Before you hit the [Add to Chrome] button, watch this first! In this video, Scott Friesen takes a closer look at 5 free Gmail extensions that can save you time and help you become more productive. But before you start installing them, there are some things you need to know. He'll walk you through each extension, explaining how it works and what benefits it can bring to your workflow.
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There are so many different Gmail extensions to choose from, and over the years, I've recommended and tested out many of them. But today, I'm doing something a little different. I'm going to take a look at one, two, three, four, five different extensions, which I have never used before. We're going to take a look at how each might be able to help you and if it's worth adding it to your Gmail setup. Now, the first extension on our list is something called Dictation for Gmail. And by looking at the screenshot here, it looks like it's going to give us a new button so we can start dictating, we can just start to speak our emails here. It looks like it's also available in 50 plus languages. So let's go take a look. I'm back in my Gmail account, and I'm going to select Compose, and yes, it looks like we have this new microphone button and we've also have a dropdown for Languages. Let me just maximize this so we can take a better look. So let's see how this works. I'm going to start the microphone button here. Hi Jane, comma, I just wanted to follow up from our meeting last week, period. Are you able to join me and the client for a quick call later this afternoon, question mark? New paragraph. Let's keep in touch, so that we can finish this deal before the weekend, period. Wishing you all the best and talk to you very soon, period. All right, I'm going to hit the Toggle button here. And so far, not too bad. I was a little surprised at where it jumped the cursor down. You'll notice that these two lines here are actually being generated from the email signature and for some reason, it came down below that. It didn't put it up above where the cursor was originally, it came down below. Now, I could just delete that and move everything back up, so that looks a bit more tidy there, but I was impressed that it did respond to periods, question mark. I told it to come down here for a new paragraph. And from a spelling and dictation point of view, this looks fairly clean. Now, let's go and reply to a message just to see if it responds any differently. So here I am within a reply, and let's see if that cursor jumps anywhere else. Hi Scott, comma, thank you so much for passing along this additional information, period. I look forward to meeting with you early next week, period. So I've got no issue with the dictation and how quickly and accurately it is, but yes, once again, it seems to automatically jump that cursor down, which is interesting. I don't know if that's a bug. I don't know if that's a piece of behavior that is intended here, but that is Dictation for Gmail. So a quick and easy way for you to dictate your messages. Would love to hear someone else's feedback as to some of the other languages in here and if it's as accurate in their language as well. Next, let's take a look at an extension called Simplify Gmail. And I must admit, this opening screenshot that it has on the extension page is rather puzzling to me because it looks vacant. That's a little boat here in the ocean. I'm not exactly sure what that's supposed to represent, but if I go over, I believe the idea here is to remove some of the buttons and maybe some of the other options that we typically see within our Gmail inbox. So just before turning it on, here is my standard Gmail inbox, and you'll notice I have the extension installed. It's currently off, so you can easily toggle this on or off. Let's see the difference. I'm going to say toggle on, and it has certainly removed some things, and it seems to have condensed my messages here in the middle. Probably the most noticeable is that that Google sidebar has now been disappeared. It is no longer here on the right-hand side. But I almost have to go back and forth to see the differences. So it's certainly condensing the messages, making it a bit more narrower, the logo has gone. Let's take a look at this left-hand side. What else changes there? Yeah, it just sort of removes that big Compose button, which I don't think is maybe the most helpful. I would imagine I would want the Compose button there. But even if I open up one of these messages, I guess it's brought everything in a little bit. Maybe it's a little more focused, a little bit easier to read. If I click up here to my Simplify Gmail options, you can see that there's a number of things in which we can toggle. One of the ones that stood out to me is the message font. So this is something that you can't control natively within Gmail. So Gmail's default is a 13 size, but we could punch that up. So if I wanted something like 19, for example, so that might make it that much easier for me to read, right, depending on my eyesight or visibility. So that might be helpful. You can also change the actual font itself so you don't have to stay with Gmail's default, but there's an awful lot of options here. So the conversation list here, you can see, is changing the list width, which might be helpful because if I turn this off again, you'll notice everything is always stretched to the full, right? Even if we go to our inbox, everything from the sender here to the left, all the way to my Snooze button and the date on the right-hand side depending on your screen size, that's an awful lot of real estate. So maybe that is going to be helpful for some of you. Let me turn it back on here to go to this default view. Now, there's far too many options to cover in this video. You can see they break it down by conversation, by message, by compose, by navigation, and even chat and some of the other features as well. It looks like you could toggle off some of the shortcut keys as well. So an interesting one here, I'm not sure if it's made as big of a difference as I thought. I'm not sure if you can hide some of your labels on the left-hand side as well, but at the same time, I'm not sure how helpful or productive that would be as well. So maybe if you're looking for some increased font sizes, maybe if you're looking to minimize and just go to the icons here at the top, that might be helpful for you. But at first glance, I'm not sure if Simplify Gmail is worth installing. Now, just before we get to our next extension, I want to thank today's sponsor, SaneBox. SaneBox is not an extension, but it is a complete way to manage your entire inbox. SaneBox actually uses artificial intelligence to get to know your behavior, so you can separate those distractions and unwanted emails from everything else, so you can focus on what's most important to you. SaneBox actually uses something called Trainable Folders, meaning that the more that you use it, the more that it gets to know what should be kept in your inbox and what can be saved for a later time. In particular, I've been enjoying SaneBox's latest feature called Email Deep Clean. As a Gmail user, you know how important it is to stay within your storage limits, and Email Deep Clean allows you to quickly and easily identify which messages are taking up the most storage or which senders you no longer want to hear from. To learn more and to start your free trial with SaneBox, go to sanebox.com/simpletivity1. Next on our list, we have an extension called Streak Email Tracking for Gmail. Now, you'll find an awful lot of email tracking extensions here within the Chrome Store. And pretty straightforward, at least by these screenshots here, is that there's going to be some type of indicator where we can turn email tracking on or off. And then we should get some type of notice when someone has opened or viewed that particular email. So I'm going to come here into Gmail. Streak is now turned on. It looks like they have both a Basic Free plan but also a Pro plan. And I'm going to hit Compose. Let's open this up a little bit further. And down below, you can see there's three different orange icons. Now, this first one is called Add to Box, and I was playing around with it a little bit earlier. It looks like this is something CRM-related. I'm not going to go into those details because this is why I installed, and this is really what this extension is advertised for. So Streak view and link tracking is on. It's on, I guess, by default for all of our emails. And let's put together a test email here. So I've just created a very quick test email here because when it comes to email tracking, you want to strike when the fire is hot. And let's say in this example, I want to see if this person has taken a look at the proposal and I really want to know when they open up this email because maybe I can follow up with a phone call just a few minutes after or send another email shortly after I know when I'm confident that they have seen, laid eyes on this email. So the tracking is already turned on. It looks like I could toggle it, I could turn it off at any time if I want to, but let's turn it back on, and I'm going to hit Send. The only other thing we will notice is that it has created some additional folders or additional options under our Send or Sent area here. So under All Tracked Emails, it's going to take a look at the different emails here. Now, I happened to have used the exact same subject line for a previous test. This is one that I sent, and you'll notice it's telling me it was viewed seven minutes ago, but the one above, the one that I just sent, has that little cross through the eye, meaning that it has not been viewed yet. So let me jump into my test email account. And here is that email that we just sent. I'm going to click on it. So it has now been opened. I'm going to jump back to my inbox and I'm going to pretend that I'm just going through my other emails for the day. And let's see what happens. Now, we can anticipate that there's going to be a short delay as information is passed between accounts and along the web, but I should receive some type of notification. I believe there should be some type of pop-up letting me know. So nothing yet, it's taking a few seconds here. I would imagine that we should be notified within about two minutes. If it's going to take more than two minutes to let us know when something has been opened, then I'm not sure how valuable that service is. Under All Tracked Emails, it's still showing that that one has not been opened. But again, let's let it do its thing, and I'm just going to wait here until we actually see the the popup. Okay, so now, even though I allowed my notifications, my desktop notifications to be turned on, I never actually did see a pop-up notification here within my screen, but you will notice that it has tracked that one. It's showing me that it was opened two minutes ago here by the indicator on the right-hand side. So when you open the email, you'll notice that there's this little green icon. And if you hover over it, it will give us this little dialog. So it's telling us that there has been one view and the latest view was three minutes ago. It's even going to tell us where that view happened and approximately at one time. So although it didn't give me a push notification or something visual on screen, it is letting me know that it has been viewed. I do appreciate the fact that it creates this other area. Rather than just seeing everything that has been sent, you can see all of your tracked emails here and see which ones have been viewed and which ones are still pending. I imagine we can choose the default for this if we don't want it to be on at all times. Let me just go ahead and delete that. If I select Compose, it looks like that is going to be on again. If I click on Streak Basic and if I click on Settings, here you can see we can choose if we want to make that enabled or disabled by default. So all in all, it does work. It's a fairly simple tool. Some of the other features such as the CRM is not what I'm looking for, but if you're looking for a basic and an efficient email tracking tool, this might be the right one for you. The next extension on our list is called Gmail Sender Icons. And it looks like this is all about more easily identifying who has sent those emails. It looks like it's going to add both a logo and the name of that particular sender, so you can more quickly and easily identify who has sent that message. So I've installed the extension, and here I am back in my inbox. And you can see right here to the left of the subject line, it has added a logo or it looks like it's the favicon. This is the icon that is associated with that domain and the name of the domain as well. So it's awfully quick and easy for me to see that this is from LastPass and it's the only one here from LastPass. And if I scroll down, here's from Todoist, here's from Jotform. Now, there's a bunch in here where if it's not coming from perhaps a marketing or an official domain, it may be just saying something like gmail.com and have a picture of the world. Now, looking here at some of the options, it is pretty straightforward. You can either choose to show both the domain icons and the text, like what we see here, or maybe I don't want to see the text. So if I toggle this off and then just choose to refresh my screen, now you can see we are only seeing the icons. And of course, I could just choose to show the text and not the icons if I wanted to as well. Let me refresh that once again. Now, if I click on the message itself, it doesn't look like there's anything added here so we're only going to see that in the Inbox view. And this is not clickable, either. So for example, if I click on this LastPass, it's going to be the exact same as opening up the email. So it's not like it's giving me any additional functionality, but it is essentially doing exactly what it promises. It's just making it a little bit easier by adding these sender icons. Now, if we do start to add some labels to our messages here, those labels are always going to be to the right of it. So the labels are still going to easily stand out. But if you're wanting to weed out maybe some of those marketing emails or from some of those key senders this might be a good extension to check out. Now, the last extension on our list might work very well with the previous one where we're wanting to identify things which we would like to unsubscribe. This one is called Trimbox, and it promises to unsubscribe from emails with just one click. And at first glance, it looks like it's going to add a little scissor icon besides some of our messages, so we can unsubscribe without even having to open up those messages. So now that I've got the Trimbox extension installed, let's take a look. So you can see here in my inbox, we have several of our messages with this little icon beside it. Now it's very, very visible, which is what I like. It's very quick for me to identify what might be a marketing email or a newsletter if I want to unsubscribe. And if I hover over it, we actually don't click on it immediately, it looks like. If we hover over it, it's giving us three options. Do we want to unsubscribe? Do we want to delete all emails? Now, this, I think, is both very helpful, but you might also want to be very careful with this because it's going to delete all of the emails from the sender. And then, I guess, if we want to keep this off of the list if we don't want this little icon beside it, we could choose this last option. I'm actually going to test this out first. If I select that, okay, now that little icon is gone, so, and it's given me a little bit of a message there at the bottom letting me know. But this one up here, if I hover over this and I'm going to say Unsubscribe, it's going to unsubscribe from that. And then it keeps asking me delete all emails from this mailing list. I guess that's always the secondary option. Here you can see that that icon has now changed, so I no longer have the option to unsubscribe. I could either unblock the sender or I still have the option to delete all emails. So this could be a very helpful extension. Maybe something you don't need all the time, but maybe you just enable it from time to time when you need it. If I click on the icon here, you can see that I've unsubscribed from one list and deleted zero emails. Unlock unlimited access to all features. So I'm not sure of what all of the features are. I'm not sure if there's a limitation in terms of how often I can use this, but this would certainly be a quick and easy way for you to unsubscribe from an awful lot of emails. Now, if you enjoy today's video and are looking for even more features to get the most out of Gmail, be sure to click on this video next where I take a look at seven missing features within Gmail and the extensions, which you can use to improve your experience. Thank you so much for watching. And remember, being productive does not need to be difficult. In fact, it's very simple.
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