Useful Gmail Shortcut Keys to Improve Your Email Checking Experience

While most of us are used to moving mouse and clicking around the screen, sometime things can be done faster if you use the preset shortcut keys. Similarly, for those who spent a lot of time in your Gmail, the following shortcut keys will definitely be of great use to you.

Shortcut KeyDefinitionAction
cComposeAllows you to compose a new message. <Shift> + c allows you to compose a message in a new window.
/SearchPuts your cursor in the search box.
kMove to newer conversationOpens or moves your cursor to a more recent conversation. You can hit <Enter> to expand a conversation.
jMove to older conversationOpens or moves your cursor to the next oldest conversation. You can hit <Enter> to expand a conversation.
nNext messageMoves your cursor to the next message. You can hit <Enter> to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
pPrevious messageMoves your cursor to the previous message. You can hit <Enter> to expand or collapse a message. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
o or <Enter>OpenOpens your conversation. Also expands or collapses a message if you are in ‘Conversation View.’
uReturn to conversation listRefreshes your page and returns you to the inbox, or list of conversations.
eArchiveArchive your conversation from any view.
mMuteArchives the conversation, and all future messages skip the Inbox unless sent or cc’d directly to you.
xSelect conversationAutomatically checks and selects a conversation so that you can archive, apply a label, or choose an action from the drop-down menu to apply to that conversation.
sStar a message or conversationAdds or removes a star to a message or conversation. Stars allow you to give a message or conversation a special status.
!Report spamMarks a message as spam and removes it from your conversation list.
rReplyReply to the message sender. <Shift> + r allows you to reply to a message in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
aReply allReply to all message recipients. <Shift> + a allows you to reply to all message recipients in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
fForwardForward a message. <Shift> + f allows you to forward a message in a new window. (Only applicable in ‘Conversation View.’)
<Esc>Escape from input fieldRemoves the cursor from your current input field.
<Ctrl> + sSave draftHolding the <Ctrl> key while pressing s when composing a message will save the current text as a draft. Make sure your cursor is in one of the text fields — either the composition pane, or any of the To, CC, BCC, or Subject fields — when using this shortcut.
#DeleteMoves the conversation to Trash.
<Shift> + iMark as readMark your message as ‘read’ and skip to the next message.
<Shift> + uMark as unreadMark your message as ‘unread’ so you can go back to it later.
[Archive and PreviousArchive your conversation and move to the previous one.
]Archive and nextArchive your conversation and move to the next one.
zUndoUndo your previous action if possible (for actions with an ‘undo’ link).
<Shift> + nUpdate current conversationUpdate your current conversation when there are new messages.
qMove cursor to chat searchMove your cursor directly to the chat search box.
yRemove from Current view*Automatically removes the message or conversation from your current view.

  • From ‘Inbox,’ ‘y’ means Archive
  • From ‘Starred’, ‘y’ means Unstar
  • From ‘Trash,’ ‘y’ means Move to inbox
  • From any label, ‘y’ means Remove the label

* ‘y’ has no effect if you’re in ‘Spam,’ ‘Sent’, or ‘All Mail.’

.Show more actionsDisplays the ‘More Actions’ drop-down menu.
?Show keyboard shortcuts helpDisplays the keyboard shortcuts help menu within any page you’re on.

Combo-keys – Use the following combinations of keys to navigate through Gmail.

Shortcut KeyDefinitionAction
<tab> then <Enter>Send messageAfter composing your message, use this combination to send it automatically. (Supported in Internet Explorer and Firefox, on Windows.)
y then oArchive and nextArchive your conversation and move to the next one.
g then aGo to ‘All Mail’Takes you to ‘All Mail,’ the storage site for all mail you’ve ever sent or received (and have not deleted).
g then sGo to ‘Starred’Takes you to all conversations you have starred.
g then cGo to ‘Contacts’Takes you to your Contacts list.
g then dGo to ‘Drafts’Takes you to all drafts you have saved.
g then iGo to ‘Inbox’Returns you to the inbox.
g then tGo to ‘Sent Mail’Takes you to all mail you’ve sent.
* then aSelect allSelects all mail.
* then nSelect noneDeselects all mail.
* then rSelect readSelects all mail you’ve read.
* then uSelect unreadSelects all unread mail.
* then sSelect starredSelects all starred mail.
* then tSelect unstarredSelects all unstarred mail.