How to create new folders to organize emails in Outlook

what to know

  • In Outlook: Right-click Inbox in the left pane and select New Folder . Enter a name and press Enter .
  • On Select New Folder at the bottom of the folder list in the left pane, type a name, and then press Enter .
  • Create a category: Home > Categories > All Categories or select Messages > Categories > Manage Categories .

This article explains how to create and use folders, subfolders, and categories to organize email in Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013, and 2010, and

To create a new folder in Outlook:

  1. In the left navigation pane of Outlook Mail, select your Inbox folder.

  2. Right-click and select New Folder .

  3. Type the name of the folder in the box that appears.

  4. Press Enter .

  5. To create a subfolder, select the folder you want and follow the instructions above.

To set category preferences in Outlook, select Home > Categories > All Categories . You can choose to add, delete, and rename categories, as well as assign shortcut keys to categories. To do this in, select a message and choose Categories > Manage Categories . In the Categories dialog box, you can add or remove categories and indicate whether you want them to appear in the Favorites list.

To apply category colors to emails:

  1. Open an email in the message list.

  2. On the Home tab, select Categories in the Tags group.

  3. Select the category you want to apply to the email. A color indicator appears next to the title of emails in the message list and open emails.

Alternatively, use this method:

  1. In the message list, right-click the email you want to categorize.

  2. Select a category in the menu that appears.

  3. Select the category you want to apply to the email. A color indicator appears next to the title of messages in the message list and open emails.

Does an email belong to more than one category? Apply multiple color codes to the email.

To set up a new folder:

  1. Select New Folder . The new folder link is at the bottom of the folder list. A blank text box will appear at the end of the folder list.

  2. Enter a name for the folder.

  3. Press Enter .

To create a new folder as a subfolder of an existing folder:

  1. Right-click the folder under which you want to create a new subfolder. Be careful to select items from the Folders list rather than the Favorites list.

  2. Select Create new subfolder from the context menu that appears. A text box appears below the folder you right-clicked.

  3. Enter a name for the new folder.

  4. Press Enter to save the subfolder.

The same steps apply to creating deeper subfolders under any new subfolder. Just repeat these four steps for each subfolder you want to create. You can also drag and drop a folder from the list on top of another folder to make it a subfolder.

Drag individual messages from your inbox or any other folder into new folders you create to organize your emails. You can also right-click the message, select Move, and then select the folder you want to move the email to.

You can even set up rules in Outlook to filter emails from specific senders into folders or app categories so you don't have to do it manually.

  • To recall an email in Outlook, go to Sent Items and open the email you want to recall. Go to Messages > Actions > Additional Actions and select Recall this message . Choose to delete unread copies or delete unread copies and replace them with new messages.

  • To change the signature for all emails in the Outlook program, go to File > Options > Mail > Signature . Under Select a default signature , select a signature for New Mail or Reply/Forward , and then select OK . For a single email, in a message, go to Message > Contains > Signatures and select the signature you want to use.