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I have such a love-hate relationship with my email inbox, guys. I love to subscribe to various newsletters to stay up to date, but when I get flooded with them all day every day, I get so overwhelmed. Not to mention, this large influx of email subscriptions masks all the important ones I should be seeing asap!
At one point, taking care of my email took up all of my time after work to sort through. Which meant zero time for actual blogging and creating content!
So yeah, something had to change. ASAP.
Email organization clearly had not been a top priority but once I realized it was controlling most of my time to sort through, I came up with some solutions to managing my email inbox. And guess what?? Email organization doesn’t have to take you much time either! These email management tips and tricks are bound to save you loads of time- not to mention stress! 🙂
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Scroll down to the bottom of this post to watch the YouTube video that goes along with this post! If ya want more vids, you can find more on my YouTube channel 🙂
1. Unsubscribe to anything you never open
When I started working on getting my email inbox in order, the first thing I did was hit unsubscribe. If there were emails from senders that I regularly never open, there must be a reason- I didn’t need or want that content.
When I went through my inbox with the intent to unsubscribe, there were so many unopened emails from the same senders! Chances are, I gave my email while I was at a store when they asked at checkout.
Reminder: When I’m in a store and they ask for my email, I always say “no thank you” or something about how I don’t want to give that info. Unless you’re shopping online, the store really does not need that info and they’re just going to send you promotions that flood your inbox.
Removing unwanted content from even entering your sacred email inbox will for sure help you manage your inbox better. I used to use the Unroll Me app to mass unsubscribe from emails…until I heard that it actually doesn’t unsubscribe and just “junks” the subscriptions. I also found out that they sell user data to other companies. Now, I just unsubscribe manually.
2. Turn off email notifications
If you can, turn off your email notifications. This will prevent you from getting distracted throughout the day and prevent you from being productive on your other tasks. I’m the type of person that LOVES getting emails from people that I need to reply to, so if I see a notification pop-up in the middle of something else, I instantly can only think about that email. The solution? Prevent those distractions!
3. Plan to only check your email at certain times in the day
Piggy-backing off of tip 2: when you turn off your email notifications, plan to only check your email inbox at certain times of the day. Some people take it to the extreme and say to only check your inbox 1x a day, but I don’t think that’s necessary.
However many times you think you need to check your emails throughout the day, just set a specific time to hold yourself accountable. When you have a set email schedule, you can avoid randomly checking your email every other minute for some new update. And we all know what happens when you’re bouncing back and forth between tasks like that: nothing gets done.
4. Reply as soon as you open
One thing I have been trying to do to keep my email inbox organized and under control is responding as soon as I open the email. I’m the type of person that if I don’t respond when the email is open, I forget about it after I close it.
Then I end up waiting for an email from the other person forever…when really I hadn’t responded yet!
So in order to respect the other person’s time and my email inbox sanity, I make sure I follow this tip to a T. Even if I don’t have an answer just this second, I typically send an email saying something about following up shortly. Then I set a reminder to follow up so I don’t forget!
Related Post: Why You Need to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
5. Set up canned responses
Canned email responses in gmail are such a great way to cute down on time spent writing the same type of email over and over. This is perfect for frequently asked questions, email pitches, or anything else you send a lot through email.
6. Employ an email organization and management system, like Sanebox
Sanebox is such a cool system to manage your email inbox. When I first set up the trial to test it out, I was instantly amazed and knew I needed to share this system with you guys! Sanebox is an email management system that uses algorithms (yes…algorithms- but I like this kind!) to sort through your inbox for you.
To organize your email inbox, Sanebox uses folders within the email software to sort your emails. I was a little skeptical at first because I thought I would lose all control and power over my inbox if I had a software managing it. However, Sanebox works by you training it, so if you want something in your main inbox, but it went to the “SaneLater” folder (a folder where lower priority emails get sent to), you can move that email and it will remember that action. So next time when that sender emails you, it goes right to your inbox! And vice versa…if a sender lands in your inbox, but you would rather that go to a different folder, just move it and Sanebox will remember! You also get regular “SaneDigest” emails that allows you to see your email activity and train any new senders that have sent you an email recently.
Have you ever gone through your spam folder only to find an email from someone important? That’s happened to me before and I was horrified! Before this happened I rarely checked my spam and learned that those emails were deleted after 30 days. I wonder what other emails I missed! While Sanebox monitors your inbox, it also keeps an eye on your spam folder. Whenever an email lands in your spam folder that Sanebox doesn’t think should be there, it moves the email to a different folder to save it for you. Kinda cool, huh?!
Setting up Sanebox to organize my email inbox wasn’t difficult at all. All I had to do was sign up for an account and give approval for Sanebox to organize and sort through my emails. Once it was done, I instantly had less emails in my inbox (SCORE!) and received an email summarizing the activity. Depending on how many emails you receive and how you want to organize your emails, it may take a little while to set up, but nothing compared to the time you’ll save each week not sorting through all those emails.
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Click the video below to watch me chat about email organization and fun hacks!
So what are you waiting for?! Go get that email inbox under control! 🙂