Email is an important tool in our day-to-day lives and has become an essential part of how we get things done — from planning an office party with colleagues to organizing a vacation with your spouse to Mauritius — with much ease. And today, Google has launched something called “Gmail Quick Actions” in their service, which helps you get such things done even faster. With this functionality, you would not have to spend your time digging through an email for relevant information, such as links for tracking your orders or flight check-ins. In this article, we’re going to dive in to see some use-cases of what can be done with Gmail Quick Actions and then go through what it takes to add them to your emails.
Gmail Quick Actions help you take actions without you having to leave the comfort of your inbox, by surfacing important information as call-to-action “buttons” that appear at the end of your email subject line. By surfacing the most common actions, your recipients can work through their inbox even faster and have a richer experience in terms of displays of information within their emails.
Use cases of Gmail Quick Actions
There are a number of things that you can get your users to do quickly using Gmail Quick Actions. For example, you can rate and review restaurants you ordered from and even modify your reservations—all from within your inbox. And if you are a deal lover, you can easily save a promo from Google Offers with just one click, making it easy for you to find and buy whenever you’re ready.
If you use YouTube and Vimeo to upload videos, finished uploads can be viewed with a single click using the “View Video” button. Likewise, Dropbox folders, Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides shared with you can be opened right from your inbox very speedily.
There’s currently four types of Inbox Actions supported in Gmail: One-Click Actions, RSVP Actions, Review Actions, and Go-To Actions.
Go-To Actions are the simplest of all types of available actions. They come handy when you want to make a link available to someone so they can follow the link, and hence the action associated with it.
One-Click Actions make it easy for users to interact with you without leaving Gmail. This could mean adding a newly released movie to their watchlist, checking in to a hotel reservation, confirming subscription to a newsletter, and much more. However, One-Click Actions can only be interacted with once. Once used, these actions will display a checkmark next to the Action label.
RSVP Actions are a little more complex since they allow the user to have a higher level of interaction within Gmail. The recipient can trigger a menu that offers the options to RSVP inline with the mail. With RSVP actions, you’ll include information about the start and end dates, location, and the options for RSVP.
The last type of action is Reviews which can be used to rate and review things like restaurants, albums, movies, hotel stays, or just about any product or commodity service. The Review Action prompts users for a review from one to five stars and as well as a space for a text review which may be required or optional.
The Gmail Quick Actions are specifically for the transactional emails and Google has very strict rules for this. To set-up Inbox Actions for your emails, you have to register with Gmail in order to be whitelisted. In order to register to be whitelisted and enable Inbox Actions with Gmail, you need to meet their registration guidelines.
The datatype of the transactional emails that you wish to send should be pre-approved via Google and you should have been sending the same type of emails to your users for at least a quite while.
You should have a datatype that falls in accordance with these.
– Bus Reservations
– Flight reservations
– Parcel Delivery
– Car Rental Reservations
– Lodging reservations
– Restaurant Reservations
– Train Reservations
Along with these two prerequisites, you should have the following:
You must be a high volume sender.
You must have a low rate of spam complaints.
You may only setup Inbox Actions for transactional emails.
You may only use secure (https) links in your call-to-action buttons.
You must authenticate your emails with either DKIM or SPF.
You must send from an email address matching the domain name from your authentication.
You must follow the Gmail Bulk Sender Guidelines.
You must already have Inbox Actions implemented prior to your application and be able to send a live test email from the real address directly to Gmail for testing purposes.
Adding Gmail’s Inbox Actions to your transactional emails can help you significantly improve click-through rates on your transactional emails. Once you’re ready to go, you can submit your registration form to Gmail. You’ll need to submit it once for each type of email and Action that you plan to offer. This can take a little time, so make sure to plan ahead.