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Extending Gmail with Google Workspace add-ons

The purpose of many emails is to get the recipient to do a specific task or reach a goal, such as adding a calendar event, filling out a form, making a reservation, or using other applications. However, recipients then have to complete the task without any further prompting, often doing a number of manual steps.

You can save time and effort for your users by automating these tasks with Google Workspace add-ons. When a user reads or composes a message in Gmail, a Google Workspace add-on can present an interactive, customized UI that lets the user act on the message in various ways, such as by:

  • Displaying additional information for the user in the Gmail UI.
  • Connecting to non-Google services, to retrieve information or take other actions.
  • Providing the means to control the add-on behavior or send information to another service.

G Suite add-ons can define the following kinds of extensions within Gmail:

In addition, G Suite add-ons that extend Gmail do so on both desktop and mobile clients.

Gmail homepages

Gmail supports displaying G Suite add-on homepages. To show your add-on's common homepage in Gmail simply make sure there is a field in the add-on's manifest.

Alternatively, add a gmail.homepageTrigger to the add-on manifest to provide a Gmail-specific homepage.

In either case, you must provide the name of a homepage trigger function in your add-on's script project. This function is automatically called to build the Gmail homepage when it is needed. You must implement this function to build and return a single Card or an array of Card objects that make up the homepage. The homepage trigger function is passed an event object as a parameter that contains some general information such as the client's platform. You can use the event object data to tailor the construction of the homepage.

See what you can make

G Suite add-ons are built using Apps Script, and their interfaces defined using the Apps Script Card service. See Building G Suite add-ons for an overview. G Suite add-on behavior is configured using a manifest, which includes Gmail-specific sections.

When configuring your G Suite add-on to extend Gmail, you must decide what interfaces to create for your add-on and what actions it can take. See the following guides for more information: