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getting control of my inbox (gmail)

Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
edited May 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
my inbox is a disaster
like 1000+ unread emails

i cleaned it up once long ago but it came back with a vengeance

things:
- i use filters to label things which is helpful, any suggestions with good labeling ideas
- i'm unsubscribing from a lot of newsletters, but a lot i am just filtering so they get slapped with a newsletter label and get archived automatically... is this a good idea? i'm not even sure what things are important to keep, like emails with sales and promotions... they do skip my inbox now though which is nice

- what emails do you archive, what e-mails do you delete, and what do you leave in your inbox?
and what do you star?

i just need general suggestions for how do get it and KEEP IT organized and clean

| Steam & XBL: Shazkar | 3DS: 3110-5421-3843 |
Shazkar Shadowstorm on

Posts

  • iamthepiemaniamthepieman Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I unsubscribed from everything that might at any time try to sell me something. This is because I'm trying to budget both my time and money and checking out amazon, woot and a dozen other sites everytime they have a sale ends up hurting both my free time and my wallet.

    Seriously, if you want to buy something go seek it out, don't let advertisers into your inbox. Even legit ones.

    I mean if you are looking to buy a camera, maybe sign up for an photography deal alerts, but unsubscribe as soon as your purchase is made.

    iamthepieman on
  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Email sales/promotions are usually only good for a limited time, a few days to a few weeks. There's no real point in keeping them longer then that.

    I used to subscribe to a bunch of IT and technology newsletters, but then I realized I never opened and read them so I unsubscribed them or flagged them as SPAM if they didn't unsubscribe me.

    Any entity from which I need to get emails from (banks/financial insitutions/utility bills) I go to the site and crank down the notifications to the bare minimum and opt-out of everything. I've never had the desire to opt back in to anything.

    Djeet on
  • naporeonnaporeon Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    One suggestion I'd make is that, in future, you use periods in your email address, depending on who you are giving it to. The reason being that Gmail doesn't recognize periods when actually sending the mail, only when filtering it. abc @ gmail.com is the same as a.b.c. @ gmail.com, for the purpose of receipt.

    What I have done is insert superfluous periods when I am using the address for services or websites that are likely to either give it out for spamming, or spam it themselves. Then I set up filters to catch the periods, and send them directly to Archive, rather than Inbox. So if you're address is ShazkarShadowstorm @ gmail.com, you can make use Shazkar.Shadowstorm @ gmail.com, and set up filters for that.

    And personally speaking, I auto-Archive everything that I am not planning to either answer personally, or immediately Archive after seeing.

    naporeon on
  • EarthenrockEarthenrock Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Anything unwanted should be marked as spam if it appears in your inbox.

    Things that I "star" are minimal. Just important e-mails from friends, or things of interest to me at that time, like important dates or something interesting I looked up. Usually less than 10 e-mails at any given time.

    Things that I archive include bank statements, and receipts, as well as other things I want to hold on to for some time. Right now mines at 450 e-mails, so I need to go through it, but I do hold on to receipts for quite a while anyhow. These are put into the "All Mail" section and I look through it once a month deleting things that are no longer important.

    My spam folder gets about 25 e-mails a day, mostly just a quick glance to see if it incorrectly marked something but only if I'm expecting an important e-mail and then I just wipe it.

    Anyhow that's how I operate. Just systematically look at everything and delete anything you don't need. Newsletters should be read, If you want to hold onto it archive it, and then monthly go through your archive and erase it if need be.

    Earthenrock on
  • iamthepiemaniamthepieman Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I've had my gmail account for 6 years and my usage is still only

    385 MB (5%) of my 7449 MB

    I delete everything except personal correspondence.

    I don't even keep email from banks and insurance companies because I can access that stuff all online and I'm afraid that if my account was every compromised it would make it a lot easier for an identity thief.

    iamthepieman on
  • oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I don't delete anything from gmail. I don't really see any reason to organize it because I can just search.

    I don't subscribe to useless mailing lists though so that avoids excess clutter. I also either read or at least mark items as read.

    oldsak on
  • Seattle ThreadSeattle Thread Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I use quite a few labels, as well. All of my Google Voice email is automatically marked as read & archived, which drastically cuts back on clutter. Online reciepts get the same treatment--I don't need to be immediately notified that I've purchased something seconds after purchasing it.

    Using the default Family/Friends/Work labels also helps. The idea is to shift from one big inbox to several smaller, more manageable inboxes. Grandma gets her own label--all that chain email she sends (sometimes two or three per day) stays out of my sight forever, and she knows to call when she needs to get ahold of me.

    As far as what's important, well, that's a subjective matter. I definitely keep my bank statements, personal mail and anything work-related, but everything else is junk in my eyes. Don't be afraid to use the keyword filter option, either, which can further keep what you really need to see up front. For example, most bill-related email gets tagged with my Reciepts label, which archives and marks as read automatically, but my Comcast bill is tagged to remain in my inbox so I know the moment it's due.

    And unsubscribing from unnecessary newsletters and the like is always the best way to cut down on junk. You're on the righttrack, just play around with the filter setting some more and wait for results.

    Seattle Thread on
  • Dr. TrevorkianDr. Trevorkian Registered User
    edited April 2010
    my inbox is a disaster
    like 1000+ unread emails

    i cleaned it up once long ago but it came back with a vengeance

    things:
    - i use filters to label things which is helpful, any suggestions with good labeling ideas
    - i'm unsubscribing from a lot of newsletters, but a lot i am just filtering so they get slapped with a newsletter label and get archived automatically... is this a good idea? i'm not even sure what things are important to keep, like emails with sales and promotions... they do skip my inbox now though which is nice

    - what emails do you archive, what e-mails do you delete, and what do you leave in your inbox?
    and what do you star?

    i just need general suggestions for how do get it and KEEP IT organized and clean

    Inbox Zero: presentation at Google

    Digest the above, modify to suit your needs. The critical pieces are:
    • Process your inbox to zero every time
    • Adhere to whatever system you put together, modify it only when it becomes obvious it's not working
    • Don't be afraid to delete
    As much as you can reroute the newsletters and announcements and so forth through web feeds (RSS/Atom/etc.) or Twitter, depending on urgency and the importance of catching every update. Unsubscribe wherever possible/comfortable.

    I star items in my Todo folder that require immediate attention. (Yes, I said folder. I access my Gmail-hosted mail through Thunderbird and the iPhone client.)
    Anything unwanted should be marked as spam if it appears in your inbox.

    This is outrageously irresponsible. When you mark a message as spam on a hosted service, this contributes to the host's decision of whether or not similar messages are spam for everyone using that service. Marking anything other than spam as spam results in false positives. Outgoing mail server administrators have a tough enough job as it is without having their servers erroneously identified as spam conduits.

    Do that on your local mail client all you want, but don't do it on Gmail, Yahoo Mail, AOL, etc.

    Dr. Trevorkian on
  • Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    these tips are pretty helpful so far

    just watched inbox zero, very helpful

    will see what i can do

    Shazkar Shadowstorm on
    | Steam & XBL: Shazkar | 3DS: 3110-5421-3843 |
  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    If you have newsletters that you are just having skip your inbox and then you never read them, unsubscribe from them. You will never read them.

    Sales/promotions: I have some of these (newegg, dell, etc.) They go into my inbox, I look at them as soon as they get there. If there's nothing I want, delete.

    Other stuff from online accounts (credit card payment reminder, bill payment reminders, facebook) gets stuck with a label for that service automatically (Bank of America, Verizon, etc.) but still ends up in the inbox. I read it, then I hit archive.

    Basically the way this works out is that the only thing I have left in my inbox are e-mails from my friends. That's fine with me, I have no desire to reduce my inbox to 0.

    tsmvengy on
    steam_sig.png
  • Shazkar ShadowstormShazkar Shadowstorm Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    What are typical labels you guys use out of curiosity? Right now I have about 5 different ones but I am just curious, might give me some ideas

    Shazkar Shadowstorm on
    | Steam & XBL: Shazkar | 3DS: 3110-5421-3843 |
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