8 Easy Ways to Use a Text Expander To Improve Your Productivity – Typedesk

As many would agree, one of the keys to improving one’s productivity is to be able to automate repetitive tasks and allow yourself to focus on things that are more important. I love my work, but there are two things that I hate about it: emails and typing out long, repetitive phrases.

Last year, I found out about Typedesk, a text expander app that allows me to tackle both of these problems. What’s even better is that I can group them into folders and share them with specific teams in my business – team productivity leveled up ⏫

In this article, I will cover some specific use cases that my team and I have found helpful using Typedesk.

What is a text expander?

A text expander is a tool that allows you to type at a much faster rate with fewer mistakes by automatically expanding abbreviations, acronyms, and other commonly used words.

Think of the long responses to the same question that your customers ask on a daily basis. Instead of typing it out, you can enter a short command such as “:missingshipment” and Typedesk would automatically replace it with a fully written response to the customer query, from the initial apology and acknowledgment of the problem to offering a solution and even your email signature.

Why use a text expander?

It’s simple: It’s 2022, and if you are still typing out responses like the example above, you either need to hire someone to do it for you or get an app to store these responses.

In the former case, the person you hire would also be able to benefit from using such app.

Doing repetitive tasks and physically typing out these things can significantly reduce the quality of work, as your brain is constantly occupied by these hard-to-remember phrases and jargon. Imagine trying to remember a long line of code while trying to come up with a creative solution to a challenging problem.

In short, using a text expander tool like Typedesk can help you to save time and maintain accuracy.

There are a number of text expander apps on the market, but I love Typedesk for its robust set of features, great UI and ease of sharing between teams. Here’s how we’ve been using it over the last year:

1. Simply pasting texts and/or images

using a text expander tool to explain about how to opt into our back in stock alert
Explaining how to get notifications when a product is back in stock

This use case is quite common and can be great for your Customer Service team as they often need to use canned responses frequently:

using a text expander app to respond to complaints about a damaged/defective item
Responding to complaints about a damaged/defective item

2. Pasting with a variable

copying and pasting discount codes
Sharing a custom discount code

Again, think about the possibilities here, where they can store different answers for similar questions. All it takes is ~2 minutes of setting up.

Eg: The customer’s question was: Where was your product made?

using variables in the text expander app
Answer variables depending on the material

3. Pasting with multiple variables

When you’re creating product titles for your listings on Amazon, Etsy etc., the titles are usually pretty long (for keyword reasons). Working on 20+ SKUs can be a pain. Watch how I use Typedesk to speed this up.

Here’s the output (I highlighted the variables below)👇🏼

Impack Biodegradable Mailers – 6″x9″ 100 pack – Tamper-Evident & Self-Sealing Shipping Envelopes for Small Businesses – Printed, Waterproof Mailing Bags – Tear & Puncture-Proof – Camelia bloom

quickly creating product titles on the fly
Creating product titles on the fly

4. Pasting codes & markups

I’m not a coder, but I can image this would be super helpful to save long lines of codes when you’re multitasking and are buried between multiple windows.

For me, I’m using it for short commands that I cannot remember (I have a memory of a goldfish)

Inserting the Unsubscribe link with Typedesk
Inserting the Unsubscribe link

Other use cases:

  • 5. Storing addresses: Our warehouses, suppliers (in different languages), PO box,… you name it.
  • 6. Calendar links
  • 7. Company legal info (VAT number, Trademark number, etc.)

And finally, the most obvious one that I actually remembered last to implement: Saving your email addresses, so you don’t have to type them (I also realized at this point that they have recently rolled out Dark mode and it’s awesome)

Using a short command to bring up all your emails


Typedesk has a Free plan where you can save up to 10 templates and a 30-day free trial, so you can fully test out all the features.

Typedesk pricing
Typedesk pricing

Typedesk’s current pricing is very affordable at $5/user/month. It is relatively cheap since its arguably biggest competitor is charging $3.33/user/month on the Individual plan but $8.33 on the Team plan. Both of these do not offer as many features as Typedesk, with a much more dated UI.

If each of your staff can save just 30 minutes every week by using Typedesk to cut down the time they have to find the templates from their Notes app or wherever else they are saving them, it would already be well worth the cost.

At the point of writing this article, they are preparing to roll out the mobile app, and that would be another major benefit since you can pull out your saved commands even on your phone!

Check out Typedesk here

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