How to Take Back Control of Your Gmail

How to Take Back Control of Your Gmail

Uh-oh… Google’s done it again. If you’re using Gmail as many of us do, perhaps you’ve noticed some recent changes. Google recently introduced a significant change to Gmail with the introduction of what they call “tabs.” The idea behind tabs is that Google will sort your email for you and tell you which emails are important and which emails are not. The way they’ve done this is by splitting your email into three different tabs “Primary, Social, and Promotions”. If Gmail thinks an email is important, it will send it to the Primary tab, if it comes from a social network update they’ll put it in the Social tab, and if they think it’s an ad they’ll put it under Promotions.

Although Google touts tabs as a new feature the truth is – it’s another opportunity for Google to show you advertisements. If you click on the promotions tab you’ll see two advertisements always on the top of that tab that look like unread emails. No doubt people will click on these ads thinking they’re emails that need to be addressed. Pretty trick – huh?

The problem with tabs is they make the process of checking your email confusing and more time consuming. For example, I’ve seen several instances already where important emails like receipts and confirmations have gone to my promotions tab while I continue to see spammy type emails from people I’ve never heard of in my primary tab. This failure to properly sort my emails as resulted in me skimming through each tab trying to figure out whether an email is important or not. Essentially, this is the equivalent of checking three email boxes instead of one.

So here’s the good news about these new Gmail tabs. They can be totally disabled and you can return to your good old Gmail inbox by following these few simple steps.

Step 1: Click on the “Cog” icon toward the upper right of your Gmail account and choose “Settings” from the drop down menu.

Step 2: From the settings page click on the tab labeled “Inbox”.

Step 3.: Uncheck each of the boxes in the category section except the one labeled “Primary.” With all of the categories unchecked you can return to your inbox and see the tabs are gone and you’re back to your normal inbox and you’re once again back in control of your Gmail inbox.

This guest post is courtesy of Adam Barger, founder of WebStarts. Adam has more than a decade of experience with Internet marketing and entrepreneurship. In 2006, he founded WebStarts, a free website builder that has built and hosted more than three million websites. It offers its customers several online features, including domain names, customizable designs, search engine optimization and technical support. The newest feature of WebStarts is the Designer Platform,which helps other entrepreneurs start their own design and hosting businesses.


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