer that allows you to organize multiple emails with a single click. In order to find archived emails in Clean Email, you just need to click “Archived Emails” filter among the “Smart Views” labels on the left sidebar.
How to search archived emails in Gmail?
There are two ways how to find archived Gmail messages:
1. Use the Gmail search bar to search archived messages by email, date, size, or other keyword.
2. View email messages with the All Mail label to display every single email in your Gmail account, including archived emails.
Curiously, archived email messages in Gmail are not labeled accordingly, which means that you won’t be able to find any archive label in the left pane.
How to Retrieve Archived Emails in Gmail?
It’s important to remember that archived emails in Gmail are just regular emails with the label “archive” attached to them, so retrieving them is a matter of removing the “archive” label. Open the archived message and choose Move to Inbox from the toolbar. This will remove the “Archive” label and, you’ve guessed it, move the message to inbox.