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Gmail: What You Don’t Know That You Don’t Know

By Laura Donovan | Small Business

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If you think Google wants to rule the digital world, you are probably right. But some of their free services, like Google Mail, are exactly what a busy business person needs.  Here are a few things you may not know about Google Mail:

Did you know…That Gmail is a free email client that provides many tools that make organizing your messages quick and easy?

Did you know…That you can use Gmail to access mail from all of your email addresses?  For example, with the right settings, your you@yourdomain.com email can be sent to the Gmail interface?

And did you know … That there is a new feature that allows you to customize your inbox?

In May Google rolled out a feature that organizes email into customizable categories that allow you to see what’s new at a glance and decide which messages you want to read.  Using this feature, you will see up to four cetagories across the top of your email page.  Each will contain a specific types of message. You can choose which tabs you wish to use and even customize which messages appear under the tabs.

The available categories are:

Primary: This tab contains email from “real” people: Email from clients, friends and colleagues.

Social: Notifications and messages from social sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ will be found here.

Promotions and offers:  Newsletters, Blog posts and other commercial messages will filter to this tab.

Updates:  Updates, Bills and receipts are here.  Things like bank statements and invoices will find their way to this tab.

If you feel that certain messages belong in a different category, just drag them to the tab at the top to move them to the correct category.

Your Google mail page will be display the number of new messages in each category.

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(To set up this feature, go to Settings [gear icon] and click on Inbox or Configure Inbox and select the tabs you would like to use.)

This new feature goes nicely with the other organizing features in this mail system, including your ability to archive messages (keeping them out of your inbox, but still available) and to add messages to subject folders.  (A great way “file” email from customers or other frequent senders.)

Finally, with Googles new Mail app, you can organize the inbox on your mobile devices.  Primary email (email from real people) will be shown as the default, making checking email on these devices much  easier and more efficient.

To set up the Category view on your computer,  go to Settings [gear icon] and click on Inbox or Configure Inbox and select the tabs you would like to use.)

To get a free account or to find out more about these and other features, go to Google’s Mail Help page.

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