7 Advanced Microsoft Outlook Tips and Tricks to Be a Pro User

Microsoft Outlook has more to offer than meets the eye. Find out how you can make the most of it by using these advanced Outlook tips and tricks.

You probably open Outlook and use some of its nifty features like flags, categorize, and archive on a daily basis. While these features already make it easy to manage your emails, there are other Outlook tools available that can take your email organization to the next level.

In this post, we’ll tell you seven advanced Outlook tips and tricks that you may want to check out the next time you open your inbox.

  • Answer Repetitive Emails With Quick Parts

    Do you find yourself typing the same email content again and again? Probably your workmates ask the same question frequently, or you always make the same announcement every month. In that case, Quick Parts will be your best friend.

    A collection of reusable pieces of content, Quick Parts, is one of the best ways to boost your workflow in Outlook. You can access this feature from the Insert tab every time you reply to (or create a new) email.

    To add a new snippet to Quick Parts, simply open a new email, type your message or phrase, and highlight the text. Then, go to Insert > Quick Parts > Save Selection to Quick Part Gallery. You can start using this snippet whenever you please

  • Reuse Frequent Messages With Email Template

    Similar to Quick Parts, email templates in Outlook help you save time by reusing previously composing messages. You no longer have to type the same email again, as you just need to pull up your premade email template. Its advantage over Quick Parts is that you can fill in the subject and recipients, too, not just the body.

    To create an email template, simply create a new email and type your message. You can choose to leave the recipients, and subject lines blank. Then, go to File > Save As. Save the email as an Outlook Template in the default folder.

    To use the template, click on New Items from your Home tab. Select More Items > Choose Form, and change the Look In field to User Templates in File System. There, you can pick an email template you’ve previously created.

  • Simplify Frequent Actions With Quick Steps

    Quick Steps are heaven-sent for people who constantly do the same series of actions to emails they receive. For instance, when you get an urgent email from a colleague after work hours, you flag them, change the status to high importance, and then send a reply saying, “I’ll get back to you tomorrow.”

    This can be too tedious if you don’t like spending more than 30 seconds attending to emails like these. So instead of doing the steps above manually, you can just automate your action with Quick Steps.

    You can easily find this feature on the Home tab of your Outlook app. There are already default Quick Steps available here, such as “Done” that mark the email as complete, move it to a folder, and mark it as read. “To Manager” forwards the email to your manager; and “Reply & Delete” sends a reply and deletes the original message. However, you can also customize your own series of actions.

  • Create Rules for Better Email Management

    Rules are somewhat similar to Quick Steps, as they also let you handle incoming (and outgoing) emails in a specific way. For instance, Rules can move emails from John Doe to the Archive folder and mark them as read. You can also use Rules to automatically CC or BCC yourself in Outlook.

    However, unlike Quick Steps, where you need to choose a certain Quick Step before it can be applied to a message, Rules are automatic. As soon as you receive an email that fits the conditions you set in the rule, the actions you’ve selected will automatically apply. This makes organizing your inbox a lot less stressful. You can create your own rule by navigating to Home > Rule > Create Rule.

  • Send Automatic Out-Of-Office Replies While You’re Away

    Unless you are a super workaholic and have a fear of missing out, you probably don’t like checking your emails while you’re on vacation. However, you also don’t like leaving your workmates and clients hanging. That’s why it’s important to set Automatic Replies until you’re back in work mode.

    Automatic Replies are exactly what the name implies. When it’s turned on for a specific duration, people who email you during that timeframe will automatically receive a reply with the message you’ve composed in your Automatic Replies setting. To create one, navigate to File > Info > Automatic Replies.

  • Sort Easily Through Your Inbox With Clean Up

    The last thing you want to see after coming back from vacation is an inbox full of hundreds of redundant emails. While you can’t prevent this from happening, there is one way you can make Outlook less distracting: the Clean Up feature.

    This deletes redundant messages from email threads, so you can read fewer messages but still understand the entire conversation.

    If you’re worried that this feature might delete important emails, you can always head to the Deleted Items folder, where the duplicated messages are moved. To use Clean Up, go to the Home tab and click Clean Up in the Delete section.

  • Use Conditional Formatting to Highlight Important Messages

    If you’re someone who receives hundreds of emails in a day, it’s easy to lose track of the most important ones, like those from your boss or your client. This is where conditional formatting comes into play.

    This Outlook feature lets you customize certain emails to make them pop out of your inbox. For instance, you can create a conditional format to change the font of your boss’ emails to Comic Sans. You can also make it such that any messages with “Meeting” in the subject line become a vibrant shade of pink. You can find the conditional formatting settings in View > View Settings.

These seven advanced tips and tricks barely scratch the surface of Outlook’s features. The more you use the app, the more you’ll surely discover new and useful features that can help supercharge your email management.

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