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How to create a Gmail Label from an existing email and why you should

If you're not using the Gmail label feature, you're missing out on an automated email tagging system that can make your inbox a bit easier to navigate and more efficient to use.
Written by Jack Wallen, Contributing Writer on
Reviewed by Kelsey Adams
Gmail Unsubscribe label applied to many emails
June Wan/ZDNET

I get far too many emails on a daily basis, most of which are spam and can be completely disregarded. But within all those annoying missives there are plenty of important communications to sift through, some that need immediate attention.

Problem is, those important emails can easily get lost in the deluge of nonsense. Aside from unsubscribing from marketing email lists, what can you do? 

Well, Gmail does have a very powerful built-in feature that you can make use of to cut through the noise and get to what's important. The Label system makes it very easy to tag emails such that they are easier to find, filter, and never miss. 

I'm going to show you how to create a Gmail label from an existing email, so you don't have to worry about missing another email from that sender in the constant stream of noise. 

Also: How to enable UWB on Android and why you should

With that said, let's get to it.

Requirements

The only things you'll need for this are a valid Gmail account and a web browser. That's it. Let's create your first label.

How to create a Gmail label from an existing email

1. Log in to Gmail

The first thing you must do is open your web browser and point it to http://mail.google.com. Once you've logged in to your account, you can create a label.

2. Locate the email in question

Scroll through your inbox and locate an email from which you'll create a label. Choose an email from a sender whose emails you don't want to miss. Once you've found the email in question, right-click it and select Label As > Create New.

The Gmail Create New entry in the right-click menu.

Creating a new label from an existing email.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

3. Create your new label

In the resulting pop-up, give the new label a name. If you want the label to appear as a child of another label (say you want to have different labels for contacts at the same business), click Nest Label Under, click the drop-down, and select the parent label that will house the new label. When you finish, click Create and the label is done. 

Now every email that comes in from that particular sender address will have that label applied.

The Gmail label creator popup.

You can create the new label on its own or as a nested label.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

How to add color to the label

You can also add a color to a label to make it even easier to see. To do this, locate the label under the Labels section (under your Inbox), hover your cursor over the label, click the three-dot menu button, click Label color, and then select a color for the label.

The Gmail label color picker.

Adding a color to a label.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

A cool trick

Let's say you've created a label for email that comes from me, Jack Wallen, and you want to quickly locate those emails. The easy way would be to look at the list of labels and click the one you created, which will display all emails that have been tagged with that label.

One cool little trick, however, is to use the search tool. So searching for all emails that have been tagged with a label from my name would be as easy as typing label:jack-wallen or label:"jack wallen" in the search field. Every email tagged with that label will appear. 

Also: How to change your default Gmail inbox to suit your workflow

Congratulations, you've just made those important emails even easier to find. I highly recommend you create labels for everyone you receive emails from that you never want to miss. This is a small feature that can have a big positive effect on your Gmail experience.

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