Top 8 Sending email options

May 20, 2020 | Outlook Hints and Tips

Most of the time when we create emails we type in the information, maybe add a file attachment, and then send across to the recipient. But what options are available that can help us, and the person we are sending to, before we ping that email across?  Here, my top 8 sending email options are listed for your use.

1. Change Importance

Sending an email with High Importance indicates to the recipient that this email should be looked at with a matter of urgency.  It shows up with a red exclamation mark in the list of emails.  Just be wary of sending too many high importance because your recipient may start to ignore it!  There is the option of also sending Low Importance which show up with a blue down arrow indicating that the priority of this email is lower than others.  Given most people struggle to keep on top of their emails at the best of times why would you ever push its importance even lower?!!!

2. Follow up

Flag emails you are sending for follow up with a date it needs to be completed with and it indicates to the recipient that some action needs to be taken.  The advantage over high priority is that a time frame is set for this.  If the recipient is using the To Do bar it will automatically be added to here and can also be seen in the Task section of Outlook along with any other flagged entries.

3. Use Voting Buttons

Do you have a question to ask your recipient?  Would you like them to choose from pre-selected options?  Do you want to be able to quickly collate the answers?  Then voting buttons are the way to go.  There are 3 pre-set options to use or a custom set of answers can be produced by separating each answer with a semi colon.  When you open the original sent item there is a Tracking icon where you can see the number of recipients with each response.

4. Request Delivery or read receipt

Do you want to know if an email has been delivered or opened?  That’s what these 2 options do.  Just be aware that the recipient can choose not to send a read receipt when they open the email leaving you none the wiser that the message has been read!

5. Save sent items to

All sent items are saved by default into the sent items folder but this can be adjusted on an email by email (or global) basis.  This would enable the sent items to be saved in the same folder as the messages received from a particular client for example.

6. Delay delivery

Deliveries can be delayed to a more convenient date and time.  This could be used to send out an email on Monday, but delaying until Friday, to remind an employee that there is a deadline for a piece of work coming up.  By creating this in advance it is less likely to be forgotten and can be done at a time more convenient to you.  The delayed email is stored in the outbox until the specified date and time and is sent as soon after that as possible.  Depending on your settings Outlook may need to be open for the send to happen.

7. Direct Replies to

Replies are normally directed back to the person who originally sent them.  If however you are sending an email, from your own account, on behalf of someone else you can get the reply sent to them instead. 

8. Expires after

An email can be set to expire after a certain date and time.  If the email hasn’t been opened by the recipient by this time it is recalled and the recipient will never know it has been in their inbox.  This is useful for time critical emails.  For example, if the recipient is away on holiday they do not really need to know about an adhoc meeting that occurred in their absence.  This gives them less emails to plough through on their return. 

NOTE: All options are available when composing an email.  Options 1 and 2 are available on the message tab, options 3 to 7 are available from the Options tab and option 8 is available from the Message options.


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