How to use labels in Gmail
This tutorial will show you how to use labels in Gmail to organize your email conversations.
If you've seen the previous two tutorials, you should know what labels are and how to manage them, and how to manage conversations. If you haven't watched the previous tutorials, we recommend that you do so before proceeding with this one.
The Move to and Labels submenus in the actions menu, directly below, are the two ways you have to label conversations.
To use either, you must first select at least one conversation.
We'll start with the Labels submenu. Click this button to activate it.
Here, you can choose one or more of your existing labels to apply to the selected conversation(s). The search box may be useful if you have many labels.
You can also create new labels and go to the label management area using these links.
Let's label the selected conversation as both Business and Personal.
This conversation has now been labelled Business and Personal. You can see its labels here, next to its title.
If you watched the first tutorial on Labels, you will have seen how to change a label's color. Let's do that again now, to show you its usefulness.
Choose a color.
Notice -- the color has changed here, too.
Next, let's see a shortcut method for applying a single label.
Deselect this conversation, and select the two beneath that.
This time, instead of clicking on the checkbox next to the label, click on its name.
Now, let's see how Gmail treats a selection wherein not all conversations have the same labels.
Select this conversation.
Instead of showing a checkmark in the box next to each label, a line is displayed to let us know that some but not all of the conversations use this label.
Simply click the box as before to apply a label to all selected conversations...
...and the line becomes a checkmark.
The Move to feature is similar to the Labels feature, the difference being that Move to will remove the label we are currently viewing (Inbox) from the conversation and replace it with the one we choose.
To demonstrate, let's select the only conversation that hasn't been labelled yet. Click None.
Select this conversation.
Open Move to.
As you can see, this has the same basic layout as the Labels submenu. The checkboxes have been removed -- you can only move a conversation from one label to one other. We're also now able to move conversations to Spam and Trash (these weren't listed under Labels).
We'll move this conversation to Travel.
Another way to move a conversation is to drag it over to the label in the menu.
Click and drag this conversation over to Personal.
Let go of the mouse once the label is highlighted.
There is one last way to manage a conversation's labels. Open a conversation.
At the top of the conversation, you can see a list of labels with an X next to each.
Click a label's X to remove it from this conversation.
If instead you click on the label's name...
...you'll be taken to a list of all conversations that share that label.
This is the end of the tutorial. You now know how to use labels in Gmail.