Those who worked during the time the fax machine and the typewriter were indispensable will tell you email was a game-changer.
Sure, email was an innovation of digital technology. However, for many businesses that needed to focus on efficiency, it was a godsend.
In the same way that a comet killed the dinosaurs, technology made the fax machine and the typewriter extinct.
Email catapulted communication light years ahead.
You can correspond with a client 100,000 miles away in real time by clicking the “Send” box.
You can attach documents and images for more comprehensive communication.
An email also makes collaboration easier by allowing you to include others in your thread.
Thanks to email, offices saved thousands of dollars’ worth of paper, stamps, letter envelopes, and thermal rolls per year.
Consequently, the ease and convenience of email made it a crutch.
Everyone communicated with you through email: friends, family, associates, clients, and marketers. Just when you thought you’ve cleared out your inbox, the following day will prove you wrong.
This is why 61% of people check their email first thing in the morning.
That’s right; people want to clean out their inbox first before brushing their teeth!
And it does not end there.
People routinely check their email multiple times a day. One informal online poll showed that 40% of people check their email anywhere from six to 20 times per day.
If you feel trapped in this seemingly endless cycle of checking emails throughout the day, you may need help from the best email apps in the market.
However, as the old saying goes, if you have a problem, the solution starts with yourself.
3 Basic Rules For Efficiently Managing Your Email
There are simple online tools that can help you manage your email.
However, a few basic hacks can get you organized before implementing the wonders of digital technology.
More importantly, these standard practices can help you develop good email management habits.
- Clean Out Old Email – If you want to make room in your home, what do you do? Get rid of old clutter. And that is exactly what you should do with your inbox.
Clean out all email that you have already read and those you don’t need.
Your Spam Folder cleans out messages that have been stored for more than 30 days. You should do the same thing to your inbox.
- Marketing Content – Back then, you probably thought it was a good idea to subscribe. Maybe you had to in order to access the site’s content. So you constantly received newsletters that you planned to read later on.
You didn’t and now it’s just clogging up your inbox. If you don’t have use for the content, unsubscribe to the newsletter right away.
- Maintain One Email If Possible – Ideally, we should keep business and personal communication separate.
However, maintaining two separate email accounts will lead to more distractions. It is also harder to manage two email accounts.
If possible, just maintain one email account. As you will learn, there are online tools that will make it easy to separate professional from personal communication.
Integrate these 3 basic rules on email management to your daily routine. It will make your work and life more productive and stress- free. Now, you can use the following online tools to further organize and manage your email.
Best Online Tools To Help You Manage Your Email
If you prefer to have multiple email accounts, make sure to get Shift. This app lets you access your inboxes from a single location. If you must use other apps, Shift can let you access them too.
Shift makes it easy to organize everything that you need to do. It has an amazing search function that allows you to find, retrieve, and open up your previous conversations.
Instead of switching back and forth from your email to an app, save time by letting Shift organize your workflow.
Spark helps you organize your email by categorizing them as Personal, Newsletters, and Notifications. This way, you will know right away which ones are the priority emails that require immediate attention.
If you work with a team, Spark makes it possible to collaborate closely and effectively.
Instead of just attaching team members to a thread, with Spark you can actively discuss the contents of your email with the group.
In fact, they can collaborate with you in preparing important emails.
Do you want to attach a conversation from a thread in Slack or Skype? Spark can get this done for you.
Marketers love to use email to send materials such as newsletters. Perhaps you may have subscribed to a few.
Over time, these marketing materials can overwhelm your inbox. If you want to clear out the flood of newsletters, unsubscribe with the help of unroll.me.
You may not know it, but you could have subscribed to hundreds or thousands of newsletters.
Unroll.me is a free app that will help you unsubscribe to a large number of newsletters that you no longer want to read.
Do you still plan on keeping some? No problem as unroll.me will let you pick and choose the newsletters you wish to unsubscribe from.
ProtonMail is one of the best email apps you can use if you are seriously concerned about security.
Its servers are located in Switzerland which has some of the strictest privacy laws in the world.
Its end-to-end encryption makes it impossible for the creators of Proton to read your emails.
When signing up, you don’t have to provide the company personal information.
ProtonMail also does not maintain IP logs to keep your accounts more private and secure.
ProtonMail’s modern inbox design makes it very user-friendly and navigable. You will have an easy time sorting and organizing your inbox.
HubSpot Sales is an app that gives you specific information on the recipients of your email.
You will know who opened your emails, when it was clicked on, the number of times it was read, and the location of the recipient.
You will be notified in real time whenever a recipient opens your email and clicks unto its links or attachments.
HubSpot Sales has a contact information sidebar that comes out whenever an email thread is opened. From there, you can see all the key information about the recipient.
IFTTT stands for “If This Then That”. This is an email- productivity app that lets you access other apps and programs that you normally use on a daily basis. With IFTTT, there is hardly anything that you cannot do.
Here are just a few of its wonderful features:
- It will send you a text notification whenever you receive an email from a specific contact.
- Keep tabs on emails you prioritized or starred in your email. IFTTT will send you reminders.
- Want to know how much time you allocate per task? IFTTT tracks your productivity by allowing you to add entries to a Google spreadsheet whenever you come in or leave the office.
SaneBox will keep you sane when it comes to filtering your email. It is an app with a great auto filter feature and pinpoints which ones are priority, secondary, and which ones are junk.
All you have to do is integrate SaneBox with your Google, Office365, Outlook or Yahoo account.
The creators of SaneBox claim security is a top priority of the company. It says most of its corporate accounts such as Coca-Cola, eBay, and Adidas trust its services without the need of a password.
Other great features of SaneBox include giving you reminders, allowing you to include attachments, and send emails to your future self.
Checking the inbox has become a routine habit that it has become counter-productive.
It can disrupt workflow, quality time with loved ones, and even affect your quality of sleep.
If you want to maximize the benefits of email, you must learn how to organize your inbox.
What you want to do is set aside communication that is less important so you can prioritize those which need immediate attention.
Take advantage of the email apps we discussed in this article.
Not only will they organize your inbox, but these apps will also make your life and work so much easier and convenient.