Did you know that Gmail has a lot of inbuilt tools that can help make your business more efficient?
Most people associate Gmail with the generic email@example.com e-mail and unprofessionalism. I disagree.
I love Gmail and have been a user since Google first launched it in 2004.
What a lot of small businesses owners don’t know is that this free e-mail service is incredibly robust- you can add professional looking emails (firstname.lastname@example.org), track and schedule your emails and even save time through pre-written responses!
Here are the secrets to my speedy e-mail responses:
Get professional with Gmail
Gmail allows you to add your own e-mails- get email@example.com added now!
Domains help with branding and I recommend every business store owner register one, even if they’re comfortable selling on online marketplaces like Etsy.
(I recommend Namecheap since that’s the registrar I use for my domains- their support is lightning fast.)
Once you’ve got the domain registered, just use this app to connect your GoDaddy domain with Gmail.
With Namecheap, head over to this page and select the Personal Mail option for one year of free e-mail hosting.
Tutorial: How to use POP Mail in Gmail
If you’re using a different host, follow these instructions to set it up:
Login to Gmail.
Click on the Gear Icon on the top right (it looks like a little bolt).
Click on “Accounts and Import.”
Scroll down and click on “Add a POP3 mail account you own.”
A pop-up will appear.
Enter your e-mail address.
Push the Next Step button.
Fill in your account details. (Your host can provide the POP server and port).
Cilck on “Add Account.”
If you want, you can check the “Archive incoming messages (Skip the Inbox)” and “Label incoming messages” boxes so the messages will be organized.
Tutorial: How to sort e-mails in Gmail
Login to Gmail and click on the gear icon on the top right.
Click on Settings.
Click on Filters.
Scroll down to the bottom and click on Create a new filter.
You don’t have to fill out all the options- just the ones you want Gmail to search for and sort.
For example, I want to filter all the e-mails with “Press” in the subject line, so I enter “Press” in the Subject field.
Click on Create filter with this search >>
Check these three boxes:
Skip the Inbox (Archive it)
Apply the label: (and pick a label name)
Also apply filter to __ matching conversations.
Push the Create filter button.
And you’re done!
These e-mails can be accessed through the list on the left sidebar on Gmail. When you get a new e-mail that fits this criteria, the label will be bolded.
Tutorial: How to pre-write emails in Gmail
The bigger your business grows, the more e-mails you will receive and need to send. To save time, pre-write your most common responses by using Gmail’s canned response feature.
Once you’re logged in to Gmail, head over to the gear icon on the top right and select “Settings.”
Click on “Labs.”
Set Canned Responses to “Enabled.”
Scroll down and push the “Save Changes” button.
When you want to write a new template in Gmail, click on “Compose” on the left and write out your template.
When you’re done, click on the downward arrow at the bottom of the e-mail box. Select “Canned responses” > “New canned response“… and choose a name.
Whenever you want to use that template, just click on the arrow again and select it under “Insert.”
Tutorial: How to track e-mails in Gmail
Ever wondered if the customer actually received your e-mail or if your product pitches aren’t being read at all? RightInbox is a Gmail app that helps you track if your e-mails have been opened.
To install RightInbox for Gmail and start tracking your sent emails, head over to RightInbox’s download page and download it.
Go back to Gmail and you’ll see a prompt pop up, accept it and you’re good to go!
To track e-mails within Gmail, just check the box at the bottom of the compose box.
I use this for my pitches- if my e-mail hasn’t been opened within 3 weeks, I know that my subject likely wasn’t eye-catching enough or unsolicited submissions aren’t looked at. And if I don’t hear a response within a week of an e-mail being opened, I know that while my subject was good, the actual pitch was either poor or had wrong-timing.
Tutorial: How to time your e-mails through Gmail
The time of day you send your e-mails has a huge impact on its success. Did you know that people are more likely to open mail on Sundays if it’s sent early morning?
With RightInbox, you can actually schedule your e-mails in Gmail.
Click on the blue button on the bottom left of the compose box to set a sending time.