Allow-listing Emails in Inboxes

Whitelist, allow-list, welcome-list, Gmail, Outlook, Mac

Updated over a week ago

What is an Allow-List?

To add someone to your Allow-list (sometimes called a Welcome-list and formerly called a Whitelist) is a list of approved email senders. Emails from that sender are never moved to the spam folder. Instead, when a recipient allows an email address, they are confirming that they know and trust the sender. This tells an email server (like Gmail) to move messages to the inbox directly.

Instructions for Gmail

Gmail is one of the most popular email services on the market, and the Gmail client is used by both individuals and businesses. To set your email allow-list in Gmail, follow these simple steps.

  1. First, find the email you received from the sender you want to allow-list. Add the sender to your contact list.

  2. Then, create a custom Gmail filter. To do so, click on the gear icon, and select Settings.

  3. Select filters and blocked addresses from the navigation bar at the top of the page, then click on Create a new filter.

Scroll down and click create a new filter for your email whitelisting notes

Add the email address you’d like to allow-list in the “From” field, then click Create filter.

Enter the email address you'd like to whitelist in the 'From' field and then click 'Create filter'

Finally, check Never send it to Spam, (optional: select Always mark it as important), then click Create filter. From there, you will be good to go.

Check never send it to spam, and then create filter

Instructions for Microsoft

The process is fairly similar for Microsoft Outlook, though there are two ways to accomplish the task:

  • Select a message from the sender. Click through the following links to allow-list the sender: Home > Junk > Never Block Sender or Never Block Sender’s Domain


  • Select a message from the sender. Right-click the selected message and choose Junk > Never Block Sender from the dropdown menu. From there, a dialog box will notify you that the selected address has been added to your safe senders list.

Select "Never Block Sender" to establish valuable email whitelisting rules.

Instructions for Mac

Apple has always done things their own way, and allow-listing is no exception. Here are our quick steps for allow-listing a sender in Mac Mail.

  1. Select Mail > Preferences

  2. On the top of that window, click the Rules tab, then select Add Rule

  3. Set up the rule (use the following settings as an example):

    1. Description: BonterraTech
      If [any] of the following conditions are met: [From] [contains] [] Perform the following actions: [Move Message] to mailbox: [Inbox]

  4. Next, click OK to save the rule.

Setting up email whitelisting rules in Apple Mail is simple!

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