9. Moving Emails

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Learn how to manually move emails across folders and how email rules can automatically move emails to the designated folder once they’re received.


Lesson Goal

Explore ways we can move emails manually and with email rules.

Moving emails manually

In a previous lesson we discussed how different folders take on different roles. In many cases moving emails across these folders is automatic or very streamlined.

For example, new emails are automatically stored in the Drafts folder. When we send emails they are automatically moved to the Outbox and then the Sent Items folder.

When we select an email and click the Archive or Delete commands, the email is moved to the Archive or Deleted Items folders.

But in some cases we have to move the emails manually. For example, if I create a folder called Copied for emails where I was addressed in the Carbon Copy field, there’s no command for moving my emails to this folder.

To do this, I need to right-click the relevant emails, hover over Move and then select the folder I want to relocate my email to.

Moving emails with Rules

Although we can’t create commands like the Archive or Delete commands, we can create custom rules to automatically move our emails based on certain criteria. This is similar to the Automatic Replies Rules, however, these can be applied even when Automatic Replies are turned off.

To do this, click the Rules dropdown command and select Create Rule. This window only lets us create basic rules, so we’ll click the Advanced Options button.

To start, we need to add our conditions. For example, we want emails that we’re copied on to be automatically moved to the Copied folder. To do this check the box next to “where my name is in the Cc box”.

Click next and then check the box next to “move it to the specified folder”. Before we click next, note that the summary below gives an explanation of our rule in descriptive language. The blue word specified is vague and that’s why it’s in blue. If we click it, we’re prompted to select the folder. In this case, we’ll select the Copied folder and click next.

We can finish our rule here, or we can add exceptions to it. Let’s make an exception for emails with a high importance. We’ll check the box next to “except if it is marked as importance”. We’ll click the blue text below and specify high importance.

When we hit next we need to finalize this rule. First we need to give it a name. Next, we need to decide how the rule is activated. We can choose to run it now for all incoming email and we can choose whether or not we want to apply it to emails currently in the Inbox. To complete the rule, click the Finish button.


Organizing how we see emails in the Mailbox pane is very helpful for cleaning up the view. However, we often have to move emails around to prevent clutter. In this lesson, we'll explore ways we can move emails both manually and with email rules.

To start, if an email has already been addressed or if it's no longer relevant, the best thing to do is to send it to the archive.

We probably won't need to read it again but it's useful to have it in case we do. We might also want to move certain types of emails to other folders. For example, I want to separate emails I've been copied on from emails addressed directly to me.

To do this, I'll create a new folder called Copied.

I'll quickly add the CC column to the view to spot emails I was copied on.

We can see there's one email. I'll right click it, hover over Move and select Copied.

Now you can remove the CC column by right clicking it and selecting Remove This Column.

This helps to clear up the view but repeating this task every time we get copied on an email would be tedious. We can make this process more efficient by creating an email rule.

Note that email rules are different from automatic mailing rules. We'll navigate to the Home tab, select the Rules dropdown command, click Create Rule and then select Advanced Options.

There are a lot of options here but we're interested in where my name is in the CC box.

This will be the condition for our rule.

When we click Next, we're asked to choose how this rule acts.

We'll select move it to the specified folder.

In the box below, we'll click the underlined word specified and select the Copied folder.

We'll then click Next to view a list of exceptions.

I'd prefer if important emails remain in my Inbox so I'll select accept if it marked as importance, select High Importance, click OK and then Next.

We'll call this rule Move CC emails to Copied.

And click Finish.

Now whenever I'm copied on an email, it'll automatically be moved to the Copied folder unless it's marked with high importance. As you can see, this is one very specific use of the rules feature. It supports a wide variety of uses and it can help automate a surprisingly broad range of actions. This concludes our final lesson in this course. Over these lessons, we've learned the central skills for composing and managing emails in Outlook. We've learned how to get started with Outlook and familiarized ourselves with the interface. We explored the different types of Outlook folders and examined the basics of composing and sending emails and more advanced email delivery options. We also looked at lots of ways to efficiently organize our mailboxes such as viewing emails as conversations, sorting, categorizing, flagging and moving emails.

Using these skills will pay dividends when managing your personal and business email accounts in the future.

Sending and Organizing Emails


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