How to Set Your Email to Alert When It Has Been Read


Most business communication is done over email and it is easy for messages to get lost in someone's inbox. Set your messages to send you a receipt when they are read by the other party. This is a helpful tracking system that lets you know the date and time the message was accessed. You can follow-up with someone after you know they have seen your email, or you can resend it if you never received the receipt.

Things You'll Need

  • Mozilla Thunderbird
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Computer

Microsoft Outlook

  • Decide if you want to receive a read receipt for all messages, or just the one you are currently sending.

  • Click on "Options" for a single receipt. Click on "Tracking options" for versions of Microsoft Outlook that are older than 2007. Select, "request a read receipt".

  • Go to the main window to set a read receipt for all messages. Click on "Tools", then "Options". Select the "Preferences" tab and go to "Mail options" then to "Tracking options". Check next to "Read receipts".

Mozilla Thunderbird

  • Choose to mark all messages for a receipt, or only the current one.

  • Click on "Tools" and "Request a delivery receipt".

  • Return to the main window to select a receipt for all messages. Click on "Tools" then "Options". Click on "Receipts" in the lower right corner of the window. Check next to "When sending a message, always ask for a receipt."

Tips & Warnings

  • This method will not work if people read emails through the Web, or on another email client. Some can also choose to not send the receipt, and you would not be notified.

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  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images
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