Are You Using Gmail Aliases to Label Your Mail?


gmail-aliasYou’d think that my full-time transition to Gmail (s GOOG) in 2007 would have me using every trick in the book to manage my mail. Nope. Getting caught up in the grind with gadgets coming and going, I haven’t found the time to exploit all of Gmail’s little tips and tricks. That changes today for two reasons: I’m going to make the time and I have a good launching pad with this timely post from Web Worker Daily.

I knew about Gmail aliases: these are the custom email addresses you can create yourself. For example, my personal Gmail address is But will also come to my Inbox also. That “+abc” can be anything of my choosing. But I never thought to combine those aliases with Gmail’s filtering system.

Jenny suggests just that in the WWD post. She uses a +p alias and a filter to apply a “Pictures” label, which is a perfect example for me as I often email pics from my phone for blog purposes. The opportunities are pretty endless when combining aliases with filters and I plan to start taking advantage of them today. Got any other tips for me?


Mitchell Allen

I just came here from a Google search, after having read the WWD article. Since I would want to use the alias for spammy newsletters, I’ll probably go with the Google Applications extra emails. Thanks, Scott!

However, I was really pleased to see two other helpful comments:

AndyW mentions normalized addresses (extra dots)
Kevin linked to saved searches! I miss that feature from Thunderbird.

Thanks to everyone!





You may already know about this, but my suggestion would be to check out Quick Links as a way to save Searches. It could be a useful alternative to using Filters.

e.g. you could save a search of “Phone pics in the last 7 days”.

I find them quite useful and a little more flexible than Filters and Labels.

You’ll find Quick Links as a feature in the Labs settings part of Gmail (next to the “Settings” link). There are tonnes of other useful labls features, e.g. “Mark as read”, “send and archive”.



Here is a tip – don’t use Gmail or any other Google services


i don’t use aliases that way… just my extra gmail accts ;) Google apps gives me enough accts to use one for spam, a few for work… etc.


Spam. Instead of using another email address i just add +(whatever) if I need to use my address for a one time thing. Then after I’m done i set a filter to skip inbox/delete all mail incoming to that address…

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