Before Outlook 2013, you were stuck with an alphabetical listing of folders. Now, you can move folders to any position you choose.
Let's work through a few quick examples. The figure below shows a simple folder list in alphabetical order. Now suppose you want the Waiting On Something folder to appear at the top of the list - it contains time-sensitive and important stuff. First, select it. Then, drag it to the top of the list and drop it. Yes, it really is a simple drag-and-drop task now!
If you change your mind, you have two options.
- Move the folder using drag-and-drop.
- Right-click the folder and choose Sort Subfolders A to Z. In this case, that option is dimmed because Waiting On Something isn't a subfolder. When using this option, Outlook reorders only the subfolders in the selected folder.
You might not like this behavior or, you might want to temporarily disable it as follows:
- Click the Folder tab.
- Check the Show All Folders A To Z.
Outlook will resort all of your folders into alphabetical order. While this option is enabled, Outlook won't let you move folders. It isn't a permanent disable; if you unclick this option, Outlook returns the list to its custom order.
If you're using an older version of Outlook, you can force a folder to the top (or bottom) of the list, but the results aren't as pretty. To force a folder to the top of the list, prefix the folder name with a special character, such as _ or *. Outlook sorts these characters first, so this type of prefix rises to the top. Similar, prefixing a folder name with the character z will force a folder to the bottom of the list. I told you it wasn't pretty, but it works.