Skip to content Skip to footer

Some filters to make the best of Gmail

Gmail filters header

The goal of this article is to simplify your life with some easy-to-implement Gmail filters that will help you gain more space, reduce clutter, and enhance productivity.

Below are examples of filter names we use in our training to help users understand the power of the Gmail search engine. Technically speaking, Google is a search engine, so why not leverage this capability?

To apply these commands/filters, type them into the search box in your Gmail and press ENTER. Click on the sliders next to the search box to create the filter, select the desired options, and click on “Create filter.” Now, a filter will be set up for these actions. It’s also possible to use these commands to search within Gmail.

If you want to view your filter, click on the β€œcog” icon in the top right corner, select β€œSee all settings,” and go to the β€œFilters” tab, or click the following link:

The “Old and Unimportant” Filter

Sometimes, you may want to delete emails that are older than a specific time because they are no longer needed, or you just want to keep your inbox clean.

Search for the following: older_than:<days>d. For example, to search for emails older than 30 days, you would enter: older_than:30d and press ENTER. The list will now show all messages older than 30 days. It’s possible to select all messages and perform actions on them such as “archive” or “set label.”

Social Media Notifications

To filter out different messages, you can use the following: from:<name>. For example, from:facebook. By adding OR, you can combine addresses into one string. For instance, you can use from:facebook OR from:twitter OR from:x OR from:instagram OR from:tiktok OR from:linkedin and add all these messages into one filter labeled β€œsocial media.”

Large Files Finder

If you want to clean up your inbox and get rid of large files in your Google Mail, you can use the following command: size:<number>MB. If you search using this command, all files larger than the specified amount will show. For example, size:10MB will show files bigger than 10 MB. It’s possible to delete these messages; remember that they will first stay in your trash, so remember to empty it.

Catch-All for Messages You Need to STAR

It’s possible that some messages need to be starred because they are important, such as bills or other significant documents. You can use the following command to search: * All messages from the domain will be shown. The star acts as a wildcard. It’s also possible to use this wildcard to search for partial email addresses or subjects. For example, if you’re looking for someone’s name and only know “ro,” you can use the star ro* to get all the messages that include “ro” and more in them.

Search for Unread Messages

If a message is unread and you’re unaware of it, it’s possible to filter these messages with the following search: label:unread. This will show all messages that you haven’t read.

For more information, you can view the following Google Support article about Gmail search operators: