10 Tips to Help You Organize Your Inbox Email Messages
Is your email inbox cluttered with messages that you haven't had the time to read? Do you dread opening your inbox because the amount of mail is overwhelming?
When you want to keep your inbox from getting cluttered and becoming unusable, learn how to organize your email inbox. It's quick and easy to find the messages you need when your email inbox is organized. And it's even easier to get rid of the messages you don't need.
The goal of organizing your email inbox is to achieve Inbox Zero. Inbox Zero is when your inbox is completely empty, and your mail is dealt with as soon as it comes in. But how do you achieve this goal of Inbox Zero?
We collected the 10 best ways to organize email messages and achieve a clutter-free inbox. As a bonus, we also included information on Clean Email, an email organizer that groups inbox emails into easy-to-review bundles.
With the right strategy, diligent management of your emails, and an inbox organizer like Clean Email, you can become more proficient at your job, keep track of important events, and stay up to date with the latest news. Plus, your inbox will never contain more than a day's worth of emails.
1. Organize Your Inbox Regularly and Often
Nobody enjoys being disturbed when working on a difficult task. Alerts and notifications from incoming emails can become annoying quickly, which is why many people turn them off and ignore new emails. That's a sensible thing to do, but don't ignore those unread emails for too long because they can accumulate and become unmanageable.
The best approach is to schedule blocks of time during the day for reading and responding to emails. The blocks don't need to be long—10 or 15 minutes is usually enough. What matters most is that you don’t skip them.
Avoid spending too much time on individual emails. Archive emails that don't require a response, respond to emails that need it, and snooze emails that you don't know how to respond to at the moment.
How to organize Gmail
Knowing how to organize Gmail can make your life simpler, and you can choose from several methods to reduce the clutter in your inbox.
To help you quickly identify important messages and emails that you need to respond to, use labels. Using multiple Gmail accounts can help you separate your work emails from your personal emails. And archiving messages you want to keep for future reference can also help.
How to organize email in Outlook
Outlook contains several tools that can help you manage your inbox. When you want to handle all messages from a specified sender, use Sweep. Sweep is a quick way to create a rule that sends messages from a sender to a folder you specify. In addition to rules, you can use folders and categories.
These are just a few ways for how to organize email in Outlook. We have more ideas for you.
How to organize iCloud emails
One benefit you'll find when you organize iCloud emails is that you'll save storage space and have more room for your files, videos, and music. There are several ways to manage your iCloud inbox. Two simple methods are to mass delete emails and block unwanted emails.
How to organize Yahoo Mail
The best way to organize Yahoo Mail is to create folders, for example, one folder for each of your volunteer activities or school projects. Then, set up filters to send messages to the appropriate folder.
2. Use Labels and Folders
Even if you have an unlimited inbox, you should delete as many inbox email messages as possible. The fewer emails there are in your inbox, the easier it is to find a specific message when you need it. But what about the inbox emails you can't delete? Simple: learn how to organize mail using folders and labels.
Many mail clients use folders, which are like drawers, where you store emails so that they don't clutter your inbox. You can create several folders and dedicate each to specific emails, such as work-related emails, social media notifications, or emails from friends and family. Your inbox is your main folder with all your inbox emails.
Gmail is different. It doesn't use folders like other mail clients. Instead, Gmail uses labels to categorize email messages. Labels are similar to folders in that you'll find each label name in Gmail's folder navigation panel. When you select a label, you'll see all the emails with that label.
Labels are different from folders in that labels in Gmail work like post-it notes. When you assign labels to inbox emails, the emails don't actually move. That's why a single message can have many labels but be present only in one folder.
Once you know how to create folders in Gmail, you can label your messages and organize email by category.
3. Create Multiple Email Accounts
There are many excellent free email services to choose from these days, so there's no reason to use a single mail account for both personal and work emails. Having multiple accounts (for example, one account for personal emails, another account for work emails, and a third account for online services) makes it easier to organize email messages.
You might also consider using disposable email accounts. A disposable email is an extra measure of security when signing up for services you may not use in the future or when filling out online subscription forms to access additional content. Make sure you don't use a disposable email account for anything important.
4. Rule Them All
One thing is guaranteed when it comes to inbox email messages: new ones keep coming and coming. While you can't stop all incoming messages, you can use rules. Rules help you identify emails by sender, subject line, or recipient to automatically place them in the correct folder, assign them the proper labels, or delete them.
Email rules are also called filters, and many popular email services support them out of the box. While each service handles this task differently, learning how to filter emails in your Gmail, Outlook, or Yahoo account can reduce the amount of time you spend managing your inbox.
The only problem with email rules is that they can be challenging to set up, which is where Clean Email comes in. The app shows all email senders under the Senders tab and you can automate email tasks easily from there. The app also has pre-set filters (called Smart Folders) combining your emails based on the similarities they share, and you can easily create an automated rule to a set of emails with different senders to save you time and effort.
5. Archive Emails to Keep Your Inbox Clean
Today, email users have more options for how to organize email inbox than a decade ago. Most popular service providers and clients support archiving.
What does it mean to archive an email message? Archiving helps keep your inbox clean by hiding unimportant emails that you're not ready to delete.
For example, imagine you receive an assignment from your boss. After you complete the task, you could delete the original message. However, you wouldn’t be able to read the message in the future. By archiving the message, you make it disappear from your inbox to reduce the clutter, and you can come back to the message later if you need to.
From time to time, clean up your archived messages to free up storage space. You can either archive messages manually or configure an automatic inbox cleaner to delete messages older than 30 days.
6. Deep Clean Your Inbox from Time to Time
There's no best way to organize email inbox. If you want a clutter-free inbox, practice the email organization tips described in this article regularly, day after day. However, some unwanted or unnecessary emails will still end up in your inbox, and you should address them before they pile up and prevent you from being productive.
That’s why we recommend you deep clean your inbox occasionally. Think of inbox deep cleaning as spring cleaning for your digital life. The goal is to review your email organization strategy and check as many messages that haven't been properly organized as possible.
Since deep cleaning is a time-consuming activity, don’t do it in a hurry because you would need to do it again soon.
7. Organize Emails Using Stars and Flags
Some mail clients let you star and flag emails. Consider taking advantage of this feature as much as possible because it allows you to visually distinguish emails you want to look at later.
Here’s how to star a message in Gmail:
- Open your Gmail inbox.
- Go to the left of the message, then click the star icon.
To flag a message in Outlook.com:
- Log in to your Outlook inbox.
- Hover the mouse over the message you want to flag and click the flag icon.
Some mail clients let users set up multiple stars and flags, allowing them to differentiate emails based on specified criteria, for example, low, medium, or high urgency.
Don't get carried away with flagging and starring messages. When most of your messages are flagged or a large number have multiple stars, it can be challenging to determine which messages are important. This abundance of flags and stars is only one of the email organization mistakes to avoid.
8. Snooze Emails for Later
Sometimes, messages arrive at the wrong time. When that happens, you have two options:
- Option A: You can stop what you're doing and deal with the message.
- Option B: You can ignore the message and come back to it later.
If you choose Option A, you risk losing track of the original activity, which can cause your productivity to plummet. If you choose Option B, you risk making the sender wait for a response too long or forgetting about the message altogether.
Fortunately, there's also Option C: snoozing the message for later. Snoozing removes the snoozed message from your inbox temporarily and makes it re-appear later when you have time for it. These days, email snoozing is supported by most clients and services.
9. Use Canned Responses
Why waste valuable time writing the same responses over and over when you can save them and enter them with one click? Canned responses are beneficial if you use email for work-related purposes. And you can use them to save time when asking about the status of your online purchases, for example.
10. Unsubscribe from Unwanted Emails
Unwanted subscriptions are the main enemy of anyone who strives to achieve and maintain Inbox Zero. From newsletters to advertisements, they can quickly overwhelm your inbox and make it difficult to spot important messages. Marketers have learned to write newsletters and advertisements as if they were coming from a friend or acquaintance, making it more difficult to spot them and get rid of them.
When you want to bypass those situations, email management tools can help you automatically unsubscribe from emails, unwanted newsletters, advertisements, and other unwanted mailings.
Use Third-Party Apps And Services To Organize Your Email Inbox
You don't have to use the tools provided by Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, or your other mail clients to organize your email inbox. There are apps and services available that can do some of this work for you, and Clean Email is among them.
Clean Email is the best email organizer for Mac and PC. It can declutter a thousand emails and organize those messages into categories. After you set up rules in this app, it runs in the background and manages your inbox without any input from you.
Bonus: How Clean Email Can Help
Clean Email is a bulk email organizer you can use to clean your inbox of emails you don't need and keep it organized. It sorts your messages into easy-to-review bundles so that you can remove, move, label, or achieve hundreds or thousands of emails with a single click.
For applying an action to new emails from a certain sender automatically, you can create the rule right from the message you got from this sender. For example, you can automatically send all social network notifications to Trash so that you don't waste time on deleting them manually.
Additionally, the app comes with the Unsubscriber feature, which you can use to unsubscribe from unwelcome noisy marketers in bulk.
To ensure you never miss anything important, Clean Email sends you a summary of its activity. If your mail client doesn't support snoozing, use the app's Read Later feature to postpone emails you're not ready to deal with right away.
The app works with all popular mail service providers, including Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, Fastmail, AOL, iCloud, and others.
Bulk email organizers like Clean Email make it easy to keep inbox email messages organized like a pro. When it takes only a couple of seconds to delete, move, or archive hundreds and thousands of emails, achieving and maintaining Inbox Zero becomes effortless.
How to Organize Inbox Email Messages - FAQs
How to organize emails effectively?
Organizing emails effectively requires a multi-pronged approach that combines several inbox organization tips and tricks. Even then, any email organization strategy is effective only if exercised regularly and diligently, which is where many users fail.
What is the best advice for organizing email messages?
Many people interested in learning the best way to organize emails have never heard about inbox organizers like Clean Email, which can clean up a messy inbox in minutes. As such, the best advice for organizing email messages is to use a bulk mail organizer to save time and achieve Inbox Zero without much effort.
How do I organize my work email folders?
It’s a good idea to label all work-related emails accordingly and, if possible, keep them in separate folders. You can then organize these folders manually or use a bulk email organizer to remove emails quickly and efficiently from certain senders, archive old messages, and more.
How does the Clean Email app organize inbox email messages?
Clean Email is a capable inbox organizer with multiple features that you can use to clean your inbox with a few simple clicks. The app automatically groups similar messages, allowing you to manage them in bulk with a few simple clicks. It can also automatically clean emails matching specific rules to automate repetitive email management tasks, block unwanted senders, unsubscribe from newsletters, and more.
How to organize your emails using a mobile device?
With a mobile device, you can easily organize emails as they arrive, which is more efficient than allowing them to pile up in your inbox. We recommend you set up email notifications on your mobile device so that you never miss an important message. Just remember to turn them off when you need to focus or have a meeting coming up.
What is the best way to organize emails?
Bulk email cleaners, such as Clean Email, are the best way to organize emails. These cleaners organize emails automatically and make it simple to organize emails by sender, label groups of emails, and block unwanted senders. Plus, these tasks can be applied to existing and future messages.
How do I organize my personal email folders?
Organizing email into folders is similar to organizing your essential paperwork into manila folders. First, look at the types of messages you receive and note the different types of emails. Then, for each type of email, create a folder.
How do you manage thousands of emails?
The best way to manage thousands of emails is to use a bulk email organizer like Clean Email. Bulk email organizers work with your email service and keep your inbox clutter-free by moving messages to folders, deleting unneeded and unwanted messages, and grouping messages that are similar.