Millions of professionals around the world depend on Outlook to send and receive emails. It is among the top three most used Platforms. This Outlook review will help to shed light on its features and benefits.
It is an application from Microsoft that is used primarily to send and receive mail. However, its capabilities exceed postman duties. The application can also be used to organize a user’s calendar, adding entries such as appointments, tasks to be done as well as managing contacts. As part of the Microsoft Suite, you can purchase it along with other Office tools.
Outlook has been in use since 1997 when it was introduced as part of the Microsoft Office 97 package. Since then, there have been many other versions with improved features that are aimed at making life for the office worker much easier. Today, automation is the feature every enterprise tool tries to incorporate and Outlook is not any different.
Microsoft Outlook is web-based and features impressive functionality. One of its major appeals is its ability to maintain a clean inbox free of junk mail so that the user can focus on only important communication.
Moving with the times, it is able to integrate with social networks and can easily share video content. This however doesn’t slow it down so whether you are integrating or simply sharing content from a social platform with team members, this can be done flawlessly and there is the option of automating such tasks.
Microsoft has given their flagship mail platform a good rethink to come up with Outlook 365 which is the epitome of simplicity while packing a load of functionality to it. Unlike other mail platforms that may restrict attachments to just 25MB, this one will allow as much as 300MB which is practical considering what the modern business may need to share using mail. This capability is also backed up by SkyDrive which provides storage for documents.
Not many mail users give thought to the importance of features since they think they just need to be able to send and receive mail. However, there’s more to it and Outlook mail reveals this with features that help you do a lot more with your mail account.
Mail Automation: This feature allows a user to determine the time mail is sent. You might draft an email in the night, but schedule it to be sent out in the morning when your respondents are online. This can also help if you have to send out notification mail and you do not want to forget. Simply schedule it and it will be sent at the right time.
Task Scheduling Using Mail: This saves you from having to open your calendar and schedule a task or appointment. You can simply drag an email that contains details of a task and drop it onto the calendar tool and the task will be scheduled automatically.
Social Media Integration: A user can integrate messages and posts from social media with their email account so that even without visiting the social platform, you can easily respond to messages or posts. You can also receive notifications every time your business is mentioned on social platforms.
Junk Filter: Are you tired of receiving promotional mail early Monday morning? Or you have to peruse your inbox to see which mail is important? Your outlook email can filter junk mail so that all you receive is mail that is relevant to your work.
Synchronization: Outlook allows you to synchronize your mail across different devices. This means you can access your mail on the office laptop, on your mobile phone as well as your laptop at home, and on any other devices you use.
Customized View: A user can determine how their inbox displays emails. For example, you can choose to use a specific color for unread mail and highlight mail that contains a keyword. Users can decide how to make outlook work for them instead of being a prisoner of the generic view.
The application has several features that can be uncovered as a user explores its capabilities. The bottom line is these features are intended to help people work faster and smarter.
You can improve the performance of your mail account using Outlook integrations. These can increase the tasks you are able to perform without living your mail screen. Microsoft is always adding new applications that can connect with their mail platform and this makes automation of different tasks easy.
The integration process is fairly easy since in most cases there are instructions either from Outlook or the third-party app that you wish to connect to. However, in some cases, you may need to write a bit of code to configure the connection.
There is good news however for people who hate the idea of having to write code since you can use Zapier to integrate your Outlook account with thousands of other applications. This is an integration that doesn’t require coding. By simply choosing the application from a list and describing the trigger and action you would want to be completed, you can integrate within a few minutes.
It is evident that Microsoft sees the need for integrations and so they make the effort to ensure users have flawless integrations with most of the common applications used by businesses. This includes social media sites, cloud storage apps, news feeds, document generation and so many more.
These integrations turn an impressive email account into a remarkable automation tool that helps the user perform several functions without having to switch windows or open new tabs.
It can be a bit confusing trying to understand Outlook’s pricing. This is because you may find information indicating that Outlook Webmail is free but at the same time you may come across a hefty price quote of $139.99 on their website. To clear the air, Outlook is free to use online with a lot of cool features. However, you may need to pay for extra storage space as well as advanced features.
You should also take note of the fact that the Microsoft website is marketing the 365 suite which is a combination of other products that also include the mail account. Outlook as part of the subscription for the other productivity tools will come at a considerable fee and includes several other features like OneDrive, Excel, and Word.
For a business looking to gain from the full suite of Microsoft products, it is advisable to fork out the money and pay for a complete plan. The free account may be suited for small businesses and individuals who may be comfortable with limited storage space. A free account however can help a user learn more about the product before they take the plunge.
The safety of your data and conversations is something everyone should worry about. Microsoft has tried to provide basic security for outlook clients but it is evident that the good stuff has to be paid for. For example, a free account will not have encryption of messages and attachments will not be scanned for threats unless you are a paid client.
It is, however, possible for a user to install their own security using third party applications to protect them from viruses and data theft. It is advisable to employ two-step authentication.
As you search for an email provider, the mobile app is something you should take into consideration. You need more than just access to your mail on the go. Outlook takes this into consideration and have created a mobile app that is just as productive as the desktop version. You have the power to do anything on your mobile phone including automating processes and so much more. It is arguably the best email mobile app for business.
Microsoft Outlook may struggle for popularity against Gmail and Apple Mail, but it has managed to make an impression on those who have used it. The fact that it has the backing of other powerful tools in the 365 suite makes it more appealing for businesses and people who are heavily invested in office suites like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
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