More than 1 billion people worldwide lean on Google’s email client for business and personal purposes, naturally this applies to the creative industry and all its niches. However, in a world where most are used to receiving multiple emails a day, staying organised and on top of your admin makes the world of a difference. 

Here are some Gmail tricks every creative freelancer, entrepreneur and business owner needs to know.

Inbox Organisation

We all hate when LinkedIn, ASOS or another platform you’re subscribed to fills out your inbox making you need to filter for essential threads. Labels are the best way to solve this issue and keep a freelancer’s inbox organised. They are essentially markers that you can use to filter and segregate your emails in different folders. So, if you want to keep all updates from LinkedIn in one folder, because you don’t want these updates overwhelming your inbox or wish to keep updates from a website you’ve subscribed to in another folder, labels are the way to go. 

Turn on Desktop Notifications

If you’re the type of freelancer who feels compelled to check their email every 5 minutes then desktop notifications will save your worries and waits. If you go to Gear-shaped button > settings > scroll down > Desktop notifications > New mail notifications on, every email you receive in your inbox will show up as a notification, irrespective of what you are doing at that point in time. Knowing that you’ll be notified when that important mail comes through will also enable better focus. 

The Schedule Button on Gmail

Completely free of charge, Gmail allows you to schedule emails to arrive in the receiver’s inboxes at the perfect time which is particularly useful for contacts in different time zones. If you click on the little arrow next to the Send box, click on Schedule Send and choose your desired time and date.


Boomerang is a third-party add-on for your Gmail that does all this and more. They have a 30-day free trial, so that’s a great way to get started and see how useful it might be for you. Boomerang is essentially a personal assistant that reminds you of emails you forgot to respond to, client emails you have to follow up on, or to simply schedule your cold pitch emails for times when they have a higher probability of getting read

Let the Recipient Know you Attached Files

Gmail’s smart technology recognises when you inform the recipient that you have attached files and therefore reminds you to attach said files when you click send if you have not already. This prevents you from ever coming across as disorganised and also keeps threads much shorter. So don’t forget to always mention “files attached”. 

A Good Automatic Holiday Response

Always keep your clients, and prospective clients, informed if you’d be unavailable for more than two days. The vacation responder feature can be accessed by clicking on the gear-shaped button on the top right of your gmail mailbox > Settings > Scroll down > Vacation responder > Turn vacation responder on. In the text box below add in text that informs those who contact you how long you’ll be away and how they can contact you if there’s an emergency.

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