Today we’re going to talk about something so not sexy: email. It’s a necessary evil of the 21st century. Something we seem to hang our lives on now, right? This past weekend, in my email newsletter, I talked a little about bad emails and how they can make our stomachs sink. You can’t avoid email, but you can make it a little more manageable if you know what to look for. Today let’s talk about why you need a solid email client.

Why You Need a Solid Email Client

How do you email?

Think about it, how do you email? How do you manage the influx of emails that come in? Are you an inbox zero gal or do you simply mark them as “read” and move along with life? Are you someone that wants to label all your emails or not?

When I was in politics, I lived in my inbox. And. I. Hated. It. Personally, I’m a “mark it as read” and move on person. I spend as little time in email as possible and if it’s something I really want to keep, I forward it to Evernote where it’ll stay, even if I do delete the email.

Though I will say, when I was working in politics, I labeled all my emails. Each client had a different colored label (we used G Suite for Work at my job). All those colors in my email system coordinated with a color in Todoist and in my Day Designer (yes, I’m a little OCD). After I left my job, I don’t think I checked my email for a week because I had to decompress from the constant information stream.

So when you begin to tackle your email, you need to know how you manage it. If you can’t recognize your own patterns and habits, you might be in trouble.

Where do you email?

It’s a safe bet to say that most people nowadays use Gmail, right? At least most millennials. I remember being at a job workshop a few months ago where someone said their son had told them to get a Gmail email because “only old people used AOL.”

While Gmail is an okay system, you have better options, for free!

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Inbox by Google

This is Gmail’s “little sister” and Google’s attempt to redo email, again. If you look at Inbox’s design, it’s much cleaner and slicker than Gmail’s. When I’m working online or expecting an email that will open in a browser, I always go to Inbox to read the email. The iOS app features the swipe feature to mark things as “read” and archive them. You can integrate this with your Google Calendar and Inbox will batch things together like upcoming bill emails or email confirmations from Amazon or iTunes.

Spark

I’ve looked a long time for an email platform that would work for me. I loved Mailbox back when it was around (still a little mad at Dropbox for nixing it). There are a few things I look for when looking for an email client to use, and Spark by Readdle has done more for me than anything other.

First, I need an email client that has both an app for Mac and for iOS, because I like having a unified process. Spark has both of these. I have it installed on my laptop, iPhone, and iPad.

I also love that I can host multiple email addresses without limit (I think the Gmail and Inbox by Google iOS apps limit you to three gmail addresses? At least it used to be that way). I currently have five email addresses set up in Spark.

Spark also gives me the ability to create custom signatures for each email address, which is awesome for me. I was able to HTML my photo in, too, so people know what I look like.

The best thing though about Spark? It’s bundling abilities. It bundles all your similar emails (think newsletters, notifications, personal), and with a click and a swipe, you can mark all those annoying emails as “read” or archive them to get to your inbox zero goals.

I’ve made a video tutorial showing you around Spark because it has become my favorite app for emails. This isn’t a sponsored post by any means, but since we all hate email, if we can find something that makes it a little less painful, it needs to be shared.