Communication is essential in today’s world. And the next best means of getting in touch with people after the telephone is email. As amazing as email can be, it has its downsides. Many people typically end up spending hours checking their emails every day when they should spend no more than 30mins-1hr on it.

Truth is your email should add to your productivity, not take away from it. So, if you have been spending way too much time on your emails and need some help with that, the following tips should help you cut back and allow you get the most out of your day whilst still attending to your emails.

Setup Filters

These are excellent for either automatically forwarding emails to certain parties or immediately moving those emails to other folders. This facility is available in all email clients. All you have to do is create a label for them and specify what you want done with emails that have certain words in them.

For instance, if you are member of a few business forums, you could setup filters that will automatically move all emails with the word “forum” to a specific folder that you have set up for that purpose. This will help keep your emails uncluttered and most importantly, help you attend to the more important emails immediately.

5 Things That Will Increase Your Email Efficiency

Create High Priority Folders

These are essentially folders where all the important stuff goes. This could be inquiries from clients, client feedback email, requests for a meeting or even invoice payments… essentially; whatever you think is high priority. You could also create filter to move these emails to the high priority folder immediately or move them yourself once you’ve seen them.

High priority folders are not only essential, they help keep you productive. With them in place, you know which emails are first and most important. So, if for instance you have just 30 minutes in the morning, you can quickly scan through those emails, reply or delegate them and move on to other things.

Reply High Priority Emails Immediately

High priority and high urgency emails often require immediate replies. Do not pile them up with the intention to attend to them later. Attend to them as soon as you see them. Not only will this save you some time, it’ll also save you from the embarrassments a late reply might cause.

Most importantly, have a clear idea of which emails should be high priority and which shouldn’t. For instance, a daily update email from Basecamp is not as important as a remote employee asking for specific information about your software coding. Hope that makes sense.

Check Emails Periodically

Allot specific time to checking your email. If you’re like most business people, you probably check your email every opportunity you get. If there are no new email notifications, you’ll refresh just be doubly sure. This is not the best way to spend your time. What you should do however, is simply allocate time chunks t checking your email. It could 30 minutes in the morning, 45 minutes in the afternoon and 1 hour in the evening after work. It’s your call.

Turn Off All Email Notifications

This is particularly important if you have an email app on your phone. Even if your desktop email notifications aren’t turned on, leaving the email notification on your phone on will most likely distract you. Nowadays, we all subconsciously believe that any new email is urgent. Therefore, we all tend to unconsciously reach for the phone every time a new mail comes in. So, when it’s not “email time”, turn off all email notifications. If you’re using an android phone, this is as simple as turning off your data or Wi-Fi.

Your email is a tool that’s meant to help make your life easier. Don’t allow it control you and dictate your life.

Today’s post was provided by Oscar King from Orlando, Florida. Oscar is a skilled blogger with a keen attention to detail. He currently works as a content writer for Oscar enjoys spending his spare time traveling which has helped him become an expert in email management.