Handling Spam in the Gmail App

More than 60% of our members are now using Gmail. This page has been specifically designed to help those people who access their email using the Gmail App on a Smartphone or Tablet (and iPhone or iPad) and who find valid emails have been wrongly placed in their Spam folder.

Gmail has a “Learning Spam Engine” and you can, over time, teach it what you regard as spam and what you do not.

In the first instance, where possible, unwanted emails (eg corporate mailers) should always be “Unsubscribed” using the Unsubscribe option rather than flagging them as Spam. This prevents the Spam Engine from wrongly assuming these items are spam when processing other people’s email.

For instructions on how to flag genuine spam found in your Inbox, go to the Step 3 below

If you are finding that important emails regularly end up in your Spam Folder, here’s a set of instructions to follow which will “teach” Gmail that you want them delivered directly into your Inbox. You may have to repeat this process several times but in most cases, Gmail will learn quite quickly!

Gmail App looks like this on your phone or tablet

This process only applies to the Gmail Apps available on Smartphones and Tablets (Apple and Android) – just follow these instructions… (you may find it useful to print them off before starting)

If you don’t use the Gmail App on your smartphone or tablet, or only access your email from a PC, click here

Step 1 Marking Items as Not Spam

Open the Gmail App.

Make sure you are looking at your Spam folder.

Carefully check the list and for any item you are absolutely sure are not Spam (eg from SeniorNet Kapiti Inc), open it by tapping (as you would for any normal email).

Now, tap the 3 vertical dots in the top right-hand corner
(shown here circled in blue).



Tap the Report not spam option on the drop-down
(circled here)

Repeat this process for each item in your Spam folder that is definitely not Spam

Return to the Inbox and you should find the items you marked have moved.

You have now also “educated” the Gmail Spam Engine about what you do not regard as Spam.

Step 2 Repeating the Process as Necessary

If you are having problems with missing emails, always use this process to check whether they have landed in the Spam Folder. Following these instructions once or twice will normally “educate” Gmail and rectify the problem. Persistence pays!

Step 3 Identifying Spam that Gmail missed

On the rare occasions that Gmail misses real spam and places it in your Inbox, you also need to “educate” the Spam Engine (but remember Unsubscribe is a better choice, and preferred, for normal unwanted corporate mailers)

Identify the Spam email in your Inbox and tap to open it.

Confirm it is real Spam, then tap the 3 dots in the top right-hand corner (circled here in blue)



When the drop-down menu appears, tap Report spam – (circled here with red).

Each spam item you identify in this way will be moved to the Spam Folder and automatically deleted after 30 days.

Repeat the process for any other spam in your Inbox

This “educates” the Spam Engine and normally you won’t see messages from this sender again. If you do, repeat the process.


A Final Note

It needs to be emphasised that the process of “educating” the Gmail Spam Engine can only be done in this way (or via Gmail’s Webmail). Simply moving unwanted emails from the Inbox to the Spam folder does not work.

The Report spam and Report not spam menu options described here are the only way you can send a message to Gmail about your spam preferences.

Remember, if you have any difficulty following these instructions, come to a scheduled How Do I…? Workshop at SeniorNet Kapiti.