Last week’s blog post Outlook Users want Help Finding Emails… not Filing Emails had many users writing to us in disagreement. This week I want to look at how you can get the benefits of folders using tags… without the heavy maintenance requirements of actually using folders.
Before I start…
There are some users for whom folder based system works very well. Those users may want to read the rest of this post but you shouldn’t make changes unless you feel that your current system is either 1) not working or 2) takes too much effort. Your email organization system is meant to serve you… if you’re happy with what you’re using then please don’t change.
Now let’s start…
There has been a strong trend away from organization information of all kinds into folders. Instead the new trend is to use Search tools and to compliment this using tags.
This can be seen in Gmail which has implemented labels (which are essentially the same as tags) as well as most digital photo management applications, notes applications such as EverNote and much more.
But there are some advantages of using folders over search and tags (until now).
What are the advantages of Folders that users want?
- It is easy to see all the things that are important to you simply by looking at your list of folders i.e. your list of folders shows you your projects.
- Folders make it easy to see a lot of related information easily and cleanly in one place. You open a folder and everything for a project is right there… you don’t have to manually sort out stuff that doesn’t belong.
- It takes more work but is easier to ensure that information is saved in the right place.. as long as you have the discipline to do the filing. Some methods of tagging make it too easy to tag an email with the wrong tag and therefore lose the email.
Can Email Tags provide the same benefits of folders?
We have just put the latest version of Email Tags for Outlook on our website. In the rest of this post, we want to show you very quickly how the three advantages of folders listed above can easily be achieved with Email Tags.
- The Email Tags user interface has been updated to easily show you a list of your tags.
- The Search screen in Email Tags makes it easy to see all your tags for a particular project.. just as if your emails were in a folder.
- Email Tags has a number of features built into it that makes it almost impossible to incorrectly tag an email.
a. Email Tags has built in artificial intelligence that will suggest tags to you based on the contents of the email
b. You can always click Show All Tags and then pick from your full list of tags
c. Start typing in the Tags text box and Email Tags will show you a list of matching tags to pick from thereby eliminating most common typing mistakes.
As you can see in the Search screen above, the screen generally shows you your more recently used tags.
This means that you can see your “current projects” easily. Tags can also be contained of multiple words so you can have tags with customer names, project names… whatever you want.
You can also click on the Show All Tags link on the screen to see a list of all your tags as shown below:
The advantage is that it takes much less effort to maintain tags than a massive folder tree.
The latest version of Email Tags is available on our website for you to try and download right now. We also have a discount of $10 for a few days if you decide to purchase the software soon.
NOTE: While we have the latest version of the software online already, the video and pictures on the website are still for the old version. We’re working on updating those in the next few days.
What do you think of the new version. Try it out and let us know by leaving a comment below or send a email to email@example.com