How To Create Gmail Shortcuts


Do you frequently access certain Gmail items? In this tech tip, learn how to create Gmail shortcuts and get to virtually anything in two clicks.

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Before Google retired the Labs area in Gmail, there was a feature referred to as Quick Links. Quick Links provided a fast and simple way to access locations in Gmail. It was a small menu area where you could setup custom links to frequently used areas.

Gmail Quick Links

I personally have over 100 email folders (in Gmail these are referred to as Labels). Before Quick Links, navigating to a folder such as “Vendors – Shutterstock” would take more than 30 mouse actions! Quick Links streamlines that to 1. With Quick Links I could click on a link titled “Vendors – Shutterstock” and it would take me directly to the “Vendors – Shutterstock” folder label.

In this tutorial, we will use a simple productivity hack to restore this convenient Quick Links functionality -and, without installing a browser extension or any additional software.

How To Create Gmail Shortcuts

A major benefit of Gmail comes from it being a web-based email client that works in the browser. Most of Gmail’s resources and settings are available from web address URLs that do not frequently change. For example, the inbox can be accessed using the URL: Sent Items can be accessed using And, the settings page to change Gmail keyboard shortcuts can be found at Because these URLs do not often change, it allows us to more conveniently access these locations in Gmail using bookmarks.

TIP: We use Google Chrome in the examples below, however the provided steps should work with any modern web browser.

1. Enable The Bookmarks Bar
To display the Bookmarks Bar in Google Chrome, click the Settings icon (3 dots) > click the “Bookmarks” menu item > click “Show bookmarks Bar”.
How To Show Bookmarks Bar In Google Chrome

2. Create A New Folder
TIP: Adding a folder is optional. You can create shortcuts to Gmail locations directly on the bookmarks bar. But, if you want access more than a few shortcuts, placing the shortcuts in a folder will save space and make them easier to navigate.

To create a folder, right-click on the bookmarks bar > select “Add folder…” > type a folder name such as “Gmail Links” > and click the “Save” button.
Right Click Bookmarks Bar

Name Gmail Links Folder

3. Navigate To A Location In Gmail You Would Like To Save
In this example we use the Sent Items folder. To access the Sent Items folder, click “Sent Items” in the Gmail navigation menu on the left-hand side.
Gmail Sent Items Folder

4. Drag The URL To The Folder
To create a shortcut, click and hold the lock icon that appears just before the web address URL > Drag the shortcut to the new folder on the bookmarks bar.
Drag Gmail Item To Bookmark Folder

5. Change The Name Of The Newly Created Shortcut
Click on the folder > right-click on the new shortcut > select Edit > type a desired name for the shortcut > click “Save” button.
Edit Shortcut Name For Gmail Item

Type New Name For Gmail Shortcut

6. Done!

This process can be repeated for any item or setting in Gmail you would like fast and simple access to. Just navigate to the location in Gmail and drag the web address URL from the address bar to your shortcut folder using the steps outlined above.

As a bonus, I’ve included a list of handy Gmail shortcuts below. You can use them by simply clicking the button once, holding and dragging them to your Gmail shortcut folder!






Mail Filters

Manage Labels

About Paul Luckett

Paul Luckett is the founder of, a resource dedicated to helping people get more done with less effort. The time he saves by leveraging technology is invested toward becoming a better husband, father and entrepreneur. Paul enjoys creating new things. You can read about his latest project here.

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