How 10 Gmail Keyboard Shortcuts Save 10 Hours of Your Weekly Work

Are you an IT professional who wades through a hectic schedule on daily basis and wish you had more time to handle and communicate via email? Well, assuming that you use Gmail to communicate with your clients, colleagues and customers a lot, there are 10 keyboard short-cuts that could save you up to 10 hours of your weekly work schedule.

Some people loathe keyboard short-cuts purely for the fact that it is cumbersome for them to learn to master it. They would rather use the mouse to compose, send, reply, delete and archive their emails easily. However, as a matter of fact, using only 10 Gmail keyboard shortcuts can actually reduce your time on Gmail by as much as 60%.

While moving your mouse around renders you ergonomically challenged, it also eats into your daily work schedule when you have a dozen of things apart from email communication priorities.

So, what’s the way out?

Well, just learn to use 10 Gmail Keyboard Short-cuts in the next 10 minutes and you could be on your way of saving around 10 hours (that’s a full work-day) on a weekly basis.

Before you begin to use those keyboard short-cuts, the first and foremost thing to do is go to the Mail Settings and turn the “Keyboard Shortcuts” option  on (as shown in the image below). This will activate the keyboard shortcuts on your Gmail.

Step #1: Click on the cogwheel on the right hand upper corner of your gmail inbox panel and then click on “Settings” option from the drop-down menu.

Google Keyboard Shortcuts Settings

Step #2: Look for Keyboard Shortcuts option and then click on the Keyboard shortcuts on button.

Google Keyboard Shortcuts On


Once the keyboard shortcuts are turned on, you can use the following shortcuts to use Gmail features quickly and more efficiently.

Let’s take a look at some of more commonly used Gmail features and how you can use them with a few keyword shortcuts.

Compose an Email – Press C
This is the first thing you do when you want to write an email. Instead using a mouse, just press C on your keyboard and a draft will open up for you in a jiffy.

Send an Email – Press Tab + Enter
Once you’re done with writing the email and ready to send it off, press the Tab key and hit the Enter key. You’re email will be on its way to the recipient before you know it. If you want to attach any document, there are shortcuts available for that too. However, let’s just learn the basics at the moment.

Select an Email – Press J or K
When you open your Gmail, you will see the curser (a black arrow mark sign) resting on the topmost email by default. You can move it upward and downward depending on where it is. For instance, you want to read any specific email which is located somewhere in the middle, you can press J to move downward. Likewise, if you want to move upward, press K. This is how you can select a specific email conversation.

How Do You Want to React?

I Want to Read the Email – Press “Enter” or O
If you want to read a specific email conversation, just press the “Enter” key and the email conversation will open up for you. You can achieve the same result by pressing “O” key as well.

Close the Email (To Go Back to Inbox) – Press U
When you’re done reading an email and wan to go back to the inbox, just press U and it will take you back to the inbox to read more emails.

Reply to the Email – Press R
If you want to reply to an email, just press R and write your reply to them. If you are reading a group email and want to send a reply to all recipients in the conversation, just press A. (Press Tab + Enter to send the email as discussed earlier)

Forward the Email – Press F
If you want to forward an email to another person, then press F and type the name of the recipient. (Press Tab + Enter to send the email as discussed earlier)

Delete the Email – Press Shift + 3
If you want to delete an email conversation, just press Shift key and press 3. In some keyboards, you can simply press the # key if there’s a dedicated key for this symbol.

Send the Email to Spam – Press Shift +1
Sometimes you get unwanted spam messages that clutter your email inbox. In order to send a spam email, just press the Shift key and press 1. In some keyboards, you can simply press the ! key if there’s a dedicated key for this symbol.

Archive the Email – Press Y or E
When you’re done with a conversation and simply want to archive it, press either Y or E and the email conversation will move to the archive.

It might look like learning these keyboard shortcuts are cumbersome but in reality, you might be wasting a whole lot of time by using your mouse instead. Business IT professionals who use Gmail a lot for their email communications can benefit from learning these keyboard shortcuts. Since most of the above actions can be performed by just hitting one key, it’s much easier to learn to use them. Hope this post will be useful for you and save your time on a daily basis.