Gmail Keyboard ShortcutsAs a mobile worker, often working on the road, in coffee shops and diners, I rely heavily on a mobile computing environment. The tool I use the most is Google's Gmail.

Love Google or hate Google, they make damned fine tools most of the time. And Gmail is normally rock-solid and made for the mobile internet marketer.

Today, I want to show you some real time savers when it comes to using Gmail: Keyboard shortcuts. Over the course of a day, learning and using just a few of these Gmail keyboard shortcuts could save you several minutes. That adds up over a year's time, trust me.

Now, I don't spend all day on email. I try to check email once in the morning, once around the middle of the day, and once at the end of the day (that's probably 2 times too many). Because I not only do internet marketing but also computer consulting where my customers are dependent upon me to resolve or help them with their web hosts (depending on our arrangement), I need to be a little more connected to my email.

Having said all that, I really need to be efficient when it comes to dealing with email. One of the things that enables me to be super-effective in this regard is the use of keyboard shortcuts. Without further ado, here they are. While they don't make the most intuitive sense, once you commit them to memory (hint: print out the really important ones and tape the sheet to your laptop), you will use them all the time.

Shortcut Key Definition Action
c Compose Allows you to compose a new message. <Shift> + c allows you to compose a message in a new window.
/ Search Puts your cursor in the search box.
k Move to newer conversation Opens or moves your cursor to a more recent conversation. You can hit <Enter> to expand a conversation.
j Move to older conversation Opens or moves your cursor to the next oldest conversation. You can hit <Enter> to expand a conversation.
n Next message Moves your cursor to the next message. You can hit <Enter> to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in 'Conversation View.')
p Previous message Moves your cursor to the previous message. You can hit <Enter> to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in 'Conversation View.')
o or <Enter> Open Opens your conversation. Also expands or collapses a message if you are in 'Conversation View.'
u Return to conversation list Refreshes your page and returns you to the inbox, or list of conversations.
e Archive Archive your conversation from any view.
m Mute Archives the conversation, and all future messages skip the Inbox unless sent or cc'd directly to you. Learn more.
x Select conversation Automatically checks and selects a conversation so that you can archive, apply a label, or choose an action from the drop-down menu to apply to that conversation.
s Star a message or conversation Adds or removes a star to a message or conversation. Stars allow you to give a message or conversation a special status.
+ Mark as important Helps Gmail learn what's important to you by marking misclassified messages. (Specific to Priority Inbox)
Mark as unimportant Helps Gmail learn what's not important to you by marking misclassified messages. (Specific to Priority Inbox)
! Report spam Marks a message as spam and removes it from your conversation list.
r Reply Replies to the message sender. <Shift> + r allows you to reply to a message in a new window. (Only applicable in 'Conversation View.')
a Reply all Replies to all message recipients. <Shift> +a allows you to reply to all message recipients in a new window. (Only applicable in 'Conversation View.')
f Forward Forwards a message. <Shift> + f allows you to forward a message in a new window. (Only applicable in 'Conversation View.')
<Esc> Escape from input field Removes the cursor from your current input field.

<Ctrl> + s

Save draft

Saves the current text as a draft when composing a message. Hold the <Ctrl> key while pressing s and make sure your cursor is in one of the text fields — either the composition pane, or any of the To, CC, BCC, or Subject fields — when using this shortcut.

#

Delete

Moves the conversation to Trash.

l

Label

Opens the Labels menu to label a conversation.

v

Move to

Moves the conversation from the inbox to a different label, Spam or Trash.

<Shift> + i Mark as read Marks your message as 'read' and skip to the next message.
<Shift> + u Mark as unread Marks your message as 'unread' so you can go back to it later.
[ Archive and previous Archives your conversation and moves to the previous one.
] Archive and next Archives your conversation and moves to the next one.
z Undo Undoes your previous action, if possible (works for actions with an 'undo' link).
<Shift> + n Update current conversation Updates your current conversation when there are new messages.
q Move cursor to chat search Moves your cursor directly to the chat search box.
y Remove from Current View* Automatically removes the message or conversation from your current view.

  • From 'Inbox,' 'y' means Archive
  • From 'Starred,' 'y' means Unstar
  • From 'Trash,' 'y' means Move to inbox
  • From any label, 'y' means Remove the label

* 'y' has no effect if you're in 'Spam,' 'Sent,' or 'All Mail.'

. Show more actions Displays the 'More Actions' drop-down menu.
<Ctrl> + <Down arrow> Opens options in Chat
  • <Ctrl> + <Down arrow> moves from edit field in your chat window to select the 'Video and more' menu
  • Next, press <Tab> to select the emoticon menu
  • Press <Enter> to open the selected menu
? Show keyboard shortcuts help Displays the keyboard shortcuts help menu within any page you're on.
k

Move up a contact

Moves your cursor up in your contact list

j

Move down a contact

Moves your cursor down in your contact list

o or <Enter>

Open

Opens the contact with the cursor next to it.

u

Return to contact list view

Refreshes your page and returns you to the contact list.

e

Remove from Current Group

Removes selected contacts from the group currently being displayed.

x

Select contact

Checks and selects a contact so that you can change group membership or choose an action from the drop-down menu to apply to the contact.

<Esc>

Escape from input field

Removes the cursor from the current input

#

Delete

Deletes a contact permanently

l

Group membership

Opens the groups button to group contacts

z

Undo

Reverses your previous action, if possible (works for actions with an 'undo' link)

.

Show more actions

Opens the "More actions" drop-down menu.

Combo-keys – Use the following combinations of keys to navigate through Gmail.

Shortcut Key Definition Action
<Tab> then <Enter> Send message After composing your message, use this combination to send it automatically. (Supported in Internet Explorer and Firefox, on Windows.)
y then o Archive and next Archives your conversation and moves to the next one.
g then a Go to 'All Mail' Takes you to 'All Mail,' the storage site for all mail you've ever sent or received (and have not deleted).
g then s Go to 'Starred' Takes you to all conversations you have starred.
g then c Go to 'Contacts' Takes you to your Contacts list.
g then d Go to 'Drafts' Takes you to all drafts you have saved.
g then l Go to 'Label' Takes you to the search box with the "label:" operator filled in for you.
g then i Go to 'Inbox' Returns you to the inbox.
g then t Go to 'Sent Mail' Takes you to all mail you've sent.
* then a Select all Selects all mail.
* then n Select none Deselects all mail.
* then r Select read Selects all mail you've read.
* then u Select unread Selects all unread mail.
* then s Select starred Selects all starred mail.
* then t Select unstarred Selects all unstarred mail.

Tags

course of a day, drop-down menu, Gmail, Gmail Keyboard Shortcuts, google, google gmail, keyboard shortcut, keyboard shortcuts, mobile computing environment, mobile internet marketer, Tools


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