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How to know when someone opens your emails

“Hey!!! My planner arrived today! Thank you SOOOOOO much!”

I sent the text as fast as possible and set my phone back down. Before it touched the table, my phone buzzed with a response.

“That’s so weird!” Alexa shot back. “I was JUST typing you an email to see if you received it!

I know you were, I thought.

I knew the second Alexa opened my email to ask about the gift she mailed me the other week. Scratch that—I know when ANYONE opens my emails. 

I know when my clients open my invoices. I know when a prospect opens my cold email. If you’re an editor reading my pitch for the first time, I know the second you read that, too.

It’s really hard to ghost me.

How do you know when someone opens your emails?

I get a notification every time someone opens my emails. Every. Single. Time.

I know—super stalkerish of me. But I can’t tell you how unbelievably handy it is.

Take the scenario at the beginning of this post: My friend Alexa, blogger and founder of The Nourished Planner, sent me a planner as a gift. She emailed me asking for my address, I replied and “tracked” the email, and she mailed me the package.

I received her gift two weeks ago and completely forgot to thank her for it.

However, while working this morning, I saw the pop-up notification that Alexa opened our email thread. I immediately thought, Crap! I completely blanked on thanking her! and shot her a quick text before she had the opportunity to press send.

No, but really—where do those notifications come from? What service do you use?

I use Hubspot CRM to track all my emails. By connecting Hubspot to my Gmail account [and yes…I connect ALL my accounts—even my personal email. I know when my parents open my emails.] I know when every single person opens, clicks, or otherwise interacts with my emails.

Ok, cool. But most important question: Is it free?

Duh. I’m a one-woman show here. I don’t use a single tool that isn’t free (seriously).

Alright, how I install it?

Signing up for Hubspot CRM is super easy (and beneficial for outreach, but that’s another day, another post). Here’s how you do it for Gmail:

1. If you don’t have a Hubspot account already, create one, here.
2. Login to your new account. On the top navigation, click Settings.
3. On the left side panel, click Integrations, then Email Integrations.
4. Under Email Integrations, click Hubspot Extensions, then Hubspot Sales Extension for Gmail.


5. Download and add the Chrome extension.
6. Under Email Integrations, click Connect an Inbox


7. Select Gmail, and follow the prompts.

That’s it! When you create a new email in Gmail, you’ll see the Hubspot icon. Make sure that you check “track” for any email where you want to know the recipients’ actions.

Um, hello—I can’t see anything on my phone!?

Oh, right. About that. You will NOT get notifications if you check your email on your phone.

Don’t worry—if you miss the desktop notifications, you can still know whether someone opened your emails. Just log into Hubspot, click Sales Tools in your top navigation. Your Sales Activity will be the first view to appear, which immediately shows clicks, opens, you get.

Handy, right?

Haven’t you ever emailed someone and thought, “Did they even read it?? Why haven’t they responded!?” The next time someone ghosts you, just wait until you see that “opened” notification flash across your screen. THAT’S WHEN YOU NAIL ‘EM.

And they’ll be left thinking, That’s SO WEIRD! I was just thinking about you!

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