Do you know how much of your working day is spent looking for information in your inbox?
According to McKinsey, almost 20% of employees’ time is spent searching for information. That’s the equivalent of one full day at the office.
And with office workers receiving 121 emails per day on average, it’s more than likely that much of the time is spent sifting through emails and attachments.
Luckily, email labels are Gmail’s secret weapon to fight against inbox clutter. They allow you to quickly organize your inbox, reducing the time required to track down information.
This guide will take you through the process step by step to create a neat, tidy, and well-organized inbox. It includes screenshots, how-to’s, and some insanely helpful tips.
You can use the links below to jump to a specific section or you can enjoy the full read, to make sure you’ve covered every aspect of Gmail labels.
Ready to be an inbox ninja? Let’s go.
In Gmail, you can add a tag or label to emails that are sent, received, or drafted.
Similar to folders, they are used to organize your inbox by grouping together relevant emails. But unlike email folders, you can add multiple labels to one email.
For instance, Sales teams can use email labels to organize their inbox by creating different labels such as ‘Leads,’ ‘Contacts,’ and ‘Deals.’
Project Managers, on the other hand, might add a project status such as ‘In Progress’ or ‘Complete’ to an email chain.
It’s really simple to create a new label. Any logged-in Gmail user has three options for adding a label to an email:
Depending on your use case, there are multiple ways you can add a label to an email.
You can manually add a label to an email by selecting the ‘Label As’ icon from the top.
Another option is to add a label using a filter rule. It’s quick, easy, and allows you to automate your inbox organization:
You can also easily add or remove labels from multiple emails in one go by following these easy steps:
To archive emails and keep your inbox uncluttered, you can move emails out of the inbox and into another folder or label with just a couple of clicks:
Or simply select multiple emails and drag them into a chosen label.
The above options are related to emails in your inbox; however, you can also add labels to your outgoing emails. To do so, follow these easy steps:
Gmail is great, it’s arguably the most feature-packed email provider on the market. But like most email solutions, it lacks advanced automation features such as email templates and sequences.
In order to automate your outreach, you can use Gmelius, a collaborative workspace that seamlessly integrates inside Gmail. It allows you to create, share, and send personalized email templates and automated follow-ups based on your recipients’ interactions.
To do so, first, install Gmelius and create an email template (read the full guide on creating and sharing email templates). Now, whenever you select that template in your Compose window, the label will be applied automatically.
Sequences can also be used as a more advanced automation feature. When creating an automated sequence, you can direct Gmelius to add labels at certain stages in the workflow.
All of your email templates, sequences, and conversations sync in real-time across your entire team and all of their devices, so once you receive a reply, you’ll find the email under your chosen label.
Once you’ve created a Gmail label, you can also edit the color, the name, and its visibility.
To edit the label, follow these steps:
Gmail is the most powerful email provider, however, as with all email solutions it is primarily designed for individual use.
Unfortunately, this is a serious flaw for modern teams that work collaboratively across departments, offices, locations, and timezones.
Granted, there are various hacks you can cobble together to force your email to work for team collaboration — you can forward, cc, bcc other team members, you can share the login details to one email account, or you can hook up a third-party CRM.
You guessed it. None of these are ideal solutions.
Instead, by using Gmelius’ shareable email labels, you and your team can collaborate more efficiently and effectively.
In cases where you don’t need to share your whole inbox, just specific email conversations, shared labels give you more detailed control over shared inboxes.
You can assign individual tasks and work together on email threads, avoiding duplicate conversations or missed emails.
By sharing email labels you immediately increase transparency and accountability around team emails, create efficient and successful team collaboration, and benefit from advanced automation features.
The applications of shared labels are universal. For example, marketing teams can share conversations related to a new lead with the sales team or the accounts department can work together on an email thread relating to an outstanding invoice.
What’s more, it only takes a couple of clicks to set up Gmelius’ shared email labels. Once an email label is shared, you can find it nested under the Gmelius label on your lefthand Gmail pane.
And if your team is on Slack, you can even use the new Gmelius Slack integration to create full sync between shared labels and your chosen Slack channels.
There’s no need to jump back and forth between platforms; everyone in your team can share and assign emails to other team members, add email notes, and more, either directly from Gmail or Slack.
To create a shared label, follow these steps:
For further details with screenshots follow the article on how to create a shared label.
If you have existing conversations in a label, you can sync the shared label for your team to get these conversations.
You can also nest labels within higher-level, parent categories.
So, if you receive an email from an ACME client who is located in the USA, you can apply the label ‘NEW YORK,’ which is nested under the ‘ACME – USA’ label.
Or, if you need to keep track of expenses, you can create a master folder for invoices and sub-labels for each supplier or expense category.
Follow these steps to set up a nested label in Gmail:
You can easily change a sub-level label into a high-level label by following these steps:
Exactly as with your parent Gmail labels, Gmelius lets you transform Gmail sub-labels into nested shared labels:
You can search by multiple filters in Gmail. For instance, you can search for all emails in one label that were sent by a specific email address.
To search, follow these steps:
You can merge two or more Gmail labels by following these steps:
To delete a normal Gmail label, follow these three steps:
To delete a shared Gmelius label, follow these three steps:
Note that you can only delete a shared label if you created it. If the label was shared with someone else, the label icon in their inbox will change from the Gmelius shared icon to a classic Gmail label icon.
If you have shared a label with colleagues, you can remove them.
Once your colleague is removed, syncing will stop and that person won’t receive shared conversations anymore, but the label will remain in their inbox.
If a label was shared with you, you can leave the shared label.
Also, if you remove someone from your Gmelius subscription, all conversation syncing will stop. New conversations and continued threads will continue syncing immediately.
Gmail is arguably the most feature-packed email provider out there.
Labels are just one piece of Gmail’s functionality, that allow you to customize and organize your workflow.
However, Gmail alone doesn’t do everything. In fact, it lacks core collaboration functionality, such as the ability to share labels with your team.
Fortunately, Gmelius does.
And it’s this powerful combination of Gmail and Gmelius that enables your team to be as productive as possible, save time, and improve efficiency.