Gmail Shortcuts: Go Mouse-less

How many people use Gmail? Tons, we reckon. Certainly we do. In fact, we spend so much time in our email that we came up with a whole suite of software to solve the problem of meeting scheduling. But, as users, we are eager to save time even before Amy or Andrew come into the picture. We believe that even a small amount of time saved can really add up, which is why many of us use Gmail shortcuts.

Gmail has a ton of keyboard shortcuts that you can enable with the click of a button. Here’s how to turn them on:

  1. Go to Settings, located in the top right corner of your Gmail
  2. Go to the General tab and scroll down to “Keyboard Settings”
  3. Select “on”
  4. Don’t forget to scroll down and click “save”

Now you’re all set! Gmail keyboard shortcuts should be turned on and ready to go. There are dozens you can utilize, but here are a few tried and true Gmail shortcuts to get started.

Open a new compose window

Just tap the C key! Seriously, it’s that easy. And if you want to open a separate compose window, just tap  / Shift+C.

Clearing your inbox

Instead of clicking through emails, use the J and K keys to move up and down through your inbox. If you want to expand a certain email, hit Enter.

Sifting through conversations

Email threads can get crazy long, and the longer they are the harder they are to navigate. Use the N and P keys to move up and down through a conversation thread (and same idea, to expand a specific convo, hit Enter).

Move emails to trash or archive

Use the # symbol (or, more specifically, Shift+3) to move any email instantly to the trash. You can also click the E key to send the email to your archive.

Mark emails as unread

Even after I read emails, I like to leave them marked as unread if I don’t have time to respond to them right away. To mark an email you’re in or have selected as unread, just click Shift+U.

Move to your starred or drafts folder

We all have our own way of organizing our inbox, whether it’s leaving emails unread, starring important messages for later, or even drafting emails as you go. To zip straight from your inbox to your starred folder, click the G key and then the S key in order. Similarly, to access the drafts folder, click the G key followed by the D key.

These are just a few Gmail shortcuts to get you started, but if you want to learn more head over to this Google Support post. They list dozens of shortcut options, and even explain how to create a custom shortcut. Sounds like something we’d do 😉