Sometimes you’ll find yourself needing to bulk delete emails from Gmail. Today, for example, I received a notification from Gmail that I was about to exceed my account storage quota.


Knowing that most of the older emails in my account were surplus to requirements I was fine with bulk deleting all emails from before the beginning of the year.

Here are the steps to bulk delete emails from Gmail.

Step 1:

To begin with, you need to define what emails need to be bulk deleted.

I searched for the keyword *before: 2016/01/01*. You can also use other keywords like from: to further refine the search based on Sender, or Subject: to select emails on subject line.


Once the search results are displayed, you can choose to delete them selectively or all at once.

Step 2:

Since I wanted to bulk delete all messages from my search – which spanned 150 pages – and not just the ones displayed on the current search I did the following.


  • Clicked on the Select box left of the Refresh button.
  • Click on the “Select all conversations that match this search” (you’ll find this on the yellow bar above the conversations).
  • Click on the Delete Button aka the trash can.

Bear in mind that doing a bulk delete in Gmail like like moves all deleted emails over to Trash. Since I wanted to free up storage space it was then necessary for me to clean out my trash. To clear Trash I went to the Trash folder and repeated a similar process from Step 2.