Trick #1: Scheduled e-mails
With Boomerang you can delay and decide when an e-mail is being sent. I learnt this hack first from Tim Ferriss.
It can send emails exactly 12:01 in January 1st, though you don’t have to stay late until 12:01 sitting over your laptop to send it.
It also helps me send myself reminder e-mails as and when ideas or a to-do item comes to my head. I don’t want to bother myself otherwise or keep my head occupied.
Add Boomerang app to your Gmail here: www.boomeranggmail.com
Trick #2: Font and Signature Formatting
Do you know you can change and customize the Font, Text Colour, Size, and even e-mail background permanently?
How? Find the steps below
Step 1: Go to the Settings of our GMail account.
It is on the top right corner of your GMail dashboard
Step 2: Find the parameter named ‘Default Text Style’ on the ‘General’ tab of your Settings page.
As you can see, I have customized it to ‘Serif’ from the existing default ‘Sans Serif’. I also increased the Text size and colour (a pale grey).
You can even add ‘customized’ signatures
Instead of writing
Every other time, you can fix and customize a signature to every e-mail you send.
You can permanently create a customized Signature that tags along end of every email automatically.
Trick #3: How to Track that sent e-mail has been opened by the recipient
When you need to send important information via an email to a person or client, all you can do is send an email and wait until the recipient has replied to know that they have received and opened the email you sent them. During times of urgency, this can be a source of distress for you.
With Microsoft Outlook, there is the ‘receipt’ function which allows your email recipient to send a notification telling you that they have read the email. But even this requires an action from them. If they choose to ignore it, you wouldn’t know if they have received and read the email.
There are many solutions for this but most will require you to send an HTML type email where a script will be placed in the email itself. But now with RighInbox, you can forget all that fancy HTML email settings, and still be notified when a person opens and reads your email. RightInbox is a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that will allow you to schedule the sending of an email, and now with the extra feature to track when your email is opened.
Tracking An Email Read Status
It’s very easy to start with, all you need is the Chrome browser, and the RightInbox extension. Download and install.
After Installation is done, open your Gmail Inbox or refresh if it’s already opened. A notification will appear, click ‘Continue’ and then follow the instruction to allow it to access your Gmail.
Now to start tracking your next email, click on ‘Compose’ button in your Gmail Inbox.
In the compose area, you will see an additional ‘Track’ button appear in-line with your ‘Send Now’ button. To track this email, simply check the ‘Track’ button before you hit ‘Send Now’.
That is all you need to do, a simple ‘check’ will help you find out when the email is opened. There is no script required and RightInbox will track the delivery status even if your email content is just a simple plain-text.
Now when the email you sent is opened by the recipient, you will be notified via email with a little more details, that includes the IP and location.
The email tracking by RighInbox is made simple with Chrome browser, and there is no other script to be included in your email content. The notification is sent to you via an email, not via browser popup notification so you can always find out the status of your email even if you are away from your Chrome browser and your computer.
Trick #4: Solve Your Gmail Addiction
If you are like me, you have developed an addiction to Gmail notification. I couldn’t stop my temptation to check my gmail every other time. When I feel I am going out of control I use Inbox Pause. It saved me quite a number of time.
Previously I used StayFocusd to block the site. But 10 minutes is too less a time for me to be on Gmail. I get quite an amount feeds from Newsletter and Subscriptions and I don’t want to miss any. However I use StayFocusd on my Facebook account. It is a blessing in disguise! InboxPause now works better for me.
Track #5: Scheduling Your Life Using Google Calendar
I have written in another place the difference between a task and event. The task is an activity while an event is an appointment. Besides Gmail, GCal is the only other tool that I use extensively both on my laptop and smartphone. I note down events, meetings, appointments, travel plans in the calendar. While I also use my Outlook Calendar also to note down travel visits, the Gcal is versatile in usage. My boss and I also share a google calendar which helps us coordinate and plan our appointments. I even note down my daughter’s vaccination schedule and other appointments.
Gcal simply notifies me whenever thing pop up. Some do use the Gcal very extensively to plan almost every hour of their day. I tried that but I am simply too rebellious to follow a routine. So I simply use Gcal to schedule things when there is second party is involved. For my personal work, I don’t schedule anything. I am simply at the mercy of my will and motivation. I prefer it that way. Some do even recommend using the Google Task option. I found is too simple and lean for my work. I don’t use it.
Trick #6: More Than an E-mail – With Google Docs
Gmail is not just an e-mail service but a online communication and collaborative package. The Google Docs is simply that. For those who are unweary, it is Word, Spreadsheet/ Excel, Powerpoint online. More importantly your friends and colleagues (if shared) to view and edit the document simultaneously on it. DropBox also does this, but it fails to recognize multiple user edits and creates a duplicate document when another user edits. It can save multiple drafts to be sent between your boss and can invite the boss to specifically comment (using the comment option and you get a notification when there is comment). And once to address the comment, you can ‘resolve’ it which again will be notified. As I said before, no more multiple e-mail with draft 01 to draft108, or v1 to v99. Further google docs also allows you to save a document on cloud without wanting to download (a pdf or any other document) on to your laptop. If you wanted, it could also be shared with a friend.
Google Form: is worth a special mention. You can create online survey and data entry forms in this. The responses are stored on a separate spreadsheet.
Trick #7: Filtering Using Gmail Filter
It is a trick I learnt from Maneesh Sethi of ‘Hack The System‘. I was previously ‘Labeling’ e-mails manually. I didn’t know automatic filter. Here you can learn how to automatically filter your e-mails under specific labels as your please.