How to Set the Priority of an Email in Outlook 2013

If you have been using Microsoft Outlook for at least a short period of time, then you have likely encountered a message with an exclamation point or an arrow next to it. This indicates that the sender felt their message has a level of importance outside that of a normal email.

You have the option of selecting between low importance or high importance, and this can be set on a per-message basis. Messages that are sent with high importance will be indicated with a red exclamation point, while messages sent with low importance will have a blue downward-facing arrow. The third level of importance, “normal,” is simply any message that is not sent with a low or high priority.

Setting the Priority Level for an Email Message in Outlook 2013

Note that these priority levels are typically only seen by other people using Microsoft Outlook. Many email providers will not indicate that a message was sent with any kind of priority level or adjusted level of importance.

  • Step 1: Open Microsoft Outlook 2013.
  • Step 2: Create a new email message by clicking the Home tab at the top of the window, then the New Email button in the New section of the Office ribbon.
create a new email
  • Step 3: Click the Message tab at the top of the window.
click the message tab
  • Step 4: Click the High Importance or Low Importance button in the Tags section of the ribbon.
set email priority level

You can then fill in the rest of the fields to send your email as normal.

Outlook users who receive your email messages will be able to identify their importance level by the icons identified below. As mentioned previously, the red exclamation point indicates a message that was sent with high priority, while the blue arrow indicates a message sent with low priority.


Is there an email message that you do not want to send until later in the day, or possibly on a different day entirely? This article will show you how you can delay a message’s delivery until a specific date and time.

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