How to narrow your search in Gmail inbox


If you receive tons of emails everyday it may become a real problem to find some specific piece of data in your Google mailbox.

Even if you remember a certain phrase that was mentioned in the email you need you may not be able to easily find it because Gmail displays all the emails that contain the words you are looking for, no matter the order of the words. I.e. these words may be spread across the email and be located in its different parts.

In today’s article I am going to give you some useful gmail tips on how you can narrow your search in Gmail and finally find what you need.

Gmail search is quite a powerful tool if you know its capabilities. Have you noticed that when you open the “Sent” folder the words “in:sent“ are displayed in the search field at the top of the page? This is the logic of narrowing your search. If you have many different folders and you know in which of them the email is located then you can add “in:name-of-the-folder” to your search.


If you are an advanced Gmail user and set up labels to some of your recipients that may help you too. Type “from:Mary label:colleagues” into the search field. Of course, you should put the corresponding name and label, not the ones I have mentioned. This may help you to find all the emails that are sent from Mary and have a “colleagues” label.

The quotes may help you to search for a specific phrase. You will be able to find an email that contains exactly the phase you need.


What if you remember that the email contained an attachment that was quite big, but you can’t remember the size or the name of it? Type “size:100000 has:attachment” to narrow your search.

What if you remember lots of details about the email, you narrow your search and still you cannot find anything in the trash or the inbox? Perhaps the email was deleted, and the trash only keeps the massages for 30 days. In order to prevent data loss in the future always back up Gmail with applications like Upsafe to enhance your Google Mail security. If you regularly backup your inbox you will never have to worry about data loss anymore.