Purge Your Inbox’s Unwanted Newsletters in One Clean Sweep

June 12, 2014

Here’s a taste of what you’d find if you quickly skimmed through my Gmail: emails from GrubHub peddling bacon-flavored floss; alumni newsletters from my graduate school; a weekly update from my gym; a barrage of emails from Crowdtilt (I donated to a friend’s campaign last month); and hundreds of newsletters I have no recollection of ever signing up for. None of it is essential or particularly relevant, but I’m too lazy to unsubscribe from each one.

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Sure, Gmail offers that handy “unsubscribe” button at the top of most newsletters. But that means you have to actually open the damn things just to click on it. Who wants (or has the time) to do that? If you want to quickly take care of all these inbox-clogging updates, there are two powerful services you should check out.

Unsubscriber works not only with Gmail but also with Yahoo, AOL, Outlook and iCloud. It’s dead simple to use. Once you sign up, it will create an “Unsubscribe” label in the left pane of your Gmail inbox (we tested it with Gmail, because let’s face it, who wants to use anything else?).

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To unsubscribe, simply drag and drop the offending emails onto the label. Unsubscriber will automatically notify the sender. And if they don’t unsubscribe you instantly, it will automatically route all future mail from the sender to the Unsubscribe label.

If you want more fine-grained control over your email subscriptions, head over to Unroll.Me. With a single click, UnRoll.Me will scan your Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Outlook, and iCloud inboxes and automatically identify subscriptions and newsletters. Once you choose which ones you want to keep from a handy list, you can unsubscribe from all the rest.

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But the service goes deeper. You can choose to “roll up” things like daily news subscriptions into a single daily digest. You can also choose what gets rolled up, sort subscriptions into categories, and decide when you receive your roll up. For instance, I get a daily news digest from The New York Times, Quartz, The Atlantic, and The Washington Post. With Unroll.Me, I can combine then all into a single roll up called “News” and choose to receive it at 7 a.m. everyday.

That’s another step closer to inbox zero.

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