Office 365 (Outlook on the web) - Working with messages

Some people just read their email. Messages come in, they read them or reply to them and otherwise don't make any changes. Outlook Web App offers you several options for working with messages that you've received. Among other things, you can move messages, organize them into folders, and flag them for follow up.

Working in the message list

The message list is designed to help you work through messages quickly. You can use controls next to every message to find messages that were sent with high or low importance, or that have an attachment. You can also use a single click to delete a message, or to flag it for follow-up. By right-clicking a message, you can access a list of other actions you can take, such as creating an Inbox rule or adding a category.


You have the ability to search for a message.

Click to select, delete, or flag

When you hover over a message, you will see icons to select it, delete it, flag it, pin it, or mark it as unread.

Right-click actions

Right-click a message in the list view to see a menu of other actions you can take. These actions include:

Recevied message options


You can select more than one message in the list view either by using the check boxes or by clicking individual messages. To select multiple adjacent items, click the first and last items while you hold down the "Shift" key. To select items that aren't adjacent, hold down the CTRL key as you click each item you want to select.

After you've made your selection, you can either right-click to see a menu of actions, or use the options in the reading pane to delete, flag, or move the items. Click Cancel to clear the selected items.

top of page Top of Page

Flags and reminders

When you flag a message, today is automatically assigned as the follow-up date. You can set a different follow-up date by right-clicking the flag. To mark a flagged item as complete, click the flag and it will change to a check mark. To mark a completed item as not complete, click the check mark and it will revert to a flag. To remove the flag, right-click the flag icon and select Clear flag.

flag options

You can find all of your flagged items by going to Tasks, or by clicking the view menu at the top of the message list and selecting Sort by > Flagged.

top of page Top of Page


top of page Top of Page

Arranging the list view

The default setting for the list view is to group messages by conversation, and sort them by the date received with the newest messages on top. You can change this by clicking the filter control at the top of the list view. If you turn off conversations, messages will be displayed in the reading pane individually instead of as part of a conversation.

top of page Top of Page

Filtering the list view

By default, all messages in the current folder will be displayed in the list view. You can use the filters at the top of the list view to show only messages that are unread, messages that have your name in the To or Cc line, or messages that are flagged.

If you choose Unread, only messages that haven't been marked as read will be displayed in the list view. While in the unread view, messages won't be automatically marked as read. You can mark individual messages as read by clicking Mark as read in the reading pane. To mark a conversation as read, right-click in the list view and choose Mark as read. After you mark a message as read while using the Unread filter, the message will disappear from the view.

top of page Top of Page