Common Misconceptions About SEO

As e-commerce continues to grow in importance and an increasing number of companies wade into the digital world, securing high rankings on search engines is more and more important to get your business seen by potential customers. At the same time that search engines gain prominence as a key generator/source of site traffic, they also frequently make changes to their ranking algorithms. And with that, many misconceptions have emerged about how search engines operate.

Search engines tend to provide vague outlines into what contributes to a site’s page rank, leaving people to try and fill in the lines or make educated assumptions on how to boost rankings. In my time as a digital marketer, I have come across many people making incorrect assumptions and are frustrated about what is involved with SEO. SEO doesn’t need to be confusing – no matter how vague search engines can be – I’ll try to clarify some of these more common misconceptions.

Keywords and links are all that matter

Yes, keywords and links play a big role in SEO, but they are not the only pieces to the puzzle. As the algorithms used by search engines become more complex, everything from social vitality of content to whether or not a website is optimized for mobile traffic can influence a search rank. Googles recent Hummingbird update ensures that searches are executed based on the full context of a query, not just single keywords. It also provides results based on the geo-location of a searcher.

Backlinks from the comments sections of blogs and forums are good links

In the past when you visited a blog or industry forum, it was common for people to drop links to their websites in their responses or include links as part of their profile. I thought this was finally debunked for good until while visiting some of my favorite blogs and in comments section of our own blog, I still see people dropping backlinks. Even though these types of posts may generate more traffic they are not going to boost rankings. Many blogs have “no follow” instructions built into their comments sections, telling search engines to ignore all links within the comments section. In fact, search engines can even raise a red flag if they see a good portion of your backlinks coming from comments sections.

Everything Google is good for your rankings

Somewhere during the evolution of SEO, someone started to say that using any of Google’s products improve rankings. Thankfully it never progressed to the point where somebody tried to say that using Google Translate will help with page rankings. However, there are many pieces of the Google pie that have been misconstrued as helpful to search ranking optimization efforts, most commonly with Google Authorship and +1’s from Google+.

The +1 confusion began when sites with a high number of +1’s resulted in very high search rankings within Google. Unfortunately, this was a misinterpretation of several studies, which showed that pages with highly-ranked content also had a high number of +1’s. So SEO marketers started correlating that +1’s contributed to good rankings; fortunately, Google has since clarified this and stated that this is not true. +1’s are good because they help raise awareness of content, but they do not directly contribute to search rankings.

Authorship helps Google give proper credit to the author of content, which doesn’t boost a page’s ranking. What it does do is put a face to the name behind the content which helps the content stand out more. The picture increases the click-through rate of your page by building trust from your readers as you’re not just another random person writing content on the internet.

Only Google matters

I covered this topic last week in a separate post. Yes, Google is the dominant global search engine with two-thirds of all searches running through them. In 2013, there were over 3 trillion searches performed online which means that 1 trillion of these were performed on other search engines like Bing, Yahoo!,, etc. So while optimizing Google should be your first priority, also remember to allocate some time to learning how to optimize for the other search engines.

Paid search boosts your organic results

There is a conspiracy theory floating around that says search engines reward those who advertise with them with higher organic search rankings. The reality is that all major search engines worry about their online reputation in the same way that we do. They have set up very specific rules and organization policies to prevent “pay for sway” scenarios. If a search engine violated this type of policy, their business might be irreparably damaged. Google has come out and said they do not engage in this sort of practice, and there is no proof that PPC positively affects organic search rankings.

Hopefully this clears up some common misconceptions about SEO and helps you determine where to focus your SEO efforts. Just remember that search engine algorithms are always changing which means the rules will also change. Are there any other questions or concerns you have regarding SEO? Let us know in the comments section below!

How to Market Your Brand Like a Kardashian

The ninth season of E!’s “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” starts Sunday night and the previews promise a krazy season (See what I did there? I’m feeling more like a Kardashian already!)

Bikini Marketers should be getting their Kardashian on too, but not for the reasons you might think. Marketers can learn quite a few lessons from Kourtney, Kim and Khloe, but they have nothing to do with wearing on-trend outfits or perfecting the art of contouring.

Here are six marketing tips learned from the Kardashians.

Flaunt what you’ve got These girls have never been shy about showing off what they’ve got. Kim, Kourtney, Khloe and younger sister Kylie Jenner have all posed nude for various magazines, advertisements and organizations. Even self-proclaimed momager Kris has shown some serious skin.

The key for marketers to successfully show off their, for lack of a better word, assets is to perfect the art of the humble brag. Share a client success story on social media or write a blog post to a recent award win. Just remember that only 25 percent of your content should actually be about you. The rest should be unbranded.

Diversify your offerings Perhaps one of the best lessons from the Kardashians is their diverse empire. Their reality show has grown into brands in clothing, make-up, perfume, nail polish, book deals and even a short stint in the credit card business. Rather than worrying about overexposing themselves, these girls continue looking for business ventures in new industries.

Marketers should think this way as well. Specializing in one field of marketing, say, SEO, seriously impacts your ability to grow your client base. Instead, hire employees who are skilled in all areas of your industry. Building a team with diverse talents will allow you to increase your offerings without sacrificing quality of work.

Find something that makes your brand unique For the Kardashians, this is their signature “K” alliteration. From their clothing line, the Kardashian Kollection, to their previously mentioned Kardashian Kard, this family has basically invented an entire new dictionary.

Whether you share the Kardashians’ affinity for alliteration or not, you should find ways to differentiate your business from your competitors. Do your employees participate in an industry-related charity event regularly? Does your CEO personally work on every client account? Find your something special and put it at the forefront of your marketing efforts. If done correctly, it will become as valuable as your logo.

Be prepared to defend yourself The Kardashians are no stranger to tabloids, rumors and, to be blunt, open disgust. It seems every week there’s a new negative story about them. From Kim’s short-lived marriage and eyebrow waxing accusations to speculation that underage Kendall and Kylie partied at a club, the girls aren’t afraid to defend themselves when needed.

If a disgruntled employee attacks you on social media or a competitor starts a not-so-subtle smear campaign, you’ve got to stand up for yourself. The key is to do so in a way that gets your point across without sounding petty. When in doubt, run your statement by your company’s decision makers or your lawyer.

There’s power in numbers Perhaps one of the reasons the Kardashians have been so successful is simply because there are so many of them. When one does something, they all come out to support the venture.

Little sisters Kendall and Kylie participated in a photo shoot for Robert Kardashian’s sock line. When Kris hosted her talk show in 2013, Khloe, Kim, her then-boyfriend Kanye West and Kourtney’s long-term boyfriend Scott Disick all appeared on the show.

You can use this same strategy to build relationships and thought leadership in your company and community. Reach out to other businesses in your area to cross-promote and attend networking events regularly. Grow a strong support base and you’ll set yourself up for success.

Get Social The Kardashians have basically taken over the social media world. On Twitter, the Kardashian-Jenner clan (minus Bruce) have nearly 60 million followers combined, and Kylie, Khloe, Kendall and Kim have four of the top 10 most followed Instagram accounts, ranking 10th, 9th, 6th and 3rd, respectively.

You should aim for this kind of domination in your industry as well. Set some time aside to evaluate your social media strategy. The most important factors to a strong social media presence are posting regular, quality content and interacting with your followers. Master these skills and, who knows, you might one day see the same social success as the Kardashians.


Author: Taylon Chandler

3 Steps to a Better Relationship with Your Customers

For any brand, it’s important to keep customers happy. In today’s world of digital connectivity, an unhappy customer can do more damage than ever before. But at the same time, a happy customer can help you grow faster, by spreading the word and referring many more customers to you.

Too often, customer satisfaction is something no one wants to deal with. If customers are not happy, we blame poor service. If customers are happy, we credit amazing products.

Customer happiness needs to be at the top of everyone’s priority list, no matter what department you’re in. And it’s up to top management to build a culture based around the customer’s happiness.

Here are three steps any company can take to create a better relationship with customers:

1. Answer their questions.

When they call, pick up. When they email, respond. When they walk in, greet them and see what they’re looking for. When calls and emails go unanswered, when questions get lost in the shuffle, people get irritated. When a customer spends time and money on your products, they expect you to be there if they need you.

2. Ask them what they want.

Include your customers in future decisions. You can do this with surveys about new products or features. You can talk to your customers in stores and online and ask them for suggestions. You can find out what your competitors are doing that you’re not, and begin to learn more about what your customer is looking for from you.

3. Ask them what they thought.

Don’t let a purchase be the last interaction your customers have with you. Follow up with them to make sure they got what they expected. See if there is anything else that they need from you. Find out if they have any questions you can answer proactively. This gives you a chance to establish your brand as caring and customer focused, and you can solve any potential problems before they arise.

Not hard, right? These are three simple things any company can implement. But it’s a culture that focuses energies and efforts onto the customer that is needed before change can truly be made to stick.

15 Tips to Finding the Unicorn of Work Life Balance

Not feeling like a Rock Star at the office? You may be experiencing the effects of kryptonite, or a lack of work life balance. Oh the drudgery of trying to manage the office, your personal business and family. It may seem like you are circus clown juggling every facet of life, dropping a few balls, missing appointments, forgetting what needs to be done, and working at home during family time. It’s time to remove those silly big red shoes and make time for a better balanced life.

A loud scream is acceptable at this moment. Life can be so overwhelming and exhausting. I know the feeling.

  • On average, how many hours per day do you spend on personal business that may divert your time, energy and focus away from your daily business operations?
  • Do you ever feel stressed trying to balance your personal and professional life?
  • Do you wish you had more time in your day to squeeze it all in?
  • Does your work load make its way to your family time?
  • Are you always connected and listening for notifications?

Work life balance seems to be an elusive term these days as the line between professional and personal time seems to have become blurred with the advancement of technology and always being turned on. Some employers have come to expect 24/7 availability from their staff, which leaves little downtime for personal business and a life. There needs to be a better separation, more defined lines of business and pleasure before we completely tune out all that really matters in life and living to the fullest.

WLB can mean different things to different people. It could represent more of a “fit” versus a balance, but no matter how you want to define it or enjoy it, it is off kilter. You need to learn how to determine the different roles, times, priorities and activities and their importance in your life. How can you learn to co-exist with all of your daily responsibilities in a harmonious manner to ensure your greatest contentment?

“Organisations across the globe continue to ask their employees to ‘do more with less’, leading to increasing dissatisfaction with work-life balance. Tactical solutions like telecommuting options or flexible work schedules will not be enough to successfully address these mounting concerns. To address work-life balance issues and lessen the workloads of top employees, organizations need to develop fundamental solutions to enable their current workforces and think strategically about which key roles need to be supplemented from the outside.” Mark Royal, Hay Group.

Achieving or maintaining a healthy work life balance is a key driver for employees. They want to be able to have a life outside of the office and be able to continue to support their personal and family needs. In a Hay Group study, comprised of 5 million employees in more than 400 companies across 65 countries, more than 39% of the respondents felt they did NOT have a happy work life balance. This dissatisfaction or feeling of lack increases stress, reduces productivity, distresses family life, can create health issues in addition to increasing depression, employee burnout and turnover. It is a big problem that needs to be addressed.

Navigate Your Work Life Balance

  1. Work life balance should be a priority for you, your staff and your family.
  2. Schedule breaks throughout the day to refresh and energize.
  3. Set your priorities at the end of the day.
  4. Create your space and time boundaries for work and play.
  5. Schedule “ME” time.
  6. Address deadlines and deliverables with clients and employees.
  7. Understand that a balance for you may not be the same for others.
  8. Commit to work hours and time off.
  9. When you are with your family and friends, turn off notifications and be present in the moment.
  10. Don’t sweat the small stuff.
  11. Pick your battles.
  12. MAKE time to exercise.
  13. Take a vacation.
  14. Learn to say no. It’s okay.
  15. Utilize “Corporate/Personal Concierge” services (just ask Ace)

Whether you are an entrepreneur or an employee, establishing a healthy balance or “fit” is important for your physical and emotional well-being. You are always on and giving it your all, but eventually your engine can give out without the proper fuel and recovery time. If you don’t make yourself a priority, then other parts of your life will begin to suffer. Don’t wait until you are exhausted and completely burnt out. Take the time NOW to access your goals and what is most important.

“How do we reject the expectations foisted on us to excel at everything in work and in life, to drive ourselves to the limit, while we try to be happy, healthy human beings?” – Tanya Selvaratnam

What steps are you ready to take for a happier and healthier balance in your life?

If you want to test out our personal assistant services, we invite you to reach out via our Contact Us page. Let’s get a little balance back in your life.

Quotes About Failure

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Thomas Edison, American inventor

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
Winston Churchill, British politician

“Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.”
Salvador Dalí, Spanish painter

“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
Maya Angelou, American author

“Go on failing. Go on. Only next time, try to fail better.”
Samuel Beckett, Irish novelist

“It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.”
Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States

This Is Why You’re Late All The Time

How did it get to be OK for people to be late for everything?

It’s simply that some people no longer even pretend that they think your time is as important as theirs. And technology makes it worse. It seems texting or emailing that you are late somehow means you are no longer late. Rubbish. You are rude. And inconsiderate.

But while the behavior of keeping someone waiting on you is, decidedly, rude, it doesn’t necessarily mean your tardy friend is doing it on purpose, or that he or she is a rude, inconsiderate person — in fact, there are several psychological and perhaps even physiological components that can contribute to being perpetually late.

“Lateness is really a commonly misunderstood problem,” says Diana DeLonzor, author of Never Be Late Again, who has conducted her own research on the perpetually tardy. “Yes, it’s a rude act, but I’ve interviewed hundreds of people and the vast majority of late people really dislike being late, they try to be on time, but this is something that has plagued them throughout their lives. Telling a chronic late person to be on time is like telling a dieter, ‘Don’t eat so much.'”

And it’s often a problem that begins early. “[For many] it started in childhood, and they’re late for not only things that have to do with other people, but things that will only hurt themselves,” DeLonzor tells HuffPost. They’ll show up to the gym, for instance, 10 minutes before it closes, or they’ll be late for job interviews.

The issue might have something to do with fundamental differences in the way we think, according to DeLonzor. In her own research, she’s found that late-arrivers tend to actually perceive time differently than their punctual peers. She wrote in her book (as reprinted on her website):

Part of my research included a test to measure the differences in how timely and late people perceive the passage of time. The test I devised is a simple one you can try yourself. Choose three or four pages in a book, mark the time, and start reading. Stop reading when you think ninety seconds have elapsed, then check your watch to see how accurate you were. I found that early birds, almost without fail, stopped reading before ninety ­seconds had passed, while lateniks put their books down well ­after the ninety-second mark.The researchers at Cleveland State University also included a time perception test in their study, this time using stop-watches. Interestingly, their results were similar to mine, with late people consistently underestimating the passage of time.


Psychological components can also contribute to chronic lateness. In a 1990s study she led for San Francisco State University, DeLonzor identified links between chronic lateness and certain personality characteristics, including anxiety, low self-control and a tendency toward thrill-seeking. And through her work, she has identified seven different kinds of late people (though most offenders are usually a combination of more than one type). She calls the first group, and one of the most common, “the deadliners”:

“One of the things I found is that some people were subconsciously drawn to the adrenaline rush of that last minute sprint to the finish line … They have a hard time motivating themselves without that looming deadline, without that crisis on the horizon,” she says. “Then, as they realize there’s no way they’re going to make it on time, that positive feeling turns to dread. Then they start beating themselves up.”

The second category of late people is what DeLonzor has dubbed “the producer.” “Those are people who consistently over-schedule their days,” she says. “[The producer] thinks she can go for a run, clean the house, put in a load of laundry, pick up the dry cleaning, take a shower and get the kids dropped off at school in an hour.”

The third group is what she calls “absent minded professors,” which are easily distracted people who might even have a diagnosable condition in the form of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. “When they head out the door, they might notice the drapes are crooked and they run over and fix the drapes. On the way back they’ll get distracted by seeing the computer is on and they go to turn it off but have to surf the web first,” she says. “They have a hard time getting from point a to point be without getting distracted by c, d and e.”

A fourth, less common sub-type, is what DeLonzor calls the “rebel,” or a person who actually enjoys being late, because they like the idea of knowing other people are waiting for them. “They’re maybe people who are insecure and having people wait for them makes them feel important,” she says. While the first three categories are the most common, the other groups include “the rationalizer,” who doesn’t fully admit the problem and always blames it on external factors (a traffic jam!), “the indulger,” who struggles with self control (I don’t feel like going!) and “the evader,” who keeps trying to perfect a situation before leaving the house (one more outfit option!).

But just because people don’t want to or mean to be late, doesn’t mean they can’t work to regain control over their punctuality. A few simple tips can help:

1. Reevaluate how long your routines really take. Late people tend to remember the one time they got ready in 20 minutes or the one time they got to work in seven, instead of realizing that most days it takes them 40 minutes or 15. DeLonzor recommends writing down your daily habits and then estimating how long you think it takes you to do each one — then spend a week or so writing down how long each thing actually takes. “Late people tend to engage in magical thinking,” she says. It’s time to relearn how to tell time.

2. Change your thoughts, not just your behavior. Reframing the way you think about punctuality can be an effective cognitive trick. Instead of stressing about it, sit down with a pen and paper (when you’re not in a rush) and jot down all the positives that come with being on time, suggests Teri Bourdeau, Ph.D., a clinical associate professor of behavioral sciences at Oklahoma State University. You might write, for example, that being timely will make you look more responsible, or that it will stir up less conflict with co-workers. Think about the things that are going to motivate you to be on time, and remember them the next time you’re trying to cram in too much before a deadline.

3. Get down with downtime. Eternally tardy people, particularly those who fall into the “producer” category described above, often like to pack in as many activities as possible to maximize productivity, which can make any extra waiting time uncomfortable. One option for coping is to plan out an activity you can do when spare minutes creep up, whether it’s catching up on work emails on your iPad or calling a parent you haven’t had a chance to catch up with. But another option is to reframe downtime as something to enjoy between all the rushing — luxury time instead of wasted time. “A big part of the enjoyment of life is just sitting back and talking to the person next to you or looking at the sky or smelling roses,” DeLonzor says.

4. Budget your time differently. Timely people will give themselves round numbers to get somewhere — 30 minutes, for instance. The chronically late, on the other hand, often budget exact times, like 23 minutes, to get somewhere, a habit that DeLonzor calls “split second timing,” which doesn’t account for the inevitable delay factors that pop up. “If you’re exactly on time, that means you engaged in split second timing,” she says. “You should not consider yourself on time unless you’re 15 minutes early.”

5. Reschedule your day. “Habits tend to be reflexive patterns of behavior and what we need to do is change that pattern,” Bourdeau says. Start writing appointments down 30 minutes before they actually happen, which will help you start planning before the last second. And reevaluate your to-do list — chances are, you’re simply not going to get everything done. Bourdeau suggests splitting things into categories: what you absolutely must do, and what has a negotiable timeline. Try crossing a few of the latter off the list, or move them to a time when you’re less harried. And be sure to schedule in downtime every day so you know when it’s time to relax, and when it’s time to get moving.

8 Things Really Efficient People Do

Most everyone would like to be more efficient. Just think, you would spend less time doing the things that you don’t enjoy and more on the things that bring satisfaction, happiness and profit. Some people are actually very adept at efficiency.  They manage every manageable moment so they have more time for themselves to do the things they love. Here are eight techniques efficient people use to gain that freedom.

1. Stop Multitasking

Many people fool themselves into thinking they are good at multitasking. But actually very few can solidly focus on more than 1 or two tasks, particularly if they require focus and depth.  They fool themselves into believing they are getting more done when in reality they are accomplishing less and the quality of the work is poor. Really efficient people know that concentrated effort with few distractions leads to better work product in faster times. Otherwise the work may not be up to par, which means wasting even more time and energy going back to fix the mistakes.

2. Delegate

So much productivity is lost when people take on more than they can accomplish. Don’t be inspired by CEOs and leaders who overload their schedules and burn the midnight oil. Really efficient people are extremely good at delegating tasks to others who will perform them better. When you know how to break down a task and empower others to contribute effort, you can choose the tasks most suited for you and crank through them in record time without distraction.

3. Use Appropriate Communication

Poor communication is a huge time-waster. A fast email transmitting bad instructions or an offensive attitude can end up adding many unnecessary hours to a project. The masters of efficiency take a little extra time to think through their communication in the beginning. They consider their objectives when deciding to get on the phone. They craft their emails with purpose using the exact language necessary to get the desired effect.  It takes a little more time at the beginning but can actually shave days from a project.

4. Apply Structure to the Schedule

With all the available scheduling and productivity tools you would think more people would feel they have a handle on their schedule. And yet often people feel their schedule drives them instead of the other way around. Efficiency fanatics create standard routines in their schedule so they can achieve a disciplined approach and be ready for the important events. The more you control the calendar, the easier it is to make room for the unexpected.

5. Give Everything a Proper Place

A lot of time is wasted chasing down lost items. Keys, pens and clothing hunts can cause distraction and frustration, especially when you have something important to do or somewhere important to be. People get really efficient from being organized. Establish a home for all the items you have.  Factories that practice LEAN create common homes for necessary tools of the trade. You can do the same. Organize clothes, papers and electronics in a way that you can easily find what you are looking for.  It may take you a few extra minutes to put things away but you’ll save a ton of time and irritation from having to search for what’s important.

6. Time Activities

Do you really know how much time you spend productively versus how much time you waste? I often know that I am talking on the phone with someone who takes efficiency seriously because they tell me when the call is almost over. Efficient people set a time for each of their tasks and work to keep the schedule. Try logging your time on conversations and activities for a week.  Then spend the next week setting specific times for similar activities and work to reduce the times with similar output.  You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the gains.

7. Commit to Downtime

Tired and overworked people don’t perform well. People pleasers will sacrifice their own downtime thinking they are benefitting others, but in truth they detract from productivity. Really efficient people make sure they get rest and recuperation so they can perform at their peak. Since one amazing employee can do the work of three average employees, best to let the team rest up and be top performers.

8. Plan Projects

Effort is often wasted when people don’t have a clear path to success. Impatience is the direct enemy of efficiency. Really efficient people know they must take the time to research and break down a project into basic steps in order to achieve success consistently. Yes, planning takes a little time. But considering the challenges, process and responsibilities in advance will make for clear direction with the team. With good communication everyone can move confidently and efficiently to achieve all the objectives in record time.

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10 Tools to Organise Your E-mail

In an increasingly digital world, email has become the primary mode of communication for doing business. That little unopened letter symbol, the blinking red light, the “ding!” of a new message has become the string to our puppet, a Pavlov’s bell, if you will, bringing us to immediate attention, dozens, and sometimes, hundreds of times each day. Emails plague our inboxes making it difficult to stay on top of conversations and keep organized, which, in turn, increases stress levels and reduces productivity. In my own personal quest to conquer the email beast, I’ve come across some great tools that have proved helpful. Below are 10  tips to help increase email productivity and maintain sanity.


Many times, emails are planned and drafted long before they’re sent. Boomerang allows emails to be scheduled and sent at a later point in time, providing users ultimate control over their communication. Specifically for Gmail, Boomerang is a free Firefox and Chrome plug in that gives email communication an added strategic advantage.


Gmail has a browser add-on, Rapportive, that turns the ad-filled sidebar into something incredibly beneficial. It allows information about the email sender to appear including links to his or her profile, recent tweets and photos that would otherwise take valuable time to locate. This add-on is free and available for Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari.


Mailstrom is a free tool enabling users to sort, delete and unsubscribe from messages in bulk. Emails can be filed by sender, subject, social or shopping categories to keep clutter away from important messages. Mailstrom works with Gmail, Outlook and other services that support Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP).

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Keeping an up to date Google contacts list is key in order to maintain relationships. WriteThat.Name is a tool that automatically keeps your contacts up to date by running the signature of the email against preexisting contacts to make sure that they don’t need to be updated. The sending/receiving email process runs flawlessly by eliminating time spent manually updating or tracking down contact information.


Waiting for an urgent email to come in can cause worry and distraction while trying to focus on other tasks. AwayFind is a service that sends notices when you get emails through SMS text, Twitter, IM tools like Gtalk and Yahoo, or through an iPhone and Android app. AwayFind filters can be managed according to message priority so only emails of importance render notifications. This service is free for one Gmail and services that support IMAP.


Sorting through dozens of trivial emails to find the important one takes a lot of time and energy. SaneBox offers a solution to this problem by creating folders for messages of top importance to look at later, for news and a black hole for spam. In just a few clicks, SaneBox automatically organizes email into these folders without missing a single shoe sale list serve. This email filtration system is sure to save time and increase peace of mind.

Automation Tools

Emails are sent every day with the same “thank you,” “congratulations” or other repetitive phrases. There are many automation tools such as Gmail’s Canned Responses, AutoHotKey, and Lifehacker’s Texter to help with this. Services such as these are able to automate sentences commonly used to save you time, effort and spelling errors.

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ActiveInbox is a Gmail add-on that enables users to categorize emails into actionable tasks, projects and goals while enabling a notes section to each email. Allowing categorization of emails into prioritized actions organizes Gmail inboxes in a way that can help manage tasks on a to-do list. This helpful tool is free for Firefox and Chrome and works seamlessly with Gmail.


With such a large number of messages infiltrating businesses each day, it’s easy to forget to follow up on emails that require a non-immediate response. NudgeMail is a service that reminds recipients to follow-up or respond to an email at just the right time. It works with all email providers and simply requires forwarding the email to addresses like “” or “” By using NudgeMail there will never be a forgotten follow-up email again.


Grexit creates a central space where team members can access emails that contain information pertaining to everyone. Unlike Google Drive, Grexit allows sharing without ever leaving your inbox. Explaining and typing up assignment instructions or new policies is extremely time consuming when repeated on an individual basis. Grexit is a great tool available for Google Apps only.

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Outlook has a great add-on called Xobini that creates a profile sidebar for senders like Rapportive, as well as updating the user’s address book like WriteThat.Name and enhancing the Outlook search. Available in both free and pro versions, Xobini is a powerful contact information tool to give the user everything he or she need to know about the sender.

Keeping an organized inbox is key to an efficient and productive team. Try these tips out to minimize time wasted sifting through emails while creating a more structured  system to improve daily communication. Have you tried any of these tools?