This Is By Far The Easiest Way To Fix Email Overload

email overload

Photo: Flickr/Gideon

E-mail overload is a huge problem. In fact, the average employee wastes the equivalent of 73 days a year on email, reports McKinsey Global Institute ,and others argue that email is actually bad for your health.

A service called SaneBox wants to solve that problem, for a monthly fee. 

SaneBox is a web-based app that scans your inbox and determines what messages are important to you based on your reading habits. Messages that you aren’t likely to open right away are filtered into a separate folder.

We’ve been using SaneBox for two weeks and our inbox has already gone down from 1,200 messages to 200.

Click here to see how SaneBox works >

What’s great about SaneBox:
You don’t have to do much.

After you set everything up, SaneBox’s robots scan your inbox from the cloud and determine what is and isn’t important. The software can guess what topics you’re likely to read.

The less-important emails are filtered into a “Sane Later” folder for you to process in bulk. The more you use SaneBox, the better you can train it to know exactly which emails are important.

Besides sorting emails, SaneBox is packed with features that enhance the service and make it even more useful. One of our favourites is called SaneBlackHole, which lets you quickly unsubscribe from email lists by blacklisting those email addresses.

SaneBox works with major email services like Gmail and Yahoo. After it scans your inbox, you just access those service like normal. (The filtering folders are created automatically).

What’s not so great:
The biggest negative with the service is training yourself to check your SaneLater folder. If you’re not in the habit, there’s a chance you could miss an important email. 

SaneBox also costs money, unlike the new free email app Mailbox for iPhone. (Although unlike Mailbox, SaneBox is completely automated).

How much does it cost?

SaneBox offers consumer and business pricing tiers for the service.

  • For $2.04 per month, the service will manage one email account, and let you send five messages to a “RemindMe” folder that will resend the message to you at a later date. You can also send up to five email attachments to your Dropbox account.
  • The $5.79 per month tier will manage two email accounts, send 250 RemindMe’s per month, and automatically send 250 attachments to Dropbox.
  • The most expensive plan costs $19.54 per month and manages three email accounts, sends an unlimited amount of RemindMe’s, and will forward an unlimited amount of attachment’s to your Dropbox account.

Check out our tour of SaneBox to see how it works. 

Start by heading to The site makes it easy to sign up just pop in your email address and hit sign up.

You'll have to enter your email password too so SaneBox can access your account.

Next, enter a few details about yourself. Click continue when you're done.

The robots get right to work and analyse your email. While waiting, let's explore some of the additional features.

These are additional features you can add to your account. SaneLater is the default, but if you get a lot of email newsletters and don't want them clogging your inbox you can turn that feature on. SaneArchive moves your oldest emails out of the way into this easy to find folder, and SaneBulk pulls all of your receipts and reference emails into a separate place. You can also create custom folders.

These are the folders you use. When you don't want to receive any emails from a particular person or spam address, you can drop emails in SaneBlackHole. SaneTomorrow will pop and email back into your inbox the next day. You can create custom folders in this category too.

One of SaneBox's newer features is the ability to pull all attachments from your inbox and automatically send them to Dropbox or Box. This is useful if you have a lot of DropBox/Box storage space and don't want attachments clogging up your inbox.

Sanebox suggests connecting your social networks to the service so it can get to know you better. If you have specific contacts who need to always show up in your inbox, you can train the service to push those directly to you.

You'll see this message once SaneBox has completed the cleaning process.

Here's what your inbox will look like. You only have to check the SaneBox website if you want to tweak services, but you can continue to check your email as you would normally. Just remember to check your SaneLater folder often.

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