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Outlook for Mac Advanced Guide

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Once you get the hang of using Outlook for Mac, you may want to learn more about the advanced settings that can make your emailing experience simpler.


To get the most out of your Outlook email client for Mac, learn how to operate with shortcuts, take advantage of the Quick Steps, learn how to limit desktop notifications, and more. The following guide will help you get familiar with the advanced user features in Microsoft Outlook 2011 for Mac.

Control Your Email Client With Shortcuts

Just like in the case of other products in the Microsoft Office suite, Outlook can also be controlled via shortcuts on the keyboard. As a rule of thumb, operating software from the keyboard is considered an advanced feature, but the truth is it is not difficult to learn the main keyboard shortcuts in Outlook for a more efficient way to manage your emails. Here are some of the most commonly used shortcuts in Outlook for Mac 2011:

•    ⌘+S  - save an item
•    ⌘ + P – print an item
•    ⌘+Z – undo the last action
•    SHIFT+⌘+N – create a new folder
•    SHIFT+⌘+\ - hide the reading pane or show it below
•    ⌘+\ - hide the reading pane or show it on the right
•    OPTION+⌘+R – minimize or expand the ribbon
•    ⌘+N – create a new message
•    ⌘+RETURN – send the open message
•    CONTROL+⌘+C - check recipient names in the open messages
•    SHIFT+⌘+R – reply to all
•    SPACEBAR - scroll down to the next screen of text or display the next message

Access your schedule and tasks on the desktop

The My Day feature that comes built in in the Microsoft Outlook for Mac 20122 is an application that display the most important information in Outlook even when the email client is closed. With the help of this app, you can access your contacts, manage tasks, and see your schedule at a glance.


To view events and tasks for the current day or the previous one, use the arrows located on the top of the application, next to the date. To view an event, click on it. To create a new event, click on the + button located in the bottom left part of the window. With the help of the toggle buttons on the button, you can switch between viewing complete or incomplete tasks for the day.

Limit Desktop Notifications

Not all people are thrilled to see the "You've got mail!" notification every time they receive an email. If you think that getting a notification for every mail is too distracting, set your desktop notifications to appear only for important emails. The email client allows you to create a rule to stop notification coming in every time you receive a message. To do this, you first need to turn off the desktop alerts under Mail Options, and then create a specific rule in Outlook to display messages you receive from certain senders.

Use Email Templates to Save Time

Some people have to send the same kind of email over and over. If you are the kind of person who has to send regular reminders or memos, you can save lots of time by using email templates instead of typing the same email over and over again. Here's how to create a new template email in Outlook:

1.    Open the Outlook client.
2.    Compose your email.
3.    So to File.
4.    Click Save As…
5.    Click Outlook Template
6.    Save the template.

The next time you want to use the email template, simply click on New Items > Choose From…> User Templates in File System.

Create Search Folders for Important Emails

Save your searches for quick access, so you no longer have to waste time looking for that important email your boss sent you last week. This function is very useful for those who are perform regular searches in their inbox. To save a search, click on Search Folders in the navigation menu, and then select "New Search Folder". Enter your criteria manually or use the wizard provided to create an advanced search. Once you have defined your search criteria, click Save.

Smart Tip: To edit the criteria for the smart search folder, hold down the Command key an, click the folder, and then click Edit. Click Save when you are done editing.

Limit the Amount of Junk Mail

Outlook for Mac has a junk filter that can separate legitimate messages from spam. The trouble is sometimes legitimate emails are classified as junk, so you may want to look into ways to reduce this possibility. Here are some of the things you can do to avoid your inbox becoming cluttered with junk messages, while still being sure you receive all legitimate emails straight to your inbox.

1.    Add all you important senders to Contacts. This way, you can be sure Outlook will never classify an important email as junk.
2.    Use the Blocked Senders list to add all the email addresses you no longer with to receive emails from.
3.    Manage messages from a mailing list using the Mailing List Manager. By handling messages this way, you can be certain they are not classified as junk.
4.    Specify domains you want Outlook to exclude from the spam filter. For example, if you add a domain such as to the Safe Domains list, all emails that contain will not be classified as junk.

Smart Tip: By configuring the Mailing List Manager to process and move messages to other Inbox folders, the Junk Filter will no longer be able to process these messages. Apply junk email protection to individual folders to process the messages in them with the junk email filter.

Outlook for Mac also protects you from phishing attempts. If the email client considers that an email is a potential scam, you will see a warning to beware of links in suspected folder. Only click on the link in question if you are sure it comes from a trusted source to avoid being a victim of online fraud.

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