How to Archive/Unarchive emails in Gmail- Easy steps(2020)

Gmail archive allows you to move unimportant emails to a different folder and make your inbox look neat and clean. Gmail provides a star option to mark important emails and an archive option for unimportant mails

 It is the best thing to do rather than deleting the emails from the Inbox to clean it just archive and keep them for future reference and when you need the emails unarchive them anytime.

But a lot of people don’t know how to archive and unarchive emails in Gmail. So, here is the detailed guide about how to archive and  unarchive in Gmail. 


Google launched Gmail on April 1, 2004, and it became a huge success. Gmail is one of the most used products of Google LLC with more than 1.5 billion active users worldwide.

Gmail is available in 105 languages this covers 94% of the languages spoken by Internet users worldwide. Out of all the emails over the web 27% is Gmail. Gmail is free to use for everyone. It has been upgrading itself since its launch to provide a better experience to its users.  

Gmail allows you to sent text messages, Images, Audio, Video, Docs, etc. but the attachment size must not exceed 25 MegaBytes.

To provide better user experiences to its users it organizes mails into Promotions, Social, and Primary. Gmail also has an inbuilt spam filter that recognizes spam emails automatically and sends them to the spam folder.

It also allows you to send emails to non-Gmail addresses like outlook, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.

Gmail gives you free storage capacity up to 15 GigaBytes. If you want more storage then you can buy its paid plans. The paid plans give you up to 15 Terabytes of storage for your personal use.


What is Gmail Archive?

Gmail Archive is a folder in Gmail where you can store your unwanted and unimportant emails rather than deleting them. 

If you are unsure about an email whether you will need that email in the future just move it to archive. It will get separated from the regular emails that are important to you in the present. And if you need that email in the future you can find that email in the Archive folder just unarchive it to move it to your inbox

If you go on deleting unwanted emails sometimes some email that was important to you gets deleted. So we can say that moving emails to the archive saves you from a lot of troubles in the future.

If the email that you have archived sends you an email again it will reappear in your inbox.


How to Archive a Gmail

Moving emails to the archive are very simple and can be done in few steps in both web and app

 How to archive email in a computer:

  • step1: Log in to your Gmail
  • step2: Drag your mouse on the mail
  • step3: Click on the archive icon on the right-hand side

How to archive email on a phone:

  • step1: Open the Gmail app on your phone
  • step2: Long press on the email and then click on the archive icon on the top 
  • step3: If you want to sent multiple emails to the archive then long press on the first email and then click on the profile images of the email to select multiple emails and then click on the archive icon on the top

How to Archive email in bulk:

  • step1: Log in to your Gmail
  • step2: Drag your mouse on the mails and click on the checkboxes on the left to select the emails you want to move to the archive
  • step3: click on the archive icon on the top to move them to the archive folder.

Related: Remove boomerang from Gmail

How to unarchive in Gmail:

After the email gets archived the mail is no longer available in the Inbox and also there isn’t any Gmail archive folder for archived emails. So how to retrieve it and move it back to Inbox when you need it. 

So the thing is after we archive an email from the inbox the email gets hidden from the user. And if you want to retrieve archived emails just go to the All Mail folder on the menu. Here you can see all the emails, by all emails I mean the normal emails as well as archived emails.

Now as you can find all your archived emails just select them and unarchive them. Let’s see how to do it.

How to unarchive Gmail from your browser on the Gmail website:

1. To unarchive from a website go to the official Gmail website.

2. After you reach the homepage of Gmail click on Sign in on the top right corner

3. It will take you to the sign-in page. Enter the correct email address and click on next then enter your password and click on Next. It will take you to the Homepage of Gmail .i.e.

4. Now click on the Main menu on the top left corner just beside the Gmail Icon to open it.

5. In the Main Menu click on the All Mail folder. After doing this you will be able to see all the emails even the emails that you archived.

6. You can recognize the normal emails from archived emails because the normal emails will have an inbox written on the start while the archived emails will not have.

7. Select the archived emails that you want to unarchive or retrieve back and click on move to inbox in the top menu

8. Boom!! you have successfully unarchived your email and moved it back to Inbox.

Note: If you are opening the Gmail website on the phone then select the desktop site mode for a better user experience

How to unarchive Gmail on Android phones:

1. Go to the location where your Gmail app is present and click to open

2. Make sure you have already signed in otherwise enter your correct email and password to sign in

3. After you sign in if you are getting sync now pop op then click on it. It will sync all your mails

4. After that click on The menu icon on the top left corner and scroll down to find All Mail

5. Click on the All Mail folder it will take you back to the main page where all mails are present including the archived mails

6. All the mails that do not have inbox written on them are archived

7. Long press on the email or click on the email profile picture to select and then click on the three dots in the top right corner and in that click on the move to Inbox option

8. If you want to unarchive multiple emails just click on the email profile picture to select multiple emails and click o three dots and then move to Inbox

9. After you click on it you will get a pop up saying “moved to inbox” that means you have successfully unarchived that email

How to unarchive Gmail on iPhones:

Steps for unarchiving the Gmail on iPhones are similar to the steps on the android phone. 

  1. Go to the Gmail app on your iPhone device and open 
  2. Go to Main Menu and then click on All mails
  3. Select the archived mail to be unarchived
  4. Click on the three dots and select the move to Inbox option
  5. Boom!! unarchiving your Gmail on iPhone is completed in a few simple steps 

If you archived an email a long time ago then you can use the Gmail search box to find that email. If you search for an email in the search box it will show you all the emails related to that search query if the emails are archived.


Archive VS deleting:


An Archive sorts the important and unimportant emails for you. It is of best use if you are unsure about an email whether to keep or delete it. Mails moved in email can be accessed at any time. 

To access click on the All Mail folder in the menu and you will be shown all the emails even the emails that are archived.


Deleting an email moves the mail to the bin folder from the inbox. So if you deleted an email by mistake you can restore it from the bin. 

To restore just select the email and then click on move to and then select Inbox and that email will be restored moved back to the Inbox

However, mail moved to the bin folder gets deleted are 30 days that means after 30 days the email will get permanently deleted and you will no longer have access to that email. Also, you can clear your bin.



In the above article, we have successfully discussed what is Gmail Archive and how to Archive email in Gmail. Similarly what is Gmail unarchive and how to unarchive an archived email in Gmail.


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