Gmail

Gmail is a free, search-based email (webmail) service, which is accessible from a web browser anywhere in the world. It's a safe and secure email tool that is trusted by over 425 million registered users worldwide.

To start sending email through a Gmail account, or triggering Flow XO workflows when something happens in your Gmail account, you just need to create a new Flow XO workflow and choose what should happen - there's no need to alter your Gmail account in any way.

Flow XO supports the following Gmail triggers:

  • New Email
  • New Thread

'New Email' will trigger every time that a new email enters your Gmail account, from any source, under any circumstances. 'New Thread' makes use of  Gmail's 'Conversations' feature - replies to emails (and replies to those replies) won't activate the 'New Thread' trigger - only a brand new email unrelated to others in your inbox will (with a couple of exceptions).

You can use the following Flow XO tasks to automate Gmail:

  • Add a Draft
  • Get a Draft
  • Update a Draft
  • Delete a Draft
  • Send an Email
  • Get an Email

Connecting You Account

Connecting your account is easy - you'll just need to click 'Authorize' in the Flow XO 'Authorize the Service' window when setting up your workflow action for the first time, then sign in to your Google account in the window that appears (if you're not already signed in) with your normal Google account email address and password, then confirm you're happy to connect. You'll be returned to the workflow and Gmail will be connected to Flow XO.

You'll be asked to (optionally) choose some settings for either of the trigger tasks. 

Search String -  This input allows all incoming email (that matches other criteria we set) to be scanned for a word, phrase or certain criteria, and only trigger if those criteria are met. You can see all the options available in Google's 'Advanced search' article.

Has Attachment - This option defaults to allow triggering on all emails, but you can optionally select to only trigger on emails that contain an attachment, such as a PDF or word document, by selecting 'Yes'. 

Label -  Gmail uses 'Labels' to classify email. There are three types of labels - 'System' type labels, which define the standard folders such as 'Inbox' and 'Draft', 'Category' type labels, which define the type of information in the email (based on how Gmail choose to sort the message) and custom labels that you can add to help sort your email. There's some additional information on those here.

Here's some further information on the inputs to the 'Send an Email' task:

To, Cc, Bcc - The address or addresses to which I'd like to send the email. Multiple addresses should be separated by a comma. 

From Name - Here you can specify what name should appear in the 'From' field of emails that are seen by a recipient. You might want to do this for privacy reasons, or for general marketing emails - e.g. so that the email can appear to have been sent from 'Product Sales' rather than from the name that you signed up for Gmail with - which might be your own name.

From Email Address - You can optionally send from a different address than the account you've authorized in this task. To do this however, you'll need to set up that address in Gmail.

Reply To - This option allows you to specify that any replies to the email you send via this task will be sent back to the address you enter here. For instance, you might want to send from the address you signed up for Gmail with, but get responses to 'enquiries@example.com'.

Subject - The subject line of the email. You can enter text, an output or a combination of both here. 

Body - The main message body of the email you want to send. You can enter text, an output or a combination of both - but this input will only accept plain text, not HTML. It will retain the spacing you apply however, so the structure of the email will reflect how the text is placed in the text box (correct spacing on paragraphs). 

There are some special outputs here that you should note:

Reply Only - This is a really useful output; it allows me to capture just the body text of a response. So I can cut out the signature, the thread of replies and the rest of the conversation, and just get the message that was sent to me. A good example of where I might use this is if I'd like to capture the response and post it to a CRM or messaging app like Slack, where I wouldn't want any peripheral information, such as the email headers etc - just the message that was typed and sent in respect of the single email I just received. 

HTML Email - This output lets me capture the entire HTML structure of the email I was sent, plus the associated thread. This is useful for analysing more complex emails that are sent that have been designed in HTML.

Message URL - This output provides a direct link that will take you to the message in question. It's useful if you want to send details of a longer thread, but don't want to forward the entire thread or copy out the entire conversation.

FAQ

Can I trigger on every new email I receive, and only to brand new emails (not part of an existing conversation or thread) separately?

Yes - Flow XO has two distinct triggers, 'New Email' and 'New Thread' to accommodate these different scenarios. 'New Email' will trigger on every email you receive (in line with other criteria you've set up in the trigger) regardless of whether it's a new communication, or part of an existing thread or conversation. The 'New Thread' trigger will only ever trigger when the email received is not part of a current conversation or trail of emails. (The things to note here are that a conversation will break off into a new thread if the subject line of the conversation is changed, or if the conversation reaches over 100 messages).

Can I send to multiple email addresses in the To: and Cc: fields? How are the To: and Cc: outputs handled?

In the To: and Cc: input fields you can enter as many email address as you like, separated by a comma. When using these field outputs, the single output will contain every address that was included in the To: or Cc: field on the email providing the output. So for instance the output "To Name(s)" will contain either a single email address, or a string such as 'example@example.com, test@test.com'.

Can I send HTML emails through Gmail?

You may only send plain text in the body of the email through the 'Send an Email' method. (Note that triggering on a new email will allow you to extract the HTML component of the email as an output, but this can't be used in the 'Body' input - the result would purely be HTML code written out as text in the body of the email).

Any question on using this service we haven't answered? Contact us!

Known Issues

  • We use 'OAuth2' to to authorize Google accounts through Flow XO. Across all the Google apps for a single account (Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs etc), there is a limit of 25 total authorizations. This is unlikely to ever cause you a problem - Once you've authorized a service once, you can use that authorization in all of your workflows. So unless you're integrating elsewhere - directly through your CRM platform or via another integration app, or a custom integration - you'll only ever have one authorization per Google service to think about.  If you do have problems authorizing, it may be because of this limitation.

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