Outlook has many useful features and there are a couple tucked away that you may not know about. They're really ways to help you Organize your email. But since I've used that title previously for a different type of email organizing (see: Organizing Outlook Mail), I figured I'd catch your attention by highlighting my favorite feature...Using Color.
But let's start at the beginning and go through each of these options. In Outlook, click Tools > Organize. This will open a window above your current list of emails. There are three main features in this group: 1) Using Folders, 2) Using Colors, and 3) Using Views.
(Note! Older versions of Outlook also accessed the Junk folder options through this window. Newer versions access the Junk options through the Action menu.)
When it comes to moving your email around, Outlook gives you many ways to handle this chore. You can select the email you want to move and just drag it off to another folder. You can right click an email and choose Move to Folder, then select the folder in which to move it. And you can set a Rule that moves email into specific folders automatically. But if that wasn't enough, you can also use the Organize window's Using Folders feature to move things around.
If you have a folder selected when you open this window, it will be the default location. But you can click the drop down to choose any folder you want.
Likewise, if you have a piece of email highlighted in the current folder, that will be the default item that will be moved. However, you can also selectively choose as many emails as you need to move...as a group. To select a contiguous group, click to select the first one, hold down the Shift key and select the last item in the group. All items from the first to the last click will be selected.
To select noncontiguous items, you can use the Ctrl key. Hold it down and you can selectively click to highlight or click again to toggle the highlight off to deselect a previously selected item. Once satisfied with the selected group, click the Move button in the Organize window and all the selected items will be moved to the selected folder.
If you're like me and have many folders, you might find this method easier than doing a lot of scrolling up and down. Use whatever method you find most convenient.
I live in Outlook most days. I have several ways to alert me about different types of email. Some emails are moved off to separate folders so I can review them when I have time...such as incoming posts from my many free support groups. If a consulting request comes in or if someone purchases one of my training courses, those are very important, so they display a sound and a special message pops up.
There are other important emails that I don't want to miss; but if I move them off to a special folder, I might forget about them. And some are very important for me to recognize right away; but they arrive frequently, so a pop-up notice would make me crazy, as well as lessen the effect of having that feature being applied to vital client email. So I like to use the color feature to help me more easily notice these frequent/important emails.
As you can see below, I've set various colors for different senders. Whenever I get an idea that I don't want to forget, I quickly send myself an email to make sure I remember the item and deal with it at a later time. Emails I send to myself display in purple. Greg's email is very important to me, but we email each other often so a pop-up would become annoying. Instead, I mark his emails blue so I can easily see them. I have several Google alerts set to notify me when we are mentioned on the web. Those become green. And my daily news alerts get teal.
Yes, I have several other color settings in place and it can start to look like a technicolor yawn all over my inbox<g>...but I'm used to the color scheme, so I'm able to easily pick out what's waiting for me to handle in the daily mass of email.
To apply a color setting to a particular email, you simply need to select a piece of email from a particular person and then choose what setting and color you want applied to that sender. Just remember to click the Apply Color button once you're done making your choices to set the rule in place.
If you're working on a project, you may want to set special colors for email messages from certain colleagues while you're working on that project. But when the project is done, you probably won't want that person's email to remain colored. Just go through the same routine as when applying color, but when it comes to choosing a Color, click on the item named Auto. That will return that person's email to the automatic (or default) color scheme that you have applied to that folder, which is most likely still the default black.
You can click the main View menu and you'll instantly have a few dozen ways to view your email. Or you can go further and create your own customize views. But this can be a faster way to get to the view you need, especially if you add the Organize icon to your toolbar so you can quickly click to open the Organize window, then choose a view, such as seeing all unread mail in a folder.
Again, there are many ways to get to the views you want, this is just one more way to do it that can be quick and easy to understand.
Yes, when it comes to computers, there are many ways to accomplish the same goal. Choose the method that works best for you