Gmail is the most widely used web-based email provider, including many companies who, powered by Google, use their domain URLs for professional email addresses. Google continues to roll out improvements to make their email service even better and use Gmail labs as a testing ground for experimental features. Click the gear icon to go your settings, then click on labs to discover more than 20 features you can enable. Here are 10 features that will make your email experience more productive.
1. Custom keyboard shortcuts – If these 20 Essential Keyboard Shortcuts for Gmail Power Users don’t do the trick for you, this feature adds a new Settings tab that lets you customize keyboard shortcuts to remap keys to various actions.
2. Google Calendar gadget – Viewing your calendar requires opening up a new tab. Instead, add a box in the left column to show your Google Calendar to see upcoming court dates, client meetings, and details at a glance.
3. Undo Send – Hit “Send” too soon? We’ve all been there. The feature delays sending the email for a few seconds after you hit the send button so you can stop messages from being sent.
4. Quick Links – Adds a box to the left column that gives you 1-click access to any bookmarkable URL in Gmail. You can use it for saving frequent searches, important individual messages, and more.
5. Multiple Inboxes – Add extra lists of emails in your inbox to see even more important email at once. The new lists of threads can be labels, your starred messages, drafts or any search you want, configurable under Settings.
6. Auto-advance – Automatically shows the next conversation instead of your inbox after you delete, archive, or mute a conversation. This saves lots of time when you’re viewing and deleting emails on your way to a zero inbox.
7. Preview Pane – Provides a preview pane to read mail right next to your list of conversations, making mail reading faster and adding more context. Previous Microsoft Outlook users will appreciate this feature.
8. Quote selected text – Quote the text you have selected when you reply to a message. This is particularly useful for addressing a specific point when replying to long emails.
9. Unread message icon – I only access emails a few times a day and close the tab when I’m done. But if you simply can’t miss an email, or waiting for an important client response, enabling this feature will allow you to see the number of unread emails in your inbox with a quick glance at the tab’s icon in the browser.
10. Google Maps previews in mail – Got lost on your way to a meeting or event? This feature shows Google Map previews of all the addresses found in an email.
After much feedback and testing, some of these Gmail lab features are folded into the native application and new ones appear so stop by the labs occasionally – you might find the email feature you’ve been looking for.