How many times have you sent an important email and want to know if the recipient has seen it yet? So much of what we do these days is time-sensitive – even in our personal lives. I cannot begin to tell you how often over the past 13 years that I have run my VA business that I sat staring at my Gmail program waiting for a response. Sometimes, you just cannot continue with what you are doing until you hear back from the other party.
This is where read receipts can come in handy. The recipient may not reply immediately, but you know that they have read your missive. Another great use for this feature is in legal situations: you will have proof that the other party has received and read the contents, even if they deny it later.
Sadly, Gmail itself does not have this function included. Don’t ask me why because it baffles me. Nearly every email program I have used offers read receipts. However, all is not lost! If you are a Gmail user, there are still a couple of options other than loading Gmail through a desktop client that you may not wish to use (such as Outlook). I’m going to show you the easiest way to accomplish your goal, using an extension called Mailtrack within Google Chrome.
How to Request a Read Receipt in Gmail Using a Chrome Extension
There is a Chrome extension available to plug right into your Gmail. Yeehaw! This is the method I will be using from now on. To make this magic happen, you’re going to need to add the ”Mailtrack” extension to Chrome from the Chrome Webstore before you can activate it. Just click THIS LINK to go straight to it and then click the blue ”Add to Chrome” button.
As soon as it finishes adding itself, two windows will pop open automatically on the computer: your primary (signed in) Gmail account, and the ”Getting Started” page for the Mailtrack Extension.
First, click your Gmail tab and click the blue ”enable” box.
The Getting Started page is going to first tell you that you have to connect to your Gmail account. Select the ”Connect with Google” button.
Go ahead and choose which Google account to connect the extension to (if you have more than one), and confirm your password to sign in.
Next up is granting Mailtrack access to your Google account. The page will ask if you are sure you trust the extension, for safety reasons. You can read the Terms of Service for Mailtrack on this page if you have not already done so. Google itself recommends this extension, so I trust it. Once you’ve made your decision, click the blue ”Allow” button.
Don’t be intimidated by the next page! If you are just a “personal” user, you will only need the free account. If you’re a business user, you may want to look into one of the paid-for options or adding teams. I, of course, chose the free option and clicked that ”Sign Up Free” button!
Congrats! You are now signed up and the extension has been added to your Gmail account. This last page tells you that and allows you to click a button to simply open up your Gmail account. There is also an option to add the same extension to your Android phone if you have one and would like.
That’s all you have to do. Mailtrack will now attach itself to every single email you send… requesting a read receipt from your recipient. Keep in mind, though, that many people (myself included) turn on the option to ”Never Send Read Receipts” within any and every email program we use. In that case, you won’t receive a receipt and you will have no way of knowing if they ever saw your message.
How to Uninstall Mailtrack in Chrome
If you decide you no longer wish to use Mailtrack, it is easy to remove. With Chrome open, head up to the top-right corner and click those three magical dots. Then hover over ”More Tools” and click ”Extensions”.
All of your Chrome extensions will now be open in a page. Find the Mailtrack box and click on that ”Remove” button.
A small box will now open up asking you to confirm the removal. You’ll be taken to the Extension’s main page and they’ll tell you they are sorry to see you go. Close Chrome completely and then re-open and you will find it is no longer listed in your extensions.
One further step you should take is to be sure Mailtrack has been removed from your Gmail account. Click THIS LINK to be taken to a list of all apps that have access to any of your Google account services. Look for Mailtrack in the list and then click to expand the entry.
Click that ”Remove Access” button and then click ”OK” in the popup box. You can see the permission removed immediately.
What other Gmail questions do you have for me? How can I be of service?
Happy mailing – and receiving read receipts!