How to Move Emails from Promotions to Primary

Sometimes messages are sent to the Promotions category by mistake, meaning important responses or information can get lost. By the end of this article, you will learn how to move emails from Promotions to Primary in Gmail.

What's the Difference Between Promotions and Primary?

Your Promotions tab is where any promotional emails will go. You won't get a notification for these emails, hence why messages can get lost and important messages go unnoticed.

The types of messages you'll find in this tab are shopping offers and deals, spam, and emails that were found promotional ones by mistake.

The Promotions tab is one of the Gmail categories, you'll also find a Social tab under the categories too. The Primary category contains messages from people you know (and emails that don't appear in other tabs).

Throughout the rest of this article, you will learn how to move emails from Promotions to Primary and all the ways Clean Email can support your email organisation further.

How to Move an Email from Promotions to Primary

Fortunately, it's easy to manage messages within Gmail and move messages from one category to another. Especially, when you're waiting to hear back about a job or get a confirmation email.

1. Drag and Drop

One of the quickest and easiest ways to move emails from Promotions to Primary is to drag and drop the message.

  1. Find the email within the Promotions tab.
  2. Hover over the message and drag it to the Primary inbox.

💡 Note: this can only be done on a desktop!

Any future emails from this sender should now always appear in the Primary inbox and not in Promotions.

Once these messages begin to appear in the Primary inbox, be sure to open them. Every time you open the message it helps Google understand what you want.

2. Add Emails to Contacts

Another easy way to avoid important emails ending up in the wrong tab is to add addresses to your contacts on your mobile.

  1. Find an email within the Promotions tab and open it.
  2. Hover over the sender’s name or profile and click More info.
  3. Click the Add to contact symbol. It looks like a person with a + sign.
  4. Add the sender to your contacts and click Confirm.

Now, any messages you receive from people in your contact list should automatically appear in your Primary folder.

3. Create a Filter

One of Gmail's great tools is to create a filter. This enables you to automatically move emails wherever you want.

Here's how to move email from Promotions to Primary by creating a filter.

  1. Find an email in the Promotions tab and open it.
  2. Click the three dots at the top → choose to filter messages like this.
  3. Check the sender’s name and address are correct and click Create a filter.
  4. Check the Never send to spam box and check Categorise as.
  5. Now click Primary from the options given.
  6. Click the Create a filter button.

Every message from this sender will now always land in your primary mailbox.

You can create filters for anything and it's such a great way to organize Gmail!

4. Disable Promotions

By disabling this tab, all messages will be sent to Primary. In this case, you will want to set up filters anyway to avoid your main inbox becoming cluttered.

  1. Click the Settings icon next to your profile picture.
  2. Now click to See all settings.
  3. Find the Inbox section.
  4. Uncheck the Promotions box (and anything else).
  5. Scroll and click Save.

You can go back into Settings and make any changes if you find this system doesn’t work.

Learn more about how to delete all promotions in Gmail.

5. Use the “Not Promotions” Button

Just like the mark as spam, or not spam button, there's also a Not promotions button.

By using this you will help Google understand which emails should land in which tab.

  1. Click Categories in the sidebar.
  2. Now click Promotions.
  3. Find an email you want to mark as not a promotion and open it.
  4. Click the Not Promotions button in the top left.

How to Move Emails from Promotions to Primary in Gmail App

Here's how to move emails from Promotions to Primary in the Gmail app on your iPhone and Android.

  1. Tap Promotions in Gmail app.
  2. Open the email you want to move.
  3. Tap the three dots.
  4. Tap Move to.
  5. Choose Primary and you’re done!

Filter Emails With Clean Email

Clean Email will help you create an organized and clean Gmail inbox. Without the use of Gmail categories, you can create filters and automated email rules to manage your mail just how you like.

Clean Gmail inbox with Clean EmailClean Gmail inbox with Clean Email

All your messages will be in the right place, you'll have no more spam or unwanted newsletters, you can block senders with one click, and you will spend less time sorting emails daily.

Block senders with Clean EmailBlock senders with Clean Email

Our Smart Views feature allows you to see emails bundled together due to their metadata (headers, date, size, etc.). For example, all emails older than 1 year, social emails, and bounce notifications can all be easily viewed with Smart Views. Just click one and manage messages from there.

Think of Smart Views like Gmail labelsThink of Smart Views like Gmail labels

Think of Smart Views like Gmail labels. However, you don’t need to move any of them, they're all still within your mailbox.

To maintain mailbox sanity, it’s a good idea to get on top of your email management game. Once you are organised, your mailbox is decluttered and you're feeling less stressed, you can be so much more productive.

Clean Email cares about your Privacy and Security. We never sell or share user personal data with any third parties.

Wondering to get more Gmail tips? Check out our other guides on how to achieve Gmail Inbox Zero and how the Gmail search works.


Move Emails from Promotions to Primary - FAQs

Why are promotions showing up in primary Gmail?

You may have previously told Gmail emails like these are not promotional. Or Gmail hasn’t identified these messages as promotional ones.

How do I stop emails from going to promotions?

To stop emails going to Promotions you can do one of the following: use the Not Promotions button, create a filter, remove the Promotions tab, or add the sender to your contacts.

How do you move emails from promotions to primary in the Gmail app on iPhone?

Open the email and click the three dots. Now chose to Move to and select Primary.

How do I stop receiving promotional emails?

You can always block or mark promotional emails as spam to stop receiving them.
You may also want to turn off notifications for online shopping websites or unsubscribe from them entirely.

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