The Sweep feature was recently introduced to Outlook on the Web (formerly known as Outlook Web App) along with a wave of updates that enhanced Outlook for Office 365. It’s hard to miss in the new UI, but some Outlook users may overlook its power.

In fact, Sweep can help you manage your inbox with a simple set of actions.

What Sweep can do

When you select a message and click the Sweep icon, you’ll see four options based on the sender of that email.

  • Delete all messages from the Inbox folder (from that sender)
  • Delete all messages from the Inbox folder and any future messages (from that sender)
  • Always keep the latest message (from that sender) and delete the rest
  • Always delete messages (from that sender) older than 10 days

It’s up to you how and when to institute these rules, but one great use is for the ubiquitous coupon and sale emails that many of us get. Perhaps you do want to stay informed about deals at your favorite store, but after 10 days, many of those emails become outdated. You could choose the final option, Always delete messages older than 10 days, and you no longer have to take any action on those outdated emails–Sweep takes care of it for you.

Once you institute a Sweep rule, you’ll be able to see it by clicking on View rules in the sweep dialog box, or go to Options -> Mail -> Inbox and sweep rules.


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4 thoughts on “How to Use Sweep to Clean Up Your Office 365 Inbox

  1. Doug R. Reply

    One nice thing I found out about Sweep is that you can also create sweep rules for other folders. I.e., if you have inbox rules set up to move certain emails into other folders to have them available just in case, you can select an email in that folder and use it to create a sweep rule as well.

  2. Ashley Reply

    I used to have/use the sweep feature all the time but now I cannot find it and articles from Microsoft explaining how to use it (which tell you where to locate it) are incorrect. Anyone know if this feature is still available and if so, where it is actually at?

    • Ashley Reply

      I just answered my own question. Apparently, you can no longer select multiple messages from different senders to use the sweep feature on at the same time. Now you can only select one sender at a time and sweep those emails. So it now takes you much longer to clean up your inbox.

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