We all know the feeling. That moment when you realize that you didn’t reply to the client’s email. The really important email. The email that would have meant the difference between a happy customer — and you, staying late at work, trying to fix the problem, and calm down an irate account holder at the same time.
If you’re struggling with a mountain of customer emails, a shared inbox could be the answer. That way, you and your teammates can distribute the workload evenly, keep your emails organized — and never, ever miss a customer query again.
In this article, we’ll get into the details about how shared inboxes work, walk you through some software options, and finally explain how you can use monday sales CRM as a shared inbox — and so much more.Try monday sales CRM
What is a shared inbox?
A shared inbox is a collaborative email system that allows two or more team members to access and respond to the same email.
For instance, you might have an email address like firstname.lastname@example.org. Whenever customers write to that email address, anyone in the Customer Support team will get the email and be able to answer it.
Shared inboxes are most often used in customer support, sales, and project management settings. They can help you respond to emails more quickly, avoid duplicating work by accidentally answering the same email, and improve your team’s internal communication.
How does a shared inbox work?
Of course, the way the shared inbox works will depend on the tool you use to manage it. Here’s a basic overview:
- You set up a new shared inbox for your team in an email messaging platform, a customer relationship platform like monday sales CRM, or a dedicated communication tool.
- You grant access to the team members who need it. You can usually define roles and permissions too. For example, you might want some people to be able to send emails from the shared email address, and some people to just be able to read the emails so they’re up to date on the latest communications.
- When people send emails to the associated email address, the shared inbox automatically collects and displays them for your team. It might also be able to aggregate messages from different channels, like chat software or social media platforms.
- Your team can access the shared inbox from their individual devices, then read and respond to messages.
- You can usually also use the shared inbox platform to assign messages to different team members, leave comments, or update the status of the email to keep everyone informed.
- Many shared inbox platforms also let you track response times, generate reports, and generally keep an eye on how efficient your team is when it comes to answering queries.
Why should you use a shared inbox for team email?
A shared inbox is there to make your team’s life easier. Everyone knows that email can be a nightmare. There’s just so much of it: roughly 333 billion e-mails are sent and received daily around the world. Most of us feel like we get too many emails.
So everything you can do to make email easier will help your team become more productive — and less overwhelmed.
Here are just a few benefits of a shared inbox:
By allowing multiple team members to manage messages in the same place, it makes it easier to know who’s answering which email, and which messages still need an answer. You avoid duplicating efforts, and keep all the information about your customer communications in the same place.
Because a shared inbox can make your team more efficient in processing their emails, you can get back to your customers more quickly. This is especially important for customer support because response times tie directly into customer satisfaction ratings.
Seamless knowledge sharing
If you use a shared inbox, then anyone can jump in to reply to a customer. It means that if one team member is off sick, someone else can easily pick up where they left off in their communications with customers.
What are the best shared inbox options for teams?
Review site G2 gives you 54 great options for shared inboxes. We’ve filtered the options down to the cream of the crop, starting with…
1. monday sales CRM
OK, so you know that monday sales CRM is one of the top-rated customer relationship management platforms on G2. But did you also know that we offer a shared inbox?
Here’s the thing — the whole purpose of monday sales CRM is to let you manage the entire sales cycle from pre- to post-sales in one centralized, easy-to-use location. And that includes email.
It’s easy. Just share access to a connected email account with your teammates. You can customize share settings for each individual, choosing between “Read & Write” and “View only.”
With just a few clicks, you’ll get a shared inbox that will keep all your customer emails in the same place, so you have all the information you need to close deals and offer superior post-sales support.
Not to mention handy email templates to make sure you’re all sending the perfect message to every prospect.
Best of all, you can send bulk emails right from the Contacts board, with no need to jump around between different tools.
2. Microsoft Outlook
Microsoft Outlook’s shared mailbox feature lets a group of people read and write emails from a public email alias. When a person in the group replies to a message sent to the shared mailbox, the email appears to be from the shared address, not from the individual user.
There are a few limitations though — for instance, you’ll need to make sure that your company has the right Microsoft Outlook license if you want to store more than 50GB of shared mailbox data.
One reviewer also comments that you can’t encrypt email from a shared mailbox and that if anyone deletes an email it will affect all users.
Plus, only people from inside your organization can use a shared mailbox with Outlook — so you can’t invite external consultants or other third parties to get involved.
3. Google Collaborative Inbox
If your team uses Google Workspace, you can use Google Collaborative Inbox to manage your team’s email at no extra cost.
Google’s shared inbox solution comes with several benefits. For starters, it’s free if you’re a Google Workspace subscriber. Plus, it’s easy to set up, comes with permission settings, and you can assign conversations to team members or to yourself.
What it doesn’t do is bring your email right into your usual inbox — so you’ll still need to use multiple inboxes to handle your personal and team email.
4. Hubspot Service Hub
Hubspot Service Hub is another solid choice for managing your team’s emails. It comes with a built-in ticketing feature to help your team keep track of your incoming messages. Reviewers tend to mention the user-friendly interface and convenient integrations with other software.
There’s a reason why monday sales CRM ranks higher than Hubspot on review site Software Advice though. Hubspot is a great option, but it can be complex to use — one reviewer describes it as “intimidating and scary.”
5. Help Scout
Help Scout is a good option for managing your shared inbox, because it gives you the ability to send email and offer live chat and self-service customer support from right inside a single inbox. Reviewers tend to say it’s easy to use and set up, and it has a great reputation for customer support.
However, Help Scout may not be “sufficient for larger, more complex operations”, according to a G2 reviewer. Plus, Help Scout is very focused on customer support functions — if you want a single platform to manage the end-to-end sales journey, you’d be better off with monday sales CRM.
Why monday sales CRM is the best option for your team’s shared inbox
If you’re looking for a shared inbox for your team, monday sales CRM has you covered. Our CRM platform prioritizes the end-to-end customer journey, from first point of contact to purchase and beyond.
When it comes to managing your team’s email, our shared inbox feature is just the beginning. We also offer:
- Email templates with custom parameters — save time with fully customizable, pre-defined email templates.
- Mass emails — increase your efficiency by sending mass emails directly from your Contacts board view
- Email tracking and automation — set up automated rules and notifications so you can send the right email quickly
- 2-way email integration with Gmail and Outlook — simplify client communication by connecting your Gmail or Outlook accounts for streamlined email exchanges
- Customizable email signatures — so you can add a personalized touch to your communications (using HTML email for a polished appearance)
- An AI assistant and AI email generator to help you write better emails more quickly
How to set up your shared inbox in monday sales CRM
Ready to get started? You can set up your shared inbox in monday sales CRM in just 3 easy steps:
Step 1. To access the functionality, click into the Emails & Activities settings in your monday sales CRM account, and open the “Email account setup & privacy” section.
Step 2. Click on the three-dot menu to the right of the connected email and select “Share options”. You’ll see the option to create a shared inbox right there.
Step 3. Add the people or teams who should have access to the connected email account.
Now you’ve added the relevant people, you can customize the share settings that each of them will have by clicking into the drop-down menu to the right of their name and deciding from one of two share options:
- View only. All users will be limited to viewing.
- Read & write. If you choose “Read & write”, this permission only applies to users who have access to monday sales CRM. All other users in your account will be limited to view only. (This permission setting is only available for Pro and Enterprise monday sales CRM accounts.)
And that’s it! Your new shared inbox is ready to help your team start dominating your email.
It’s as easy as everything else in monday sales CRM.