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Review: 6 Chrome extensions let you track your Gmail

Howard Wen | Sept. 21, 2015
Want to know if that important email was actually read -- or ignored? These Gmail tools can help.

A notification card will pop up from the lower-right corner of your main desktop alerting you whenever a tracked email is opened, a link inside it has been clicked, or a file attached to it has been downloaded or opened. As with Sidekick, links inside your email must be set as hyperlinks if you want their clicks to be tracked.

You can turn off tracking for an email that you've already sent by opening it and clicking the "Tracking" button that appears on its upper-right corner.

The Web site has some interesting features as well. You can go to your account page to view a chart that graphs the number of times your tracked emails have been opened over the last 30 days. Below this is a list of your tracked emails and the current status of each (i.e., when it was last opened, a link inside it was clicked, and an attachment to it downloaded or opened).

Free and paid plans

Yesware's free account will track 100 events (such as openings and link-clicks) per month. There are also three paid plans.

The Pro plan ($12 per month per user) lets you send an unlimited number of tracked emails and adds the ability to schedule emails, to sync with CRMs, and to track attachments and presentations. You can also be informed of how many times a PowerPoint presentation has been viewed or downloaded. The Team plan ($20 per month per user) includes a variety of team features, while the Enterprise version ($40 per month per user) adds integration with Salesforce.

Bottom line

As with Mail2Cloud, Yesware's ability to track attachments could be helpful, if you're willing to pay for it. Yesware also has some excellent business features, such as the ability to track PowerPoint presentations. However, if you simply need to send a few emails to track, there are simpler options that don't clutter up your Gmail user interface quite as much.

Conclusions

If you only need to track when an email you send through Gmail is opened, and don't mind having to set the links you want to track in your emails as hyperlinks, Sidekick is a good bet because of its great notification-card user interface.

Bananatag and Boomerang also include free send-later and remind-later features, but Boomerang's remind-later functionality can be tied to a tracked email, a nice addition. On the other hand, Bananatag provides a chart on your account page illustrating the opened and link-click rates of your tracked emails for free. When you pay for Bananatag, you'll get info about the recipient's location and device. Boomerang doesn't provide this level of detail.

Need to track attachments in your emails? That doesn't come free. The cheapest to consider is Mail2Cloud at $8 per month. It will keep an accounting of how many times your attachments are downloaded and let you set a shut-off date as well.

 

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