Ask LH: Can I Put An Outlook Mail In More Than One Folder?

Hi Lifehacker, How can I file an email to multiple related folders within Outlook 2013? Thanks, The Outlook Is Bleak

Dear TOIB,

Outlook generally sticks to a "one folder per email" rule. However, there are a couple of ways you can work around this limitation if you want to file an email in multiple ways.

Firstly, you can make a copy of the email and put it in a second folder by holding down the Control key while you drag the email into a folder. One problem with this is that the copy won't necessarily track any subsequent related discussions, so you won't see helpful messages telling you "You replied to this email on " and the like. If that's not a feature you use, this is an easy workaround. (You'll also potentially end up seeing multiple copies of the email in search results, but that's not a major hassle.)

If you don't want multiple copies of the email, the other option is to use Outlook's Categories features. When you right-click an email, you can assign to one of six coloured categories, and you can rename the categories to suit yourself. Messages can have more than one category, and you can filter to only view particular categories. So that's also a potential solution, albeit one where you can't cover more than six folders.

Cheers Lifehacker

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    More than six colours are available - there are about 20. Also, if you try to make a new category when all colours are already assigned Outlook will repeat colours with a different category name.

    I use categories to have Outlook 2013 behave like gmail, with all emails in one folder (inbox) and search folders for each category. This requires a rule to save all sent emails to the inbox rather than the sent items folder. Emails can then be assigned to multiple categories and turn up in multiple search folders. There was a microsoft blog article about it (ultimate inbox) but I can't see it anymore.

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