How to Change the Subject Line in Gmail


The subject line if the first part of your email that your recipients will see, so it’s important to get it right. Here’s how to change it in Gmail.

Do you spend hours agonizing over creating the perfect subject line for your emails? Or do you just type the first thing that comes into your head?

A subject line that made sense at the start of an email thread can become irrelevant the longer you type. If the tone of your email doesn’t suit your subject line, your email isn’t going to hit the right mark.

This is why it’s important to know how to change the subject line in Gmail. Here’s what you’ll need to do.

Why Change the Subject Line in Gmail?

An email subject line tells the recipient what to expect from the content of the email. Why would you ever need to change it?

There are a number of situations where changing the subject line of an email makes sense. Some of the most common include:

  • An error in the original subject line
  • The email thread has shifted away from the topic of the original subject line
  • The subject line contains a date that is no longer relevant
  • The subject line is missing a crucial piece of information
  • In order to make the thread easier to find in the future

Why Isn’t It Obvious How to Change the Subject Line in Gmail?

On some email clients, it’s obvious how to change the subject line for any email that you send. This isn’t the case with Gmail.

The reason that changing the subject line in Gmail is less obvious is because of the way that Gmail handles conversation threads. All of the messages under the same subject line are considered part of one long email chain. In other email clients, threads can be viewed as a group, but each message is still an individual email.

When you change the subject line in Gmail, the entire conversation becomes a new thread under the new subject line, but all of the conversation history will still be maintained.

How to Change the Subject Line in Gmail

If you want to change the subject line in Gmail, it’s quick and easy to do once you know how.

To change the subject line in Gmail:

  1. Open the conversation thread that you want to change the subject line for.
  2. Click Reply or Reply All at the bottom of the page.
    Reply to all emails in Gmail
  3. Press the Type of Response button.
    Selecting a response type in Gmail
  4. Click Edit Subject.
    Edit subject in Gmail
  5. You will now see the subject line highlighted.
    A Gmail email subject
  6. Edit the subject to your new subject line.
    Edited subject line in Gmail
  7. Press Send.
    Sending a Gmail email

Your email will now be sent with the new subject line. All of the previous messages will become part of a new thread with the updated subject line.

Taking Control of Your Gmail Inbox

It’s not obvious how to change the subject line in Gmail but once you know how, it’s simple to do.

There is plenty more you can do to take control of your Gmail account. You can change your name in Gmail if you want it to display differently in messages. Once you’ve done so, you may also want to change your Gmail signature or add an image to your signature. You can even change font in Gmail to make your messages stand out.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. vpeavey

    I often changed the subject line in my Outlook email as “notes to self” or to make something alphabetically sortable in a file where I stored said emails. This could be done without having to resend anything to anyone. Is there a way in Gmail to add acomment or some such without having to actually send again?

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