How to use the Advanced Search in Gmail

Empower your Gmail searches to make it easier to find the needle in the proverbial haystack.

How to use the Advanced Search in Gmail Empower your Gmail searches to make it easier to find the needle in the proverbial haystack.

If your Gmail inbox is anything like mine, it's full. Maybe not full to the point of causing you to run out of precious Google cloud account space, but full enough that locating important emails can be a challenge. 

Of course, you can always type a sender address in the Gmail search bar to narrow down that hunt. But what if your inbox has a figurative metric ton of email from that particular sender? You don't want to have to search through that mess. 

Instead, take advantage of the Gmail Advanced Search feature. It's really quite easy to use, and it empowers you to be able to narrow down your search results by subject, keywords, size, date, attachment, and more. 

SEE: G Suite: Tips and tricks for business professionals (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Using Advanced Search in Gmail

Open Gmail and click the downward-pointing arrow at the right edge of the search bar. The Advanced Search drop-down will open where you can then narrow down your search. As with any advanced-type search, the more information you include, the more narrow your results. 

If you know the sender name or email address, an approximate date, if the email had an attachment, and keywords that might be included in either the subject or the body, you should be able to locate the email in question without having to do much scrolling at all. Another handy feature to the search is the ability to create a filter. You can always type out the search filters in the search bar, but using the drop-down makes this much easier. 

Once you've filled out your search criteria, you can either tap Search to view the results, or tap Create Filter to create an automated filter for the results. If you click Create Filter, you'll then be prompted to set an action for the filter. Actions can be anything from archiving, marking as read, starring, labeling, forwarding, deleting, and more. Select your action and click Create Filter. Now anytime an email arrives that matches your criteria, the action you've selected will occur. 

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Image: Jack Wallen