Filters

Filters in Zoho Mail

Filters organize the incoming emails based on a set of pre-defined conditions and actions that can be customized. It makes sure that your mailbox is organized and facilitates better organization and easier identification of emails.

Zoho Mail also lets you enable Smart Filters. Smart Filters are those that automatically process an email's headers and classify it accordingly as Newsletters, Notifications or Group emails.

Conditions and Actions:

All custom filters have two parts namely, the 'Conditions' and the 'Actions'. You can set multiple conditions and actions based on your preferences.

The conditions or the criteria are based on the following parameters: 

  • Sender
  • Subject
  • To/Cc
  • Priority
  • Attachment Name
  • Attachment Type
  • Has Attachments
  • Duration

The multiple conditions can be 'Or' conditions or 'And' conditions, based on the which the filter actions will be processed.

The automated Actions can be one or more from the following options:

  • Move to a chosen folder
  • Apply a selected Tag/Flag
  • Mark as Read/Unread
  • Delete the email
  • Forward the Mail (to a different email address)
  • Add Mail as Notes
  • Assign Mail as Task

Create New Filter

  1. Login to www.zoho.com/mail
  2. Go to Settings >> Mail Settings >> Filters
  3. If you have multiple email accounts configured, select the required account from the 'For Account' dropdown.
  4. Click on the '+' icon on the top right corner of the Filters tab
  5. The 'Create Filter' dialog box pops up on screen
  6. Enter a relevant name for your filter
  7. In the dropdown list across the filter name, choose
    • When any of the conditions match ('Or' based filter)
    • When all the conditions match ('And' based filter)
    • For all incoming messages
  8. Choose a parameter from the 'Conditions' dropdown, select the linking parameter and enter the related text in the text box across the Conditions field.
  9. Click on the '+' button across the Conditions field to add more such filter conditions. 
  10. After adding the necessary conditions, choose the Actions that you want to set for your filter
  11. For the ‘Move to Folder’, ‘Flag as’, and ‘Tag as’ actions select the suitable folder, tag or flag from the dropdown menu across the actions field.
  12. You can add multiple actions by clicking on the '+' icon across the Actions field
  13. Select 'Stop Processing Other Filters' to stop the execution of other filters
  14. Click on 'Save' to save your filter preferences

Alternatively, you can also add a new filter from the mail view pane. 

  1. Open the email that you want to view
  2. Click on the 'More Actions' icon on the top right corner of the mail view pane
  3. Select Add To >> Filters
  4. The 'Create Filter' window pops up on screen
  5. You can set your filter preferences by following the same steps as above.

Note:

Instead of defining the filter conditions and actions manually, you can also use the Smart Filters option in Zoho Mail.

Match All Incoming Messages

In the condition type, you can specify 'Match all Incoming messages', for performing a select action on all incoming emails. This can be useful when you want to perform a particular action like adding a tag or flag to all incoming messages, irrespective of the conditions.

You need to be cautious when you select this option because actions like 'Delete' or 'Mark as Read' might turn out to be disastrous.

Stop processing other Filters

When you have multiple filters, the filters are processed from top to bottom, in the sequence they appear on your screen. When an email satisfies the first filter, it is processed by the first filter and is checked for the next filter in the sequence. But, if you check the 'Stop processing other Filters' checkbox, the rest of the filters are skipped.

If 'Stop processing other Filters' is not checked, the email passes through the rest of the filters as well, based on the conditions of each filter. However, actions like Move To Folder, Delete Message, Mark As Read, Add flag, Filter based forwarding are one time actions and if the same action is set in the forthcoming filters, it gets overridden.

Ex: Consider you have 4 filters with conditions based on Subject of the email containing 'Important', 'Marketing', 'Announcement' and 'Blog', with actions as 'Move to Folder', 'Apply Tag', 'Add flag' and 'Move to folder', 'Add Tag' respectively in each of these filters. Suppose you receive an email with subject "Important announcement about Blogs - Attn: Marketing team", then all the four filters will be processed sequentially. But the action 'Move to folder' will be done based on the action set in the topmost filter. The last filter action 'Move to folder' will be skipped, but the tag specified in the last filter will be processed, provided all the filters have 'Stop processing other Filters' unchecked.

Run Through Filter

Once a filter is created, the incoming emails undergo the filter processing and are classified accordingly. But, the emails that you received prior to creating the filter will not be processed. If you want the previously existing emails also to be filtered, you can use the 'Run through Filter' option.

  1. Login to www.zoho.com/mail
  2. Go to Settings >> Mail Settings >> Filters
  3. If you have multiple email accounts configured, select the required account from the 'For Account' dropdown
  4. The filters associated with that account get listed on the screen
  5. Place your cursor over the filter for which you want to schedule the Run Through
  6. On hovering over the respective filter, you can see the relevant options
  7. Click on the 'Run Through Filter' icon
  8. Select the folder whose emails you want to classify with this filter from the options listed
  9. The emails in this folder will be processed according to the filter parameters and classified

Filter Sequence

When you create multiple filters, the sequence of your filters is important for it to work the way you want. When a new email arrives in your mailbox, Zoho applies the filters in the order it appears in your Filters page. If the email satisfies the first filter's conditions and Stop Processing other Filters is selected, only that filter is applied to the message. The rest of the filters will be skipped.
Hence check the option 'Stop Processing Other Filters' and rearrange as per your preference to have the optimum effect of filters. To change the order of filters you can provide the order number in the text box to the left of the filter name or drag and drop the filters.

Disable Filter

You can disable a filter by clicking on the tick mark in the status column. Once disabled, this filter will not be applied to the incoming messages. If required, it can be enabled later by clicking on the tick mark again. 

Import/Export Filter

You might want to use the same set of filters that you've created for a particular account in other POP accounts too. In such cases, you can use the option export/import filters in Zoho Mail to recreate the same condition and action settings for other accounts too.

Import Filter

  1. Login to www.zoho.com/mail
  2. Go to Settings >> Mail Settings >> Filters
  3. If you have multiple email accounts configured, select the required account from the 'For Account' dropdown
  4. Click on the 'More Actions' button on the top right corner of the Filters tab
  5. Click on 'Import' from the options listed
  6. Browse and select the '.dat' file containing the filter rules
  7. Click 'Open' after selecting the .dat filter rules file
  8. The new filters will be created based on the rules specified in the file
  9. If the folder structure mentioned in the rules file does not exist in the account, the folder structure will be created when the filter is imported

Export Filter

  1. Login to mail.zoho.com
  2. Select Settings >> Mail Settings >> Filters
  3. If you have multiple email accounts configured, select the required account from the ‘For Account’ menu in the Filters tab
  4. The filters associated with this account get listed on the screen
  5. Click on the ‘More Options’ button in the top right corner of the window
  6. Choose ‘Export’ from the list of options.
  7. All the existing filters under that account will be exported as a .dat file

If you want to export only certain filters, select the checkbox to the left of the respective filters. Now, click on the 'More Options' icon and choose 'Export' from the options listed. The selected filters will be exported as a .dat file.

Delete Filter

To delete multiple filters at one go, select the checkbox to the left of the respective filter and click on the ‘More Actions’ button on the top right corner of the filters window. Choose the ‘Delete’ option from the listing.

To delete individual filters, hover over the respective filter and click on the ‘Delete’ icon across the filter.