Sometimes we want to write an email today, but send it tomorrow, next week or next month. Let’s see how to do this in Outlook and Gmail. We will also see how to cancel scheduled emails.
There are many business and personal reasons for wanting to schedule emails to be sent at some specific time and day in the future instead of immediately. For example, a company might want to release a news story or product information on a particular day. The email to customers or news sites can be scheduled to occur at the right time.
Announcements of special offers, deals and promotions need to be timed and it is good to have everything ready and scheduled to go out automatically to potential customers rather than scrabbling around trying to get everything done on the day.
For personal use, birthdays, anniversaries and special days are obvious ones where scheduled emails might be useful. All the emails for the month can be created at the same time and then scheduled to go out on the right days.
Schedule emails in Outlook
Go to outlook.com in a web browser and click the button in the top left corner to create a new email. After writing it, click the down arrow (V) next to the Send button and choose Send later on the menu. This will allow us to schedule it.
A small calendar widget appears and you can choose the month with the up/down arrows, click a day and then enter the time at which the email is to be sent below. Click the Send button in this calendar window to finish. It is quick and easy.
Cancel a scheduled email in Outlook
Suppose you change your mind at some point and want to cancel an email that has been scheduled, or maybe you just want to see what emails have been scheduled. Where are they and how do you view them?
Select the Drafts folder in the Outlook sidebar and scheduled emails are listed as draft messages. Click a draft to open it.
The draft shows the date and time the email will be sent – the text is a bit small and red on black isn’t the most readable, but the information is there. It also shows the date it was created.
There is a Cancel Send button. This does not delete the email, it just makes it a regular draft message instead of a scheduled one. You can edit the draft, send it now or re-schedule it to be sent at some point in the future.
Schedule emails in Gmail
Gmail is able to schedule emails to be sent at any time and date in the future and they do not have to be sent immediately. Instead of clicking the Send button, click the little arrow to the right and then click Schedule send which appears above it.
Gmail offers several helpful suggestions as to when to send the email, like tomorrow morning or tomorrow afternoon. If you do this on a Friday, it will also suggest Monday morning, which is the next working day. Click one of these if they are what you need, otherwise click Select date and time to choose another option.
A calendar is then displayed and you can select the month using the < and > icons. Click the day and then enter a time to send the email on the right. Click Schedule send to finish.
Cancel a scheduled email in Gmail
Google helpfully adds a new category of email in the sidebar called Scheduled and it shows the number of messages it contains. Click it to see a list of the emails and the dates on which they will be sent. Let the mouse hover over a scheduled email to see extra information and icons to perform actions like to delete it.
Click a scheduled email in the list to view it and it shows the time and date, and provides a button to cancel it. This makes it a regular draft email that can be edited, deleted, sent or scheduled for a different time and date.
Scheduled emails are very easy to create and to manage. They enable you to deal with tasks more easily and to create messages in batches, to be sent out at the appropriate time. Do you make use of them?