How to configure Gmail to write your emails for you.

Gmail help canned responsesWhen we find ourselves having to use the same words in emails to customers many times a day we tend to be tempted to keep things brief.  This could be bad for clarity and is terrible for customer care.  You may already have full responses saved in a document that you copy from and paste into your emails, but as a solution it’s time-consuming and any job that becomes so repetitive has huge potential for human-error.  So how can we insert pre-written lovingly crafted messages into our emails?  Enter ‘Canned Responses’…

How to activate Gmail Canned Responses.

  1. When in Gmail click the settings cog on the top left of the screen and select ‘settings’.
  2. Click the ‘Labs’ option that appears at the top of the options page.
  3. Scroll down to the ‘Canned Responses’ entry and click ‘enable’.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click the ‘Save changes’ button.

How to set and use Canned Responses.

  1. Start a new email, make sure it’s blank (so delete your signature if you have one)
  2. Write your wonderfully crafted work of word art
  3. If you’re using the new Gmail compose window click the sub-menu arrow / button on the bottom right of the compose window, navigate to the ‘Canned Responses’ section, scroll to ‘SAVE’ and click ‘New canned responses’. If you’re still using the old Gmail compose method you’ll see a new ‘Canned Responses’ link at the top of the screen when writing emails, clicking this will show you the same Canned Responses menu I have already mentioned.
  4. Now when you’re writing an email that you wish to use your pre-constructed bit of text in you simply place the cursor where you want the text, click on the sub-menu arrow, go to ‘Canned Responses’ and insert the response of your choice.


There are lots of very useful Gmail features that are just a little bit hidden, but Canned Responses is the one that saves us many hours of time per week.

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