As more of our correspondence takes place electronically -- from shopping to banking statements to love letters -- it can be easy to get overwhelmed by the influx of email received on a daily basis.
Experts say that an organized inbox can save you time and keep you productive, both personally and professionally.
“An organized inbox represents an organized life,” says Josh Rosenwald, CEO of Unroll.me, a tool for consolidating email.
To help, Rosenwald is offering a few tricks to make email work better for you:
When sending emails, pay attention to your subject line – it will help you in the long run. Don’t just use a generic greeting as a subject. Get specific instead.
By being specific in the subject line of your email and in the body of the text, you can make your emails and threads more searchable later when you need them. Referencing past emails is a great way to find information you need quickly, such as phone numbers or the details of an upcoming event or appointment. Just be sure to always spell your keywords correctly and consistently.
“Purchase a few things online; sign up for a few newsletters and before you know it, your inbox will be cluttered with mass marketing emails, many of which will be totally irrelevant to you,” says Rosenwald.
Instead of sorting through the mess, consider using a service like Unroll.me, which can help you streamline your messages. Unroll.me works by searching your inbox for marketing emails, compiling them daily and giving you the option of automatically unsubscribing with a single click or adding the email to your “Daily Rollup,” a single email that functions like an electronic catalog organized by categories, such as travel, shopping, health and beauty. You can even choose what time of day the “Daily Rollup” arrives.
Unroll.me supports Gmail, Google apps and Yahoo Mail. More information can be found at www.unroll.me.
While you won’t be able to tend to every item in your inbox instantaneously, there are plenty of emails that require no more than a one-sentence response.
“There’s no sense in letting these quick action items pile up to the point where they eventually feel unmanageable,” advises Rosenwald. “It will help you feel productive to take care of these smaller tasks right away.”
Whether you use a “to-do” folder in your inbox or a flagging system, be sure to stay organized with those emails you are putting off for later. It can be all too easy to forget they exist.
Just as you wouldn’t let your physical mail pile up, so too should you handle your emails promptly and efficiently.