what are the features of gmail account
Gmail is Google’s online email service. It is a “cloud” web service, meaning that it stores all your data and emails online. As such, you are able to access your emails from any computer or phone, irrespective of your geographical location. Additionally, Gmail gives you access to email even without an Internet connection. Initially, Gmail was largely used by individuals as a personal email service. However, this web service offers significant benefits and features for businesses too. Gmail is a free service with features that make it a versatile interface to communicate and collaborate with employees and clients. You can also search through your emails with Gmail and store the ones you want to save without worrying if they will be deleted or not. Google gives you 10 years to decide if you want to delete them or not.
There are in-built features on Gmail that you can use to customize your Gmail interface to your specific business demands.
Create a Gmail Account on Your Own Domain – Gmail, as a feature of Google Apps, allows you and your business to look professional by creating a Gmail account that includes your company domain name. Instead of sending emails to clients with your “@gmail.com” address, you can incorporate your company’s domain name so that your email reads email@example.com. All of your employees can also get Gmail addresses with a similar format. This approach provides credibility to your business, as well as a brand identity that clients can identify with.
Customized Signature – Customizing a signature will save you the task of writing your name, title and contact details every time you send an email. In addition, a customized signature that includes informative snippets about your company serves as a subtle but effective marketing tool. To create a customized signature, use the “Settings tab” above your inbox and then insert your text signature.
Task Management – The task management tool in Gmail lets you integrate your to-do list on the email interface. With the task manager, you can create more than on to-do list, add reminders, add emails that you need to reply to, cancel tasks that you have completed and prioritize the tasks on your to-do list. The Task Manager is a component of Google Labs. Thus, you will need to go to Gmail Labs tab to activate the task manager tool. After enabling the Tasks icon, refresh the Gmail page to access the Task Manager tool.
Gmail Offline – Gmail allows you to access emails and to keep in contact with employees and clients even when you do not have an Internet connection. When you activate his tool through the Settings Tab, Gmail begins to store data into your computer’s hard disk. This data is synchronized with Gmail servers so that when you go online, Gmail uses the data in its servers instead of relying on the Internet connection. The messages that you send while you are offline are stored in the Outbox and are sent as soon as Gmail detects Internet connectivity.
Send Automatic Replies – The “send automatic replies” function helps you save time when replying to familiar queries. You can access the “Canned Messages” tool form “Gmail Labs.” Then, insert the messages, reports and replies that you commonly send to employees and clients, and save these. Every time you need to answer a common question, just click the “Canned Messages” link and choose the message you would like to send.
Send Email from Another Address – Gmail allows you to use addresses other than your current Gmail address to send and reply to emails. This allows you to manage emails from other accounts in a single Gmail interface. Visit the “Accounts and Import” option under the Gmail Settings Tab to activate this feature. To use an alternative sender address, click on “Add another email address you own.”
Managing Different Email Accounts – Managing emails sent to different accounts is challenging and time consuming if you have to keep switching between different web services. Gmail lets you route up to five email accounts into the Gmail interface. Click on “Add a POP3 mail account you own” to add new email accounts. This option will redirect all the emails from your other accounts into your Gmail account, allowing you access to everything within a single interface.
Filter Spam from Your Email Account – Spam messages are unwanted messages that can clutter up your inbox. When spam messages get to your inbox, it can be difficult to differentiate between wanted and unwanted messages. To avoid wasting time on reading and deleting spam messages, Gmail filters these types of messages and keeps them from appearing in your inbox. If Gmail sends a message to the spam box that should be in your inbox, you can transfer this message to where it belongs. Through the new tool “Hub of spam,” Gmail allows you to determine the reasons why some messages were sent to the spam box.
Back up Your Gmail to Your Hard Disk – In the event that Google has a massive breakdown with its Gmail servers, it is possible, although highly unlikely, that you’ll lose all the data stored in your Gmail account. The loss of essential data could be disastrous for your company. However, Gmail lets you save your emails and data onto your computer’s hard disk. You can use the “Mozilla Thunderbird” email software to save your data. Visit the Settings Tab on the Gmail interface and choose the “Forwarding and POP/IMAO” option. Choose “POP,” as it is simpler to use than IMAP. Then choose the “Enable POP for all mail” option. Then, select the option “Keep Gmail’s Copy in the Inbox” because you are only backing up the data. Thunderbird will launch and request you to insert your Gmail username and password to allow this software to begin saving your emails and data.
Chat and Video Chat – Gmail chat allows you to communicate with employees and clients regardless of their location. The chat function lets you have an instant conversation, which takes a conveniently shorter delivery period of time than email. You can also host or attend videoconferences with clients and virtual employees through Video Chat. Alternatively, you can use voice messaging to communicate. You and the people you are communicating with only need to have a web camera and an activated video plug-in to hold video conversations.
Use Google Talk to Leave a Voice Message – Google Talk, a feature of Gmail, allows you to talk to your contacts for free, as long as Internet connectivity is available. The voicemail service lets you leave messages for clients when they are not available to talk with you at that moment. You can leave messages whether or not they are signed in to Google Talk. The voicemail service allows you up to ten minutes of talking time. Your clients or employee will be able to receive the voicemails you leave for them through their email accounts.
Share Media with Google Talk – If you are holding an IM (instant messaging) conversation through Google Talk and need to send a file or a video link, using the chat window, select “Send File Option” and then the file(s) that you want to send. You can either send files saved on your computer or send Internet links. The reception is instant and keeps the conversation flowing.
Apply Different Themes – You can create a customized Gmail interface that reflects your preferences and makes using Gmail much easier for you. Gmail’s theme builder lets you choose theme colors and images that will then appear in the background of your interface. Once you apply the themes, they come on immediately. You can easily change them whenever you want. To create a customized Gmail inbox, visit the “Settings” tab on the interface and chose the “Themes” option.
Stop Sent Messages from Being Delivered – The new Gmail Lab feature “Got the Wrong Bob” enables you to stop your email’s recipient from receiving a message. This feature is especially useful if you sent the wrong information to your client or employees. Activate this feature under the Lab tab in Settings, Gmail identifies the added or omitted recipient in a group email and then terminates the message before it reaches the recipient. “Don’t Forget Bob” is another feature that suggests recipients that you might want to add when you send a new email. This feature ensures that you do not leave out any relevant clients or employees for whom the email is also meant.
Integrated Gmail – This is a Firefox add-on that simplifies your experience on Gmail. This add-on allows you to collapse the inbox so that you can add other gadgets that you are currently working on, or those gadgets that you use frequently. By collapsing the inbox, you are able to customize your interface by adding Google Apps, News Feeds, calendar and Picasa. Integrated Gmail saves you the time that you would spend switching between tabs while using all these gadgets.
Google Mail Checker Plus – This is a Gmail add-on that allows you to manage your emails better. Available from “Gmail Lab,” this feature enables you to read your email without leaving the tab that you are currently on, loading and re-loading Gmail whenever you want to check for new messages. By installing this ad-on, Gmail will send you updates on your computer about your inbox activity. You can also delete, filter spam, save and star the mail coming into your inbox. Mail Checker Plus will monitor this and send you the relevant notifications even if you are working on something else.
Gmail Drive – As a Gmail add-on, “Gmail Drive” acts as a virtual storage facility for you Gmail interface. It enables you to store files in the same way you would store them in your actual computer hard disk drive. This add-on aloes you to utilize the Gmail interface as a storage space. Gmail Drive creates a new drive in the “My Computer” folder allowing you to save and access files from your Gmail from any browser that you are in. if allows you to create folders and files in the same way that you would on a hard drive.
Hide Gmail Ads – Gmail allows you to hide any advertisements that appear on the interface. These ads can be distractive, but you can remove them by visiting the Settings Tab and clicking on the “Web Clips,” and then unchecking the “Show My Web Clips’ above the inbox options. Hiding Gmail Ads that appear on your interface not only eliminates distraction but also gives you a wide looking interface for ease of use.
Boomerang for Gmail – This feature allows you to write emails that will be automatically sent on a later date. This feature is a Gmail add-on that helps you organize your business activities and appointments in a way that you will not leave out important tasks such as sending emails to your clients. You can also use Boomerang to avoid distraction form incoming emails. By activating this feature, you are able to divert emails. By activating this feature, you are able to divert emails from your inbox into another folder until you are ready to read them. In addition to keeping off distracting emails, this feature can also help you to un-clutter your inbox. Boomerang also alerts you when someone does not reply to your email.
Primary-Social-Promotions – You’ve probably discovered the new Gmail look where emails are automatically sorted in three inboxes: Primary, Social and Promotions. If you want your customers to receive your emails in their “Primary” inbox then advise them to un-check the “Promotions” box. If a mailing goes to more than just a few people, Gmail consider it as a promotion.
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