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Easy Guide: Making a Shared Inbox in Gmail

Easy Guide: Making a Shared Inbox in Gmail

Table of Content

Just like a well-oiled machine needs all its parts to function in harmony, your team needs to collaborate seamlessly to get the job done effectively. One of the keys to achieving this is mastering the art of email management.

This is where the concept of a shared inbox in Gmail comes into play. It’s a tool designed to streamline your communication and make collaboration a breeze. But how do you set one up, and what are the potential pitfalls to be aware of?

Hold tight as we embark on this journey of transforming your email management system. Trust me, by the end of this guide, your team’s Gmail game will be on a whole new level.

Key Takeaways

  • There are multiple methods to create a shared inbox in Gmail, including delegated accounts, Google Groups, Google Collaborative Inbox, and third-party software.
  • Shared inboxes in Gmail can enhance internal communication, ensure consistent brand voice, centralize email management, and improve efficiency and collaboration within the team.
  • However, shared inboxes also have drawbacks, such as increased security risks, lack of collaboration and reporting tools, limitations in knowledge storage and progress tracking, and hindrance to productivity.
  • Sharing login credentials for a shared Gmail account is not recommended due to security issues, lack of granular access control, inability to assign emails and track progress, loss of control over account access, and hindered collaboration.

Setup Guide: How to Create a Shared Inbox in Gmail

Let’s dive into the process of creating a shared inbox in Gmail, exploring the various methods, their pros and cons, and providing a detailed guide for setting up a delegated account and a Google Collaborative Inbox.

You’ve got four ways to create a shared inbox in Gmail, each with its own benefits and drawbacks.

First, you could set up a delegated account. Ease of setup is its main advantage, but it’s not ideal for large teams since it has a limit of 25 users.

Next, you can create a Google Group. It’s more suitable for larger teams, but it lacks some of Gmail’s features.

Thirdly, you can use a Google Collaborative Inbox. It’s robust and feature-rich, but can be complex to set up.

Lastly, using third-party software like Missive offers enhanced features, but at an additional cost.

Choosing the right solution depends on your specific needs and use cases. Remember, creating a shared inbox is about making collaboration easier, so pick the method that best supports your team’s workflow.

This setup guide on how to create a shared inbox in Gmail should help you make an informed decision.

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Shared Inboxes in Gmail

While shared inboxes in Gmail can significantly improve your team’s collaboration and communication, it’s also important to consider their potential drawbacks.

When you create a shared inbox, you’re enhancing your internal communication and task tracking, ensuring your brand voice remains consistent in email responses. This can improve efficiency by centralizing email management and providing added control over email communication.

However, a Gmail shared mailbox also poses a substantial security risk. Since multiple team members have access, it’s harder to safeguard sensitive information. Additionally, Gmail’s shared inboxes lack essential collaboration and reporting tools, limiting your team’s ability to effectively work together and track progress.

Moreover, the setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, highlights the lack of proper collaborative features in a shared inbox in Gmail. There’s no way to store knowledge for easy reference, which could hinder your team’s productivity.

Shared Credentials

Despite the drawbacks of Gmail’s shared inboxes, you might still be considering the seemingly simple approach of sharing login credentials; however, this method carries its own set of issues.

Sharing login information for a shared Gmail account might seem like the easiest way to grant access to someone. It doesn’t require any additional setup and provides instant access to the shared account.

However, this method has its own drawbacks. The key issue is security. Once you share login credentials, you lose control over who’s access to the shared account. This can lead to information theft if the credentials fall into the wrong hands. Furthermore, Gmail doesn’t offer granular access control with shared credentials. This means you can’t restrict or manage the level of access a person has once they’ve the login details.

In addition, sharing login credentials doesn’t promote collaboration. Unlike a true shared inbox, a shared Gmail account doesn’t allow users to assign emails, track progress, or communicate within the team.

Delegated Accounts

Often, you might find yourself needing to grant email access to multiple users, and that’s where Gmail’s Delegated Accounts come into play. Through this setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, you’ll discover the ease of managing multiple email accounts.

Delegated Accounts in Gmail offer a secure way to provide access for up to 1,000 users. This means, you can send and receive emails to and from a single email address, while still displaying the original sender. It’s a practical tool, especially when you don’t anticipate more than one other person, apart from the account owner, working in the inbox.

However, it’s important to note that Delegated Accounts mightn’t be the perfect fit for team email management as they lack collaboration and reporting tools. So, while they’re perfect for smaller operations, larger teams might find them limiting.

Google Groups and Collaborative Inboxes

If your team needs a shared inbox for Gmail or you’re part of a small team with a low volume of incoming emails, Google Groups and Collaborative Inboxes could be your solution. To start, you’ll want to create a group. This is an essential step in setting up a collaborative inbox in Google.

Google Groups allows all group members to send and receive messages using a single email address, making it an efficient Shared Inbox Software. It includes basic collaboration features such as assigning emails and setting email statuses. Furthermore, group members can label or tag emails for organizational purposes.

To set up a shared inbox, you’d first create a Google collaborative inbox. This process is straightforward and free with Google Workspace. Once created, all group members will have access to the shared inbox, allowing for seamless collaboration and communication.

While Google Groups and Collaborative Inboxes are great for small teams, they may not offer all the features you need. For more advanced features, you might want to consider other solutions like Help Scout. But for the basics, Google’s solution works wonderfully.

Setting Up a Shared Inbox in Gmail

Setting up a shared inbox in Gmail is a breeze, allowing you to manage all your team’s emails from one centralized location. This setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, will walk you through the process.

Firstly, you’ll need a G Suite or Google Workspace account. Then, navigate to the admin console and select ‘Groups’. Here, you’ll create a new group with the shared email address. Once done, you can add team members who’ll have access to the shared mailbox in Gmail.

This shared inbox setup in Gmail comes with built-in collaboration features. You can assign emails to specific team members and track their status, ensuring no email is left unanswered.

However, it’s important to choose the right setup based on your needs. If easy collaboration is your priority, consider a delegated account. For more control over incoming emails, a collaborative inbox is a better choice.

G Suite and Google Workspace users should note that the shared mailbox in Gmail is an efficient tool for team collaboration. With it, you can streamline your team’s email management and increase productivity.

Creating a Delegated Account

While a shared inbox in Gmail optimizes your team’s collaboration, creating a delegated account could be your go-to solution if you’re looking for a simple and secure option for a limited number of users. To create a new delegated account, you’ll first need to set up a Gmail account if you don’t already have one.

Gmail allows you to grant access to your account to up to 10 users. This way, you can share the responsibilities of managing an inbox without compromising security.

When setting up a delegated account, make sure to assign clear roles and responsibilities to each user. This helps prevent confusion and ensures smooth operation.

Creating a delegated account is easy. First, click on the gear icon on the top right corner of your Gmail page and select ‘Settings’. Under the ‘Accounts and Import’ tab, click on ‘Add another account’ in the ‘Grant access to your account’ section. Enter the email address of the user you want to delegate to and click ‘Next Step’. Confirm your action by clicking ‘Send email to grant access’.

Setting Up a Google Collaborative Inbox

Diving right into the heart of the matter, let’s walk you through the steps to establish a Google Collaborative Inbox. This setting up a Google guide aims to simplify the process of creating a shared inbox in Gmail.

The first step is to visit the Google Groups main page. Remember, you’ll need to be logged into your Google account for this. Once there, you’ll find a button that says ‘Create a group’. Click it, and you’ll be prompted to enter the necessary details for your new group.

The next step in the Gmail shared inbox setup is determining your privacy settings. Choose the settings that best suit your team’s needs. Now, you’re ready to add your team to the group. Enter their email addresses, and click ‘create group’.

The final step to setting up a Google Collaborative Inbox is enabling the Collaborative Inbox feature. You can find this in the settings page of your newly created group. And voila! You’ve successfully created a shared inbox in Gmail. Now, your team can effectively collaborate, communicate and manage emails in one shared space.

Choosing Between a Delegated Account and a Collaborative Inbox

Now that you’ve successfully set up a shared inbox in Gmail, it’s crucial to understand the differences between a delegated account and a collaborative inbox, so you can choose the one that best fits your team’s requirements.

A delegated account gives specific individuals access to a single email account. They can read, send, and delete messages on behalf of the original account. It’s perfect for teams where one or two people handle most of the correspondence, like a personal assistant or manager setup.

On the other hand, a collaborative inbox allows more team interaction. It’s not just one person controlling the inbox, but an entire team can read, respond, and track emails. It works best for customer service teams or any group where shared responsibility for communication is essential.

In the end, when choosing between a delegated account and a collaborative inbox, consider your team’s needs. If one person is to handle all emails, a delegated account would work perfectly. However, if you want to foster a collaborative environment, go for a collaborative inbox. Remember, your choice will significantly impact how your team communicates so choose wisely.

Help Scout: The Ultimate Shared Inbox for Collaboration

If you’re looking for an efficient collaboration tool, you should consider Help Scout, touted as the ultimate shared inbox for team collaboration. Unlike a regular email, a shared inbox is an email account that all your team members can access. It’s a game changer when it comes to handling customer queries, team requests, or anything that requires collaborative effort.

Help Scout is a step up from Google’s Groups Collaborative Inbox. While Google’s solution works well, it does lack some of the more advanced features. Help Scout provides a shared inbox that’s designed from the ground up to improve team collaboration. It provides a seamless experience for managing emails, assigning tasks, and tracking progress, all within the same platform.

Moreover, Help Scout’s shared inbox provides transparency, ensuring everyone in the team is on the same page. No more missing important emails or duplicating effort. It’s an all-in-one solution that makes email collaboration easy, efficient, and effective.

Efficient Conversation Assignments

When it comes to streamlining task distribution within a shared inbox, Efficient Conversation Assignments play a crucial role. With a shared inbox for Gmail, it becomes easier to manage shared inboxes by assigning conversations to specific team members. This not only ensures clear ownership and accountability but also allows for efficient email management.

The first step to create this system is to give your team members access to the shared inbox. Once you’ve done this, you can start assigning conversations. This simple action can significantly enhance productivity within your team. By giving each email a ‘home,’ you ensure that every message is addressed promptly and by the right person.

This feature is particularly useful when dealing with a high volume of emails. It allows for the workload to be evenly distributed among team members, preventing any single person from being overwhelmed. It’s a way to streamline collaboration and make sure every team member has a manageable workload.

Private Notes and @Mentions

Building on the concept of efficient conversation assignments, another set of powerful tools you’ll find in a shared Gmail inbox are ‘Private Notes’ and ‘@Mentions’. These shared inbox tools are designed to enhance team collaboration and make the use of a shared email address more efficient and collaborative.

‘Private Notes’ are an excellent tool for adding context or additional information to emails within the shared inbox. These notes are only visible to members of the shared inbox, ensuring your internal communications remain private. You can use these to provide extra details, clarify points, or share insights about a specific email thread.

The ‘@Mentions’ function, on the other hand, allows you to draw a specific team member’s attention to a particular email or thread. By simply typing ‘@’ followed by their name, you can tag them in the conversation. This function is ideal for task assignment and ensures no important emails slip through the cracks.

Saved Replies

Have you ever found yourself typing the same response to different emails over and over again? Using Google’s saved replies can be a real time-saver. This feature allows you to create email templates that can be reused, reducing the time you spend typing out repetitive responses.

In the setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, you’ll find that saved replies can be a game changer. When you share a mailbox, maintaining consistency in your responses is crucial. Saved replies not only ensure this consistency but also streamline your communication.

Here’s how it works. You draft a response, save it as a template, and voila! Next time you need to send a similar response, just insert the saved reply with a few clicks. You can customize and organize your saved replies for different types of inquiries. This is particularly handy for managing frequently asked questions.

Light Users

While saved replies can significantly enhance your email efficiency, especially if you’re managing a shared inbox, they might be less relevant if you’re a Light User with simpler email needs. As a Light User, you’re likely part of a small team with low email volume. In this setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, we’ll focus on your needs.

To Share a Gmail Inbox, you don’t need complex collaborative features like collision detection or internal notes. Basic email access and minimal collaboration tools are more than enough for your tasks. This doesn’t make your role less important, it simply means that your email needs are straightforward and uncomplicated.

To create a Google Group and set up a shared inbox in Gmail for Light Users, follow the same steps as you’d for heavier users. However, you can bypass the optional advanced reporting or knowledge storage features, as these aren’t typically necessary for your usage.

Collision Detection

When you’re managing a shared inbox, collision detection can be a real game-changer in your team’s workflow. As highlighted in our ‘Setup Guide: How to Create a Shared Inbox in Gmail’, this feature is vital for preventing duplicated efforts. Within the Gmail shared inbox, collision detection alerts you if another team member is viewing or replying to the same email, preventing confusion and mixed responses.

This is invaluable for your team, notably when handling high volumes of incoming emails or time-sensitive communication. The beauty of this feature, as part of your Gmail shared inbox setup, is that it streamlines collaboration. It ensures that all hands on deck are working efficiently and not tripping over each other.

Customer Profiles

Just as collision detection streamlines your team’s workflow, customer profiles can similarly revolutionize your approach to customer interactions and service.

In the context of our setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, let’s delve into how customer profiles play a crucial role.

Customer profiles are a valuable tool, allowing your team members to manage your shared inbox more effectively. By understanding your customers’ preferences, behaviors, and needs, you can tailor your responses and actions to better serve them. This could include demographic information, purchase history, and even communication preferences.

Within Gmail’s shared inbox, these profiles can provide an added level of personalization and efficiency. By analyzing customer profiles, you can identify trends, improve your products or services, and ultimately enhance customer satisfaction.

It’s all about building long-term relationships and loyalty, and customer profiles are a key part of this process.


Diving into workflows, you’ll find they’re essential for streamlining email management and task delegation in a shared inbox. Workflows not only increase efficiency but also set clear procedures for email routing and assignment.

To harness the full potential of workflows, start by setting up a structured approach to handle incoming emails. This can be done using Gmail’s features or third-party tools for more advanced customization.

Next, share this process with all the members of your team. It’s essential that everyone understands how to manage emails within the shared inbox to ensure smooth collaboration.

Using workflows, you can automate repetitive tasks and processes. This feature is a time-saver and allows your team members to focus on more important tasks. Additionally, through workflows, you can track the status and progress of emails and tasks, keeping everyone in the loop.

Tags and Custom Fields

While focusing on streamlining your shared inbox through workflows, don’t overlook the power of tags and custom fields in organizing and categorizing your emails. In this setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, you’ll learn how to make the most of these features.

Tags help you visually label or group emails based on certain criteria. This makes it easier to locate and track them. For instance, you might tag emails from a specific client or about a particular project.

Custom fields, on the other hand, allow you to add specific details to emails, like priority level or customer type. This helps ensure that emails are handled appropriately by your team and contributes to better organization and faster response times.

To create a shared inbox in Gmail and start using tags and custom fields, you’ll need to access your Gmail settings and navigate to the ‘Labels’ and ‘Inbox’ tabs. From there, you can create new tags and custom fields, and apply them to your emails.


Ever wondered about the effectiveness of your shared inbox? Reports can provide a wealth of insights, helping you track and analyze your team’s email communication. Following this setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, you’ll not only create a shared inbox but also learn to utilize the power of reports.

Reports in shared inboxes offer a deep dive into your team’s email activity. They track email volume, response times, and overall team performance. When using a Shared Inbox in Gmail, these insights are invaluable. They aid in identifying trends, measuring productivity, and enhancing customer support.

The setup guide doesn’t just help you create a shared inbox; it also teaches you to use reports for data-driven decisions. By assessing the efficiency of the shared inbox, you can optimize workflow for better results.

Discover More About Help Scout

Let’s delve into Help Scout’s robust features and how they can streamline your team’s collaboration and customer support in managing shared inboxes.

Help Scout, as you’ll discover, is a powerful tool that takes Gmail’s shared inbox functionality to another level.

Help Scout enhances team collaboration, making it easier to manage customer interactions. Unlike Gmail, Help Scout doesn’t just provide a shared inbox; it offers a comprehensive platform for email collaboration. It enables you to assign tasks, leave internal notes, and even track response times. This way, your team can work together efficiently, ensuring no customer query falls through the cracks.

Moreover, Help Scout’s reporting and analytics tools give you valuable insights into your team’s performance and customer satisfaction. These features aren’t available with a standard Gmail shared inbox, making Help Scout a superior choice for teams needing more advanced features.

Additionally, Help Scout seamlessly integrates with your existing workflows and tools, further simplifying email management. So, if you’re following the setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, consider discovering more about Help Scout. It might just be the upgrade your team needs to manage your shared inbox more effectively.

Gmail is Designed for Email; Help Scout is Designed for More

Now, you’ve seen how Help Scout enhances team collaboration; it’s crucial to understand why Gmail, primarily designed for email, has its limitations compared to tools like Help Scout that are built to manage more complex needs.

You might use Gmail daily, but when you turn Gmail into a shared inbox, you might encounter hitches. Although our setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail shows you how to access the shared inbox, you’ll find that Gmail lacks advanced features.

Gmail is designed for email; Help Scout is designed for more. Help Scout provides tools for knowledge management, internal notes, and collision detection. It’s not just an email platform; it’s an all-in-one workspace. It includes reporting tools, which you won’t find in Gmail. These tools help you analyze and track communication, giving you invaluable insights for your team.

Help Scout is ideal for teams dealing with high email volumes and complex collaboration needs. If you’re looking for more than just an email platform, consider the switch. While Gmail serves its purpose, Help Scout takes it several steps further.

Is Help Scout Really Better Than a Gmail Shared Inbox?

While you might be considering a Gmail shared inbox for your team, it’s worth exploring why Help Scout could be a superior choice for your customer support needs. As we’ve discussed in this setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, Gmail’s shared inbox offers basic collaboration features. However, when you compare it to Help Scout, the latter offers a more organized approach to manage customer inquiries.

Help Scout is specifically designed for customer support, providing a structured system to manage and track customer conversations efficiently. This is why some say that Help Scout really is better than a Gmail shared inbox. It offers robust collaboration and reporting tools, making it easier to assign, track, and manage customer conversations within your team.

Moreover, Help Scout comes with unique features like collision detection and internal notes, enhancing team productivity and service quality. It also provides a knowledge base for easy reference.

If you’re looking to optimize your customer support operations, creating a shared inbox in Gmail might be a start, but for a comprehensive solution, Help Scout is worth considering.

Collaboration Made Easy in Help Scout

In Help Scout, you’ll find that collaboration is a breeze, thanks to its structured system for managing and tracking customer conversations. The shared inbox designed by Help Scout allows you to manage incoming emails with ease, making collaboration made easy in Help Scout a reality. Unlike traditional emailing, this system lets you and your team respond to emails collectively, ensuring no conversation slips through the cracks.

With the click of a button, you can select Collaborative and invite your team to the shared inbox. Here, you’ll find use and love features that enhance your teamwork. Assign emails to specific team members, leave notes for others to see, and keep track of ongoing customer conversations. Each member can see who’s working on what, preventing duplicate responses and fostering seamless team collaboration.

Help Scout’s shared inbox brings all your customer communications into one place, making it easier to handle and distribute tasks. Its robust features are designed to streamline your workflow and improve overall team productivity. With Help Scout, you can transform the way your team collaborates, making customer service more efficient and effective.

Help Scout Offers More Than Just Email

Beyond mere email management, Help Scout equips you with a suite of additional features like live chat, a self-service knowledge base, and multi-channel customer interaction capabilities. So, it can be said that Help Scout offers more than just email. It’s built for collaboration, making sharing an inbox and facilitating the ability to collaborate on emails easier than ever.

This setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, underscores the fact that while Gmail is an excellent tool, Help Scout takes things a step further. Not only does it provide all the benefits of sharing an inbox, but it also incorporates tools like live chat. This gives you the ability to interact with your customers in real-time, enhancing their overall experience.

The self-service knowledge base is another feature that sets Help Scout apart. It allows your customers to find answers to their questions without needing direct assistance, cutting down on your team’s workload.

With the multi-channel customer interaction capabilities, you can manage interactions across email, chat, and even social media from one shared inbox. So, for a more holistic and collaborative approach, consider Help Scout.

Reporting and Analytics Included in Help Scout Plans

You’ll find that reporting and analytics come included with all Help Scout plans, offering a robust solution to track and analyze key customer support metrics. This feature is a key advantage of Help Scout over creating a Google Group or a shared inbox in Gmail.

You can access and manage a variety of reports that provide insight into team performance, customer satisfaction, and response times.

In our setup guide on how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, we’ve highlighted how Help Scout’s reporting and analytics can drive data-based decisions. It’s not just about managing emails more effectively, but also about gaining deeper insights into your support operations.

Help Scout’s reporting and analytics tools offer valuable data for evaluating the effectiveness of your support team and identifying areas for improvement. The plans include customizable dashboards and detailed reporting features, providing a comprehensive overview of your customer support activities.

With reporting and analytics included in Help Scout plans, you’re empowered to improve your customer service performance based on hard data. So, while a shared inbox in Gmail serves a purpose, the added capabilities of Help Scout provide a more complete solution.

Easy Implementation and User-Friendly Interface

While the added capabilities of Help Scout offer a more complete solution, let’s not forget the ease and simplicity of implementing a shared inbox in Gmail. This setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, makes it clear that Google’s platform provides an easy implementation and user-friendly interface. With a few simple steps, you’re on your way to efficient and organized email management.

Standard Gmail shared inboxes are ideal for sales or support teams who need to reply to emails collaboratively. The interface is intuitive and familiar, which means no extensive training is required. It’s a solution that’s not only easy to implement, but also easy to use. The setup process is straightforward and uncomplicated, making it a breeze for even the least tech-savvy among us.

While this setup doesn’t offer the advanced features of Help Scout, it does provide a seamless, user-friendly experience and a simpler way to manage shared email communication. So, if you’re looking for a shared inbox solution that’s quick to implement and easy to use, Gmail might be the perfect fit for your team.

Next Steps

So, you’re ready to set up your shared inbox in Gmail – let’s dive into the next steps you’ll need to take. Our setup guide: how to create a shared inbox in Gmail, will assist you in making the right choices.

First, decide on the method for setting up your shared inbox. This could be using delegated accounts or creating a Google Group for collaborative email management. Once you’ve made your choice, follow our detailed instructions to grant access to the other users in your team. This is a crucial step in ensuring everyone can manage emails effectively.

Next, consider the benefits and limitations of using shared inbox software like Missive or Gmelius. These tools offer enhanced collaboration and workflow automation that can elevate your team’s efficiency.

Then, evaluate how a shared inbox can benefit your team’s communication, task management, and collaboration needs. This will help you tailor your group settings for maximum benefit.

What are the benefits of using a shared inbox in Gmail compared to other shared email account tools?

Using a shared inbox in Gmail offers several advantages over other types of shared email accounts. It allows for seamless collaboration within a single platform, improves communication efficiency, provides transparency and accountability, and allows for easy task delegation and tracking. Overall, a shared inbox in Gmail is a powerful tool for team communication.


And there you have it! By now, you should be well-equipped to set up a shared inbox in Gmail, understand its pros and cons, and even consider alternatives like Help Scout.

Remember, the right choice between a delegated account or a collaborative inbox depends on your team’s needs.

So, streamline your email management, boost productivity, and make your work life easier.

It’s time to take control of your email chaos. Good luck!