How to Organize Your Inbox

Is your inbox overwhelming you? Here’s how to organize your email for greater team productivity. With emails pouring in from customers, clients, and colleagues, it's easy to feel bogged down in your inbox.

Peter Jacobs

While email is a valuable tool for communication, it can also be time-consuming and overwhelming. As a team leader, it's important to implement an email organization strategy that works for everyone. In this article, we will explore how to organize your inbox to improve team productivity.

The Benefits of Email Organization

Before diving into strategies for email organization, it's essential to understand why email organization is crucial for team productivity. Here are a few benefits:

  • Less time spent searching for emails
  • Improved response time to urgent emails
  • Reduced email overload and stress
  • Better collaboration and communication within teams

Strategies for Email Organization

1. Create Folders

One of the easiest ways to organize your inbox is to create folders for different categories of emails. For example, you might have a folder for customer inquiries, a folder for marketing updates, and a folder for invoices. When you receive an email, move it to the appropriate folder. This helps you quickly find what you need and reduces clutter in your inbox.

2. Use Filters and Rules

Filters and rules are a powerful tool for email organization. They allow you to automatically sort emails based on sender, subject, keywords, and more. For example, you might create a rule to automatically move all emails from your boss to a "Priority" folder. This ensures that important emails are not buried in your inbox and that you can quickly respond to urgent requests.

3. Unsubscribe from Unnecessary Emails

It's easy to get caught up in cluttered inboxes when you're subscribed to too many newsletters, social media notifications, and other non-essential emails. Take some time to go through your inbox and unsubscribe from any unnecessary emails. This will help you keep your inbox tidy and reduce the number of non-essential emails you receive.

4. Use Email Management Tools

There are numerous email management tools available that can help you organize your inbox. For example, tools like Boomerang allow you to schedule emails to be sent later or remind you to follow up on emails that you haven't received a response to. Other email management tools like Sortd or Hiver allow you to turn your inbox into a to-do list, making it easy to prioritize and manage your tasks.

Best Practices for Email Organization

1. Set a Limit on Email Checking

Constantly checking your inbox can be a major productivity killer. To avoid this, set a limit on how often you check your inbox. For example, you might check your email first thing in the morning, after lunch, and before you leave for the day. This helps you stay focused on your work and reduces distractions.

2. Respond to Urgent Emails First

When you're dealing with a high volume of emails, it can be challenging to prioritize what to respond to first. A good rule of thumb is to respond to urgent emails first. This ensures that important requests are addressed promptly and helps reduce stress and overwhelm.

3. Use Clear and Concise Subject Lines

A clear and concise subject line can make a world of difference in email organization. When creating a subject line, be specific and make sure it accurately reflects the content of the email. This helps recipients quickly identify the purpose of the email and makes it easier to search for later.


Organizing your inbox is essential for team productivity. By using strategies like creating folders, using email management tools, and setting a limit on email checking, you can reduce stress, improve response times, and make it easier to collaborate with your team. Remember to keep your inbox tidy, respond to urgent emails first, and use clear and concise subject lines to maximize the benefits of email organization.


Q: How often should I check my email?

A: There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. It's up to you to determine how often you need to check your email based on your workload and communication needs. However, it is generally recommended to check your email no more than three times a day to minimize distractions and improve productivity.

Q: Can I use email filters to automatically delete emails?

A: While it's tempting to use email filters to automatically delete non-essential emails, it's generally not recommended. It's easy for important emails to get caught in filters or for filters to inadvertently delete important messages. A better strategy is to use filters to move emails to specific folders for better organization.

Q: How can I make sure I don't miss important emails?

A: To ensure you don't miss important emails, consider setting up notifications or alerts for specific senders or keywords. You can also use email management tools like Boomerang to remind you to follow up on emails that require a response. Additionally, it's a good practice to periodically review your email filters and rules to make sure important emails are not being diverted to the wrong folder.

Take the shortcut...

Try a shared inbox build for team productivity

Ready to see the magic in action?

Book a free tour.
30 minutes.

Try it yourself.
Free forever.