Gmail’s Changes: Annoying or Helpful?

Girl emailWhenever I’m talking to someone about what is or isn’t working in their day/business, usually the topic of email will come up. And most of the time it’s mentioned with an exasperated sigh.

I get it, we all get a lot of email and some businesses have more of it than others do. But regardless of where you fall on the spectrum, email can be overwhelming.

So, when I heard Google was rolling out some changes to their email (gmail and apps users), I was intrigued. (Gmail added 3-5 tabs to the main inbox that they will sort your emails into. Primary, Social and Promotions are the three tabs everyone seems to be getting. I also see options for Updates and Forums tabs.)

What I wasn’t prepared for was the rash of emails my inbox received from people/businesses I get newsletters from letting me know that Gmail is now deciding which emails actually show up in people’s inboxes.

Now, I admit it, I subscribe to ALOT of newsletters, but I was still surprised when over the course of 24 hours I received 7 emails on the subject from various people/businesses I’m subscribed to. Since then, about two days, it has slowed down – only 3 more.

Most of them had the tone of “what is Gmail doing!?” and “this will negatively affect your business!” However, a couple had a more laid-back tone of, “hey, Gmail is rolling out some changes, just wanted you to know.” And all had instructions for how to (1) put their emails in the “Primary” tab or (2) remove the tabs all together.

In reading around the internet the general opinion seems to be “GAH! Changes! BOOO…” and “why don’t people just set up their own filters for this stuff?”

And, frankly, when I received the changes, I DID NOT like it. But, I didn’t like it because I’ve set up filters, and a separate email address, to basically serve the same function. Having Gmail filter on top of my filters was annoying.

That said, ALOT of the entrepreneur’s I work with and talk to don’t want to figure out how to set up a filter. And now they can easily ‘teach’ Gmail which emails belong where with a couple of simple clicks.

And for those of us who don’t want the changes, we can very easily turn the categories off.

Sounds like a win to me!

Have you been affected by Gmail’s changes?
Either way, what are your thoughts on this?
Share your opinions in the comments below!

PS. There’s a great article over on mashable.com that outlines the changes, how to move emails between tabs and disable the changes all together. Check it out here!

Image courtesy of arztsamui / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

5 thoughts on “Gmail’s Changes: Annoying or Helpful?

  1. Hi Evie!

    A friend and co-worker just yesterday suggested I get a gmail account because some of what she sends me gets returned back to her from my aol one.
    Successful people that I know have gmail, plus it’s free!
    I’m not sure why I hesitate to use gmail, but for some reason I am still hesitating especially now after your email! Also gmail seems easier to ” hack” into so that is a reason too not to utilize. I wonder if I should set up gmail for my business though, since my professional friend advised me to? What do you think, Evie? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kristine!

      I think the changes Gmail just rolled out will be helpful to many people. It will allow users who aren’t interested in setting up their own filters easily categorize their emails. Making it easier for them to see the more important business or personal emails among the ads, promotions, group updates or whatever else they get.

      Also, I understand your concern about being “hacked.” One of the things you can do with a Gmail account is set up a 2-step verification process. That means when you log in from a new location, it texts or leaves you a voicemail with a pin to enter after you’ve successfully entered your password. You can set that location to be remembered for 30 days before it will ask you again.

      The 2-step verification process could have prevented all of the stories I’ve read about people’s Gmail accounts being hacked. Plus it would have alerted them that someone was trying to gain access to their account.

      Personally, I use Gmail for my personal accounts and use Google Apps for my professional email (meaning I check the email address on my business card via Gmail). I find easy and convenient to use and manage.

      Let me know if you have any other questions!

  2. The gmail changes didn’t phase me for more than 30 seconds. What?? Oh!! And I made a few changes with a few clicks (including moving the One Insight Closer newsletter to my primary box).

    But I was kind of surprised at the amount of conversation this is generating. I went to a networking event on Friday and promised one of the coaches there I’d send her information on this, and ended up writing an entire blog post to describe everything.

    BUT HEY — anything that gives an idea for a blog article is good stuff :).
    Mary Wu recently posted..Q&A The Gmail changes

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