Saturday, April 19, 2014

Search in Yahoo! Mail – A Powerful Tool

With Yahoo! Mail offering unlimited storage, I find myself using the delete button less and less these days. And with the ability to move messages to folders with one keystroke (in the all-new version of Mail), it’s more important than ever to be able to easily and quickly find messages.

Simple Searching
With just a simple keyword search, like “orders”, we give you the option to filter search results by a whole host of options. Whether you want to narrow your results by Date, Folder, Sender etc. they are all listed for you in a very nice, clickable, list (right-hand side in the new Mail, left-hand side of Classic Mail). But that just scratches the surface of what you can do.

Shortcuts
For the more advanced searchers of the world (plus those who prefer typing to clicking), you can filter your searches from directly within the search box. Think of the filters as little search shortcuts for your Mailbox.

Let’s take a look at an example:
Say you want to find all of your emails in your Mailbox with the subject pictures?
- In the search box, type: subject:pictures

But you have a ton of emails with pictures. You want to find that fantastic picture from Dave and you remember he called it cool.
- In the search box, type: subject:”cool picture” from:dave

On the other hand, if lot’s of people send you cool pics, but you’ve never really liked the ones that Dave sends you, you can hide Dave’s messages from the search results using the ‘-’ (dash) to omit his results
- In the search box, type: subject:”cool pictures” –from:dave

Attachments
Did you know that you can search for different types of attachments using search in Yahoo! Mail? And even better, you can search INSIDE attachments. Yes, that’s right, I said inside. I know what you’re saying – “That’s not possible from a web mail provider.” Well it is possible, and you can do search inside Word documents, Excel and PDFs with Yahoo! Mail. I’m not aware of any other free Web mail provider that does that!

Let’s use one of those shortcuts.
- In the search box, type: from:dave attachment:”restaurant list”

Why do I care about this? Well, since Dave sends so many emails with attachments to me, being able to search inside attachments I can find the document he sent me with his restaurant recommendations. And we even give a little preview and highlight the part of the document with the search terms.

More with Attachments
There are plenty of other things you can do with the attachment shortcuts. You are able to search for an attachment name, type and number of attachments. Want to see a list of boarding pass PDFs you have received from American after checking in?
- In the search box, type: from:american attachmenttype:pdf

Further reading
If any of this is slightly confusing or you want to learn more, we’ve created some tutorials. Tutorial topics include: Quick Searches, Searching for Messages, Narrowing Search Results. And there is a complete list of these Yahoo Mail search shortcuts in our help pages.

Now if only I could find my car keys…

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