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5 Tips To Use Gmail More Effectively: Part 1 of 2

Google estimates the average person spends 13 hours every week using their email. That’s almost two full work days a week devoted to the task. If you weren’t concerned about being productive with Gmail before, now might be a great time to start! You don’t have to be obsessive compulsive to optimize your Gmail application. Just try these 5 suggestions and you’ll be well on your way to Gmail Nirvana.
Using the Priority Inbox not only makes your Gmail account look smarter, it organizes your messages into a very logical way. As the name suggests, priority Inbox ensures you can easily see those messages which are a top priority.
To enable Priority Inbox point your mouse at the Inbox label just at the left side of your Gmail screen. Then click the small drop down arrow on the right side of the Inbox button, and select Priority Inbox. This will set your Gmail Inbox into three categories: Important and Unread,  Starred, and Everything Else. This will give you the option to go to your inbox or priority inbox. It also labels certain messages as “priority“.
Another great Gmail tip is to use SmartLabels (note: this feature is still in Google Labs).
Smart Labels automatically categorizes incoming Bulk, Notification and Forum messages, and labels them as such. These are typically machine-generated messages that usually do not need replies.They get labeled accordingly, and can be filtered out of your inbox and filed for later reading. 
To enable the SmartLabels application, click the drop down arrow on the Gear Menu. Then click the Settings button, and then the Lab button. On the Lab button, search for SmartLabels. Then enable SmartLabels. Lastly, Save the changes you made in the Setting page.
If you are tired of manually sorting your email messages in your Inbox then this feature is for you. The Gmail filter application automatically sorts your email messages to save you a lot of time.
To enable your Filter application, click the Gear Menu which is the round icon on the right side of your Gmail screen. Click Settings then click Filters. Click the button which states Select A New Filter. You have to fill in the criteria set in the Filter page in order to appropriately sort out messages. Or, use opt in toSmartLables and it will create filters for you.
Want to clean your Gmail Inbox without losing important messages? Then use Gmail Archives to lessen the amount of emails in your Inbox. When you archive a message it is not deleted, but stored for later retrieval.  To find that email, use the Gmail search box and type in any word or email address from that email.
To manage your old emails and transfer them to the archives, again use the Search box at the top of your Gmail screen. Enter: Inbox before:mm/dd/yyyy. Once the search results appear, select the messages that you want to transfer; click the Archive button and your Inbox will now be cleaned of those old messages.
Just like any other computer application, knowing a few shortcuts will go a long way to saving your time over the long haul. To enable shortcuts, open your Gmail Settings on the right side of your Gmail screen. Select the General tab, then turn on Keyboard Shortcuts button. Make sure to save your changes in your Gmail Settings. Once your Keyboard Shortcuts application is on, there is a small blue line indicator at the left of your screen beside your top Gmail message. Now you can refer to this page to view all the shortcuts Gmai has to offer.
If you have any Gmail Tips & Tricks you’d like to share please post them below. We might publish them in Part 2 of 5 Tips To Use Gmail More Effectively.

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