How to Disable Inbox Tabs in Gmail

Organize your messages in a way that makes sense to you

Gmail uses tabs to organize your inbox into various types of messages:

  • Social: Messages from social media such as Facebook, YouTube, and Google
  • Promotions: Offers from companies you do business with
  • Updates: New things happening with your accounts, plus responses to Google Docs shares
  • Forums: Updates from forums you participate in
  • Primary: A combination of all types of messages

Depending on how you like to use email, these tabs may be really convenient or really annoying. If you find them more distracting than helpful, you can easily get rid of them. If you do so, all messages previously found only within tabs appear in your general Inbox.

Disable Inbox Tabs in Gmail

Follow these steps to turn off tabs in your Gmail inbox and see all messages in one list:

  1. Open your Gmail inbox. In the upper-right corner, select the Settings (gear) icon.

    A screenshot of a Gmail inbox with the Settings gear highlighted
  2. From the menu, choose Configure inbox.

    A screenshot of Gmail's Settings menu with the Configure Inbox option highlighted
  3. In the Select tabs to enable dialog box, deselect (uncheck) the tabs you don't want to see.

    A screenshot of Gmail's inbox configuration screen with the tab options highlighted
  4. Select Save.

    A screenshot of Gmail's Configure Inbox screen with the Save button highlighted
  5. Gmail takes a few moments to refresh your Inbox. After it does, the tabs you disabled are removed, and their contents appear in your Primary tab.

    Gmail inbox with tabs removed
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