For millions around the world, Gmail is the preferred emailing service provider. I share this bias along with the millions of Gmail lovers. Unfortunately, being the preferred email service does not necessarily translate into it being extremely easy to use. For basic sending and receiving of emails it is straightforward, but probably using Gmail or any other emailing service for that matter for more enterprise functions could be complex.
This will be a workaround for being more productive while using this tremendously productive emailing service. Here are my tips for Gmail customization for improved productivity and in no particular order.
Tips to Customize Gmail for more Productivity
1. Read Receipt
This is the feature that allows you to know when your email has been read. If you have ever applied for a job and start getting anxious because you don’t know if your application was ever read, this fix is for you.
There are a couple of ways, but my favorite is using an extension called streak CRM.
To install it, in a Chrome or Safari browser, go to streak.com
Locate the orange button to Install Streak for Gmail
A popup will come up to confirm installation, click Add Extension
You’ll then see a notice in the top of your browser informing you that the Streak extension was successfully installed.
Once installed on your browser, head to gmail.com and click grant access on the pop up displayed. Gmail will reload and emails sent will be tracked.
To view tracked emails, on the left pane click the “all tracked email” option. This displays all the emails that have been sent out and are being tracked.
When you open one of these tracked emails, you can click the small egg-shaped symbol to the rightmost of your window to view the tracking information and know if that email has been read.
2. Setting the Undo Send
This feature can be a lifesaver. Imagine you have sent an email and realize there was an error in the body, or you somehow omitted a subject for your email. Gmail permits you to retract or undo the email for up to 30 seconds after it has been sent.
Set this up by:
Clicking on the gear icon at the right top side of your Gmail window and scroll down and select settings.
Under the general tab, locate the “Undo Send” and adjust the values to whatever length you need the undo send to be available after an email is sent. Note that the maximum is 30 Seconds.
Once you do this, when next you send an email, a message will appear by the bottom left corner with the undo send option and this message will last for the amount of time you have selected for your undo send.
3.Setting up a Signature
This is a feature that makes you stand out. With a proper signature, your skills are showcased, future employers can access your best work and it can increase your LinkedIn connections, and get people to sign up for your newsletter.
To set us a signature
In the top right, click the gear icon and Navigate to settings.
In the “Signature” section, add your signature text in the box. Additionally, you could add an image, add a link and perform some basic formatting to enhance the signature look and feel. At the bottom of the page, click Save Changes.
Customization options for Gmail are extensive and very helpful. This are about just the first I use when setting up a new Gmail account but there are a host of other customization options.