How To Save Your Gmail Messages as PDFs and Store in Google Drive
You can save all your Gmail messages as PDFs to your hard drive.
When you have a PDF file of an email, you can easily transfer it, print it, and review it without losing any content bar file attachments. If you have to sort or archive some of your emails for later use, you can store them in your Google Drive too.
There are different ways to convert your emails to PDF and store them to your Google Drive. You can do everything manually, which takes some time but doesn’t require any extensions.
If you don’t have patience or just prefer an easier way of solving this problem, there are add-ons that can help you.
Manual Conversion and Storage
You can manually save an email as PDF on both a computer and a smartphone.
To save your emails to PDF, you need to have Backup & Sync from Google installed on your computer. This will create a separate Google Drive folder on your computer.
- Open your Gmail in Chrome.
- Find an email that you would like to save as a PDF.
- Open the email and click on the ‘Print All’ button (printer icon).
- Set up ‘Printer Name’ to be ‘Print to PDF’. Click ‘OK’ and a new window will open.
- In this window, find your Google Drive folder, type e-mail name, and press ‘Save’.
- Look at your Google Drive and you should find a PDF version of your email.
Alternatively, in case you don’t have Backup & Sync installed, you can save the PDF anywhere on your internal drive and then manually upload it to your Google Drive account.
But if you have a Google Drive account, it would be good to also have Backup & Sync on your computer. This way, you can easily back up all the files from your computer and avoid any data loss.
Converting email manually to PDF on smartphone follows a similar procedure.
- Open the Gmail app.
- Locate your email.
- On the top-right press the ‘More’ icon (three vertical dots) and tap ‘Print All’.
- Choose ‘Save as PDF’ and press the yellow download icon.
- If you are logged in to your Google Drive account, you will see an option to save it there. You can also save it to your internal storage and then just upload it to your Drive.
Conversion and Storage via Chrome Add-On
If you find the manual way exhausting, you can simply use a Chrome extension that makes downloading PDFs possible with just one click. This is how you do it:
- Go to the Save emails to Google Drive extension page on the Chrome Web Store.
- Click ‘Add to Chrome’. The extension will install on your browser.
- Log in to your Gmail account, check the messages that you want to save to PDF, and click on the small Google Drive icon above.
- From the dropdown menu, choose ‘Save each conversation into a separate PDF’.
The emails you selected should appear on your Google Drive as PDF files. Before that, you may be prompted to authorize the extension and give it access to your Google Drive. If so, click on ‘Add Google Drive Account’ and wait to be redirected to your Drive. Once there, click on the blue ‘Allow’ button on the bottom-right and you will be taken back to your inbox. From now on, all your messages should be saved directly to your Google Drive.
This extension is free to use if you want to save up to 50 emails per month. If you want to download more, you may need to opt for a premium version.
The extension does not use any third-party servers or converters. Thus, it doesn’t violate your privacy, so you don’t have to worry when you convert your mail to PDF.
Storing Multiple Emails in a Single PDF
Thanks to this extension, you can add multiple emails to just one PDF file and store it. This means that even with the free version you can save more than 50 emails, but you will have to sort them together into a big PDF file.
This is how you do it:
- Once you install the extension, find all the emails that you want to save together.
- Select the messages by clicking on the checkboxes next to each of them.
- Click on the Google Drive icon and from the dropdown menu select ‘Merge all conversations into one PDF’.
- You will find a single PDF file with your selected conversations in your Google Drive.
With all emails from one contact available in a single PDF file, finding a specific piece of information will be much easier than using Gmail’s search function and having to individually open dozens of messages to find what you need.
Simple But Effective
Both these methods are simple, whether you like saving PDFs manually or you prefer using extensions. Converting your emails to PDF and organizing them on your Drive can save you a lot of time, especially when looking for some important message you’ve received a while ago. Not only that but you will also have backup copies of all your important messages in case you accidentally delete one of them.