Collaborative inbox is a new type of group in the new version of Google Groups. Similar to a shared mailbox in Exchange, a collaborative inbox lets individuals claim (or assign to others) messages from a shared inbox.

Click here to watch this video on YouTube.


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17 thoughts on “How to Set Up a Collaborative Inbox in Google Groups

  1. Rabah Reply

    Is this rolled out for Google Apps yet? I don’t see the option for a collaborative inbox. My instance of Google Apps is on the rapid release schedule. Any ideas?

    • Bas Reply

      True! Free version of Google Apps doesn’t have this feature. If you want to use it ,one should upgrade to Google Apps Business.

      Although the video is great the title is a bit misleading. It misses quite some information about how setting it up correctly. Maybe there would be something to improve 😉 For the most part your videos are really helpfull though!


  2. Edwin Chong Reply

    Also posted this on Google+:

    sounds interesting! had a play but i’m a bit lost. If it can be used for support questions, do members only get the ‘ticket’ ie. email when they are assigned it? played with the member’s email delivery settings but couldn’t set members to only receive upon assignment to them ie. all members get all messages/abridged/digest….help..?

    • Google Gooru Reply


      Unfortunately there does not seem to be any way to alert the member when they are assigned a task. I think the best way to use it would be to just keep it open and check for updates in the inbox every now and then. It would be quite useful if members could be alerted, but it doesn’t seem that this function exists. Hopefully they will soon update it and add the ability to alert people when they are assigned a task.

  3. Avishay Reply


    Can You tell Me how can I change a group type from a “mailing list group” to “collaborative inbox” kind of group?

    Thanks in advanced.

    • Google Gooru Reply


      You actually can’t change a group to a collaborative inbox group. The only way to make a collaborative inbox group is to create a new one.

      • Russell Reply

        You CAN [now?] change a group’s type to a Collaborative Inbox. An admin can change the group’s setting by going to the ‘information’ settings section then ‘advanced’. You’ll see the option to change it.

  4. Sean Reply

    We’re considering using the Collaborative Inbox as a helpdesk ticket system for our organization, but can’t seem to find answers to some questions. First, is there a way to set priorities for certain items? The only way I can seem to find for doing this would be to tag items and then use the filter to show only items tagged “important,” “long term,” etc.

    Second, what is the difference between a tag and a category? Are they interchangeable? Is there a way to show all of the items in a particular category? Thanks!

    • Google Gooru Post authorReply


      In terms of prioritizing, tagging may be your best option. Some other ways you can do it is by clicking on the star right next to the subject line. Also, once you open up an e-mail you can go to actions –> display at the top.

      As for categories and tags, here is a good explanation of the differenes:

      I hope these help, and let me know if you have any more questions.

  5. Elmos Woods Reply

    Let’s say you want to “convert” an existing shared mailbox (from Exchange) into a G-Group collaborative inbox; is there a way to import existing messages into the new group? Thanks!

    • Google Gooru Post authorReply

      Hey Elmos – Google actually just released an API for doing this type of migration into a Google Group just under a month ago –

      I don’t know of any tools that have been built to take advantage of this, but the API is available if that’s something you can do yourself.

      If not, I would recommend checking out ShuttleCloud. If they haven’t built a tool for this type of migration yet, I’m sure they will soon.

  6. luty Reply


    How can i give an access to users who are apart of a domain organization?
    For example mail

    I have setting “Allow new users outside the domain”.

    When i give link to group my users have communicate: Login in … and link to Google Apps Panel Domain.


  7. Bala Reply


    We are in need for creating a collaborative inbox using GoogleAPI, please help us is it possible to create and adhere the functions of collaborative inbox. Thank you

  8. Lisa Reply

    Is there a way to send automatic canned responses from a collaborative inbox, and also, is there a way to turn off conversation mode in a collaborative inbox?

    • Sal Reply

      Did you ever find an answer to this question? I would really love to know the same.

      Or at least find a way to remove the “complete” tag when we get a reply.

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