Email is a wonderful, efficient, and effective way to convey information. However, most people find they are inundated with emails throughout the day. Unfortunately, many people feel compelled to immediately deal with all emails, which can create a lack of structure, organization, and control of your time.
To help understand how dramatically emails impact our time, consider the following statistics:
- Companies in the United States will spend in excess of over $350,000 in email marketing in 2019 alone.
- Over half of the people surveyed in the United States report check their personal email account 10 or more times per day while at work.
- According to Radicati, a technology market research firm, the average business email account in the USA receives 126 emails per day.
- Email volume and traffic increases at a rate of about 5% per year and has done so since 2015.
- Spam Laws reports that there are about 14.5 billion spam messages sent per day around the world. This number is expected to reach 60 million by 2022.
- Approximately 60% of employees report they ignore or do not open specific emails at work to avoid communication from the HR department, managers, or supervisors.
If you are feeling overwhelmed with emails in your inbox, you are not alone. However, there are some techniques and strategies you can use to streamline your email inbox and limit the time you spend to only those emails of importance.
- Unsubscribe often – if you have subscribed to an email newsletter or advertising, and do not routinely purchase from the company or read the content, unsubscribe to the account. If you do need a product or resource, you can always go to the website or reconnect.
- Create a second account – use a primary email account for customers, business associates, and other important or VIP emails. Create a secondary account for all the social media, personal, or other types of non-essential emails. Set a block of time to check this secondary email each day, and limit your use to just that time. Be sure to turn off notifications for this secondary account.
- Opt for weekly or monthly newsletters or contact rather than daily – check your subscriptions and newsletters and make sure you are getting the level of contact from the company that meets your needs.
- Make your emails clear and concise – to avoid multiple emails to get information or to make a request, be sure to be clear, concise, and provide the information the person receiving the email needs. Provide specific deadlines or other timelines to further limit the need for multiple communication.
- Use your spam filters – be sure your spam filters are set up correctly. If you are not sure, contact your IT team and have them configure the email to avoid all the B2B promotions and sales emails.
- Consider moving to a collaborative software system – rather than email communication with others in the company or even with customers, consider a collaboration platform. People can talk in chat, leave messages, or simply upload information that others may require.
Keep in mind, a phone call or a face-to-face meeting can also cut down on emails on projects and with customers, plus it builds in rapport and relationship building that is impossible through typed communication.