According to The Radicati Group’s Email Statistics Report, 2015-2019, the number of email users worldwide, both consumer and business users, is expected to grow to more than 2.9 billion by year-end 2019 from 2015’s more than 2.6 billion.
The strength of email use can partly be predicated on the growth of mobile device connections.
The Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2015-2020 pegs the growth of global mobile devices and connections at more than half a billion, from 7.3 billion in 2014 to 7.9 billion in 2015.
Smartphones, which accounted for most of that growth, are expected to “cross four-fifths of mobile data traffic by 2020.”
The Emergence of Better Emailing via Apps and Add-Ons
With email as a primary tool in communicating with employees and clients alike, as the above statistics indicate, an overflowing inbox and volatile email security can be a huge waste of time and money.
But when the correct tools and strategies are put in place, the continuing growth of email use can definitely be an advantage for businesses.
So here are a few email apps and add-ons that can help you work more efficiently with email:
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Inbox Zero: SaneBox
SaneBox is an email management application designed to keep your inbox from overflowing. It automatically sorts your emails into several folders based on their importance.
By dragging an email to a folder named “SaneBlackHole,” all future emails from the sender directly go to the Trash folder, never to be heard from again, a feature particularly useful for persons you find obnoxious, or if you can’t be bothered at the moment to manually unsubscribe from a newsletter.
Least important emails are transferred from the inbox to a folder called “SaneLater.” Other folders are also available where messages are moved out of your inbox until tomorrow (“SaneTomorrow”) or next week (“SaneNextWeek”) so they don’t distract you from more pressing email tasks.
SaneBox works with your existing email service, be it on desktop or mobile, allowing you to use the software anywhere to clean up your inbox within minutes.
A 14-day trial of SaneBox is offered for free. There are paid plans you can subscribe to thereafter depending on your business needs.
Email Recall: Undo Send for Gmail
Undo Send is a standard feature of Gmail. It acts like a panic button, giving you a few seconds, a chance to save yourself from embarrassment, the loss of a possible partnership deal, or, worse, leakage of sensitive information to unauthorized recipients.
To activate Undo Send in the web-based Gmail, click on the gear icon, which is at the top right of your Gmail screen.
Select Settings from the drop-down menu. Under the General tab, check Enable Undo Send. You can choose between 5-, 10-, 20-, or 30-second cancellation periods to retract an email.
Don’t forget to click Save Changes at the bottom of the page.
To recall a message, click on Undo on the notification message that pops right up after you push the Send button.
This add-on is free and also available to Gmail for Android and iOS mobile users.
Email Security: SafeSend
The cost of data breach around the globe is escalating. According to IBM’s 2015 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis, for the 350 companies in 11 countries participating in their research, the average total cost of a data breach grew to $3.79 million from the previous year’s study of $3.52 million.
SafeSend, an email security solution, prevents accidental data disclosure through misdelivery of emails to unauthorized parties.
The application provides another layer of security specifically designed for outgoing emails, which it describes as the weak link in email security. SafeSend lets users review attachments and confirm external recipients before an email is sent out.
The tool is made for enterprise deployment. You can install it on your organization’s endpoints with your preferred settings, using group policy or on a per-user basis.
SafeSend is licensed according to the number of users and customizations you require. Additional pricing information can be obtained from their sales team.
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Contact Information: Rapportive
LinkedIn-owned Rapportive is a plug-in for Gmail which replaces the ads in Gmail's sidebar with your contacts’ information: photo, job title, location, and social media profiles.
This tool is useful for outreach and relationship building, and also for sourcing prospective talents that could best fit your company’s profile.
It is important to note that Rapportive only uses publicly available data. It’s free as a Firefox add-on or Chrome extension.
Email Scheduling: Boomerang
Boomerang is a Gmail plug-in that allows you to send or return messages even when you’re not online. It lets you schedule your emails, which means you can write an email now and Boomerang will send it tomorrow at noon, for example, while you’re having a luncheon meeting.
All you have to do is click the Send Later button and pick a date on the calendar.
Boomerang also helps keep your inbox clean by archiving less important emails until you actually need them. To do this, open an email and click on the Boomerang button to “snooze” the email and then choose when to bring it back to your inbox.
Other nifty features include read receipts, scheduling of recurring emails, automated email follow-up reminders, and response tracking.
A basic Boomerang subscription is free for life, and paid plans with more features and unlimited message credits start at $4.99 per month.
Boomerang can be used on mobile devices. Also, Boomerang for Outlook is available for Outlook users.
Email Reminders: Nudgemail
Nudgemail is an email reminder service that makes it easy for any email user to set up reminders.
For example, if you want to remind yourself to pick up office supplies tomorrow, email email@example.com and use the subject line “Tomorrow.”
Affix additional notes in the body of the message and the reminder, by default, will be sent to you the following day at exactly 6:30 a.m. (To change the default time for all reminders, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your desired time.)
Or if you’re scheduled for a meeting at 3:30 p.m., forward that message to email@example.com so you have ample time to prepare.
Nudgemail works with all the email clients on whatever device you use. The app is free, but if you’re a power user and would like to help ensure it continues to exist, Pay What You Want plans range from $5 to $20 per month.
Email Automation: Zapier
Zapier is technically not an email app. Instead, it’s a web-based service that can automate repetitive email workflows. It works quite similar to IFTTT but supports integration with more apps to simplify how work gets done.
The way Zapier works is it remembers the tasks you want to do over and over based on the integrations you created.
Called zaps, these integrations are then used as blueprints to create triggers and corresponding actions. You can choose which triggers and actions to pair.
- Post emails received by a custom email address to a Slack channel
- Email new SurveyMonkey responses to the email address of your choice
- Fetch new SMS messages from your Twilio number and send them to you via email
- Receive an email for every new Gravity Forms submission
- Copy Gmail attachments to Dropbox
Zapier also supports IMAP and SMTP integrations with other services.
Zapier subscriptions range from free to $125 per month, depending on the number of zaps and complexity of the features you need.
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Still the preferred communication tool in and outside the office, email has evolved to become more than just a channel to communicate with friends, family, and colleagues.
And by incorporating the appropriate apps and add-ons to your everyday email usage, you make emailing more manageable, safer, and downright more effective.