HomeBusiness8 OperationsApple’s Mail app: Mailbox, mail rules, and Smart folders

One of the interesting part of using Apple’s Mail program is the use of mailbox, mail rules and Smart folders. Creating a mailbox allows you to place incoming emails into certain locations such as customers, sales, vendors, volunteers, family, and friends.

Creating  Mailbox and Mail rules. Creating mailbox in Mail creates a static, i.e. stable location to place your emails that the emails will reside in (smart folder below will NOT “collect” your emails into a new mailbox, but “finds” them for you0. I know a lot of business people that just use the email Inbox part of Mail and little else, so here ‘s a way to be more productive with your Mail application and all of your emails.

  1. Under “On My Mac” on the left side of the Mail window and create a new mailbox for a subject that you want to categorize such as “Customers.”
  2. Click on an email that you want to put into the newly created folder
  3. Under Mail > Preferences > Rules (far right tab) > click on the “Add Rule” button and select what actions you want to be done with this and future emails and click “Apply.”
  4. A dialog box comes up if you want to apply this rule to all emails, say “Yes” and watch Mail put all of the emails that follow that rule into your new mail folder.

Now do the above sequence for all the other folders you want to create and Mail rules will put all of the emails into the right mailboxes. Now we’ll go into using Smart folders

Smart folders. One of the aspects of smart folders is that allows you to have dynamic information concerning your emails. The difference between mail rules and smart folders is mail rules places your emails into a specific mailbox while smart folders only find emails that conform to your specific needs.

Here’s one such idea of using smart folders, showing all of the last seven days emails in your mail folders, no matter where they are located.

  1. Go to Mailbox > New Smart Mailbox folder and name a new smart mailbox, in this case name it “Last 7 Days”
  2. Double click on “Last 7 Days” mailbox and enter all of the info below in the next line.
  3. “Contains ‘Messages'” that match “all” of the following conditions “Date Received” “is in the last” “7” “Days”
  4. Click on “Ok”

There you have it and you’ll see all of the mail, both read and unread, in the new Smart Mail folder that will adjust each

Hope you see how automating some of  your email tasks can save you time and money.


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