3 Gmail Labs To Boost Your Productivity

An often overlooked feature of Gmail, Gmail Labs, offers several "experimental features" that can add functionality to your in-browser Gmail experience. A handful of these Labs are outdated, some downright superfluous, but three in particular have really been a welcomed productivity boost to me so I felt inclined to share. You can quickly add new Labs by clicking on the gear icon in the upper right-hand corner of your Gmail tab and clicking on Settings, then Labs.

1. Multiple Inboxes

My favorite of the bunch, enabling "Multiple Inboxes" will allow you to add up to six more inboxes to your main screen and position them wherever you please. The content that these extra inboxes show is configured by you, meaning you can have one show e-mails containing certain text or ones tagged with a certain label.

Google Labs - Multiple Inboxes


2. Right-Side Chat

If you archive messages with labels in Gmail, you are likely aware of the how many can actually show on-screen at once without having to click "More". In order to take back more screen real estate and keep those precious labels all showing up together, I recommend enabling the "Right-side chat" Labs. This moves chat over to the right side of Gmail and gives you a lot of extra room on the left for all of your labels, saving precious seconds in navigation.

Google Labs - Right-side Chat


3. Unread Message Icon

Despite it's usefulness, I do not like Gmail Desktop Notifications. When you're in the thick of something and the creative juices are flowing, an annoying "New Mail" popup can kill your concentration. Here's where "Unread Message Icon" comes in. Just enable this Gmail Labs feature and the favicon in your browser tab will now display a tiny, unobtrusive number relative to how many unread e-mails are in your inbox. Clean and simple.

Google Labs - Unread Message Icon