People receive an average of between 100-120 emails per day! This could be from work, activities in your personal life, or from services you've signed up for.
But receiving this many emails can be very overwhelming and can be hard to follow. Trying to weed out the emails which need responding to can be difficult if your inbox is always full. So how do you manage this email overload?
This article is here to give you the best tips and tricks for email cleanup. This way, you can keep your inbox as minimal as possible, allowing you to keep on top of things. Let's get started!
Make Time For Your Email List
When you live a busy life, it can be difficult to find time to go through your email list. Over time, you will find it harder and harder as the number of emails you have grows. The best way to prevent this is to time block each day or week to go through your emails.
If you create a regular slot to do this, then this stops them from getting out of hand. There are several advantages to time blocking as an email management strategy.
It stops email checking from distracting you from other tasks. This is often known as "email creep." Looking at your inbox can be a black hole for time, and can reduce the time for other important tasks.
This will also help you to create more efficient strategies for dealing with your inbox. You could try the "one-touch rule" to simplify things. In a nutshell, this is where you only look at an email once and deal with it immediately.
This could be deleting it right away if it isn't needed or responding right away. If you don't have time to reply immediately, forward the emails to someone else so they can action them.
If you are trying to keep on top of work emails, then try to get your inbox tidy before Friday afternoon. This means when you open it on Monday morning, you won't have things carrying over from the previous week.
Respond Quickly to Important Emails
It might be tempting to procrastinate over replying to your emails. But being proactive in responding will help clean up your inbox. This fits with time blocking, as important emails may be time-consuming to write.
If you receive a lot of similar emails, such as inquiries about your business, try templates. Having a folder of pre-written responses which you can edit will save time so you can empty your inbox in a blink.
Many email providers allow you to insert these responses into your emails directly. So you can even cut out the time of needing to copy and paste. Make the most of these email shortcuts, as it saves a lot of time.
Make the Most of Swipe Features
The most common way that people access their emails is on their mobile devices. Between 85-90% of people will use their phones, so it is important to make your inbox optimized for on the go.
A useful feature that you can use in your mobile inbox is to use the swipe controls.
Most devices allow you to customize what happens when you swipe left or right or hold down on an email. So you can have one swipe set up to archive, one to delete, and one to move emails to a certain folder. You can also select many emails at once to delete or move them.
This will speed up your email cleanup time a lot, and you'll have more time for responding to your important mail. This is helpful for times when you haven't been into your inbox for a while, like after a vacation.
Delete, Delete, Delete!
It is very easy when you are receiving a lot of emails, to read them and then leave them to pile up in your inbox. Some emails are important, but most are spam or quick correspondence that you don't need to hold on to.
Get into the habit of deleting things as soon as they're handled. That way you will only have the important emails in your inbox and will stop you from feeling overloaded.
If you have work emails that you can't delete, then you can always try archiving them. That way they aren't clogging up your inbox, but you can still access them if you need to. If you search for a keyword or subject, then these should still appear, even if you have archived them.
Take Advantage of Email Labels
Most email providers allow you to organize and label your emails. Every label gives you the option to add a name and a color. You can even add sub-categories to organize further.
This helps email management as you can identify subjects or senders with ease. This is great if you have a large shared inbox as well, as you can separate emails to reduce confusion.
Make sure every time you receive an email that you file it right away. Once you file the email, every time there is a new email in that thread it will have the colored label next to it. This has the added benefit that you will be able to find emails a lot easier.
There are some emails that you might not need to look at right away, like information for a meeting in a few weeks. Store these in a non-urgent follow-up folder, which reminds you to follow up on it once you have time later in the week.
Filter Your Emails
Adding filters to your inbox is a very efficient way of organizing your emails. Filters will sort your emails into different folders rather than having one big list of incoming mail. This can help you to focus on the important emails, as they will all be in specific places, not mixed in with spam emails.
Many email providers now have a three-tab inbox, with primary, promotions, and social folders. Make use of these as well creating your own filing system.
Don't forget that you can create priority inboxes that push important items to the top. You can also organize important items by flagging or using star tags to show what is urgent.
Unsubscribe to Unnecessary Emails
One way to improve email management is to unsubscribe from unnecessary emails. But it can be very time-consuming to go through and unsubscribe from each subscription one by one.
You can try using helpful services to unsubscribe from unwanted emails on mass. For a small monthly fee, you can use an email cleanup service like Mailstrom to declutter your inbox. These services work on desktops as well as having an app for mobile devices.
A tip for removing unwanted marketing emails is to filter using the word "unsubscribe." Emails of this type usually have an unsubscribe link in them. So you can do a quick search and then put everything you want to unsubscribe from in one folder for easy cleaning!
Remember that the best way to prevent unwanted emails is to stop signing up for new mailing lists. Be mindful about which companies you give your email to. This way you will only receive emails that bring value to your life.
Set Communication Boundaries
Emails are great for communication, but sometimes there are other ways to keep in touch. Think about those you have regular contact with, and whether you can talk to them in another way.
Video calls or instant messaging can be a much quicker way to talk about a large volume of information. It will save you from having to go back and forth via email, and you can avoid any miscommunication.
You can now have video conferences with many people at once, which can reduce how many people email you. Rather than having a conversation via email with three different people, you can talk to them all at the same time.
If you discuss important information during the call, email detailed notes afterward. This will give a clear summary of what you discussed in one email rather than many chats.
Become the Master of Email Cleanup
Keeping on top of email cleanup may seem difficult, but it doesn't have to be! Following the tips in this article will help you get organized with your emails. This stops overloading and increases efficiency in responding to important emails.
If you are looking for an intuitive and easy way to unsubscribe from emails, use Mailstrom. We help you manage your inbox with one click, removing unwanted spam and promotions. We also use industry-leading encryption, so your internet privacy is in safe hands.
Sign up now to start your free trial and become the master of email cleanup!