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Get more out of G Suite's Keep, Vault and Slides apps

Start making the most of features such as Q&A sessions, shared notes and Vault audits

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Most small-business owners are familiar with G Suite, Google's affordable and easy-to-use collection of professional productivity apps. However, the suite’s range of capabilities is so extensive, even those who use the apps daily may not be aware of all their features. Here are three valuable but underused components of G Suite: Slides, Keep and Vault.


You've likely used Slides to create custom decks for colleagues and clients, but did you know it includes several specialized templates for particular kinds of presentations? If you click Template Gallery at the top right of the splash screen, you'll find sophisticated-looking predesigned themes and outlines for everything from case studies and status reports to pitches and product prototyping. Picking the right template for the job can be a major timesaver.

When you get in front of your audience, you might want to keep in mind Slides' ability to facilitate live Q&A sessions. At any point during your presentation, you can jump into Audience Tools in the Presenter View and click Start New to create a new Q&A session. Audience members can submit questions to you through the app using their own devices, and you can make the queries appear onscreen as you address them.


Google's digital note-taking app is a great way to create, edit and access simple notes anywhere you happen to be. But there's a lot more to it. For example, you can use Notes to collaborate with your team while working on files in other G Suite apps. Simply call up a shared note in a side panel – which your colleagues can see – and edit the document as a group.

Handier still is Keep's ability to use location-based alerts to remind you about important matters – such as meetings or appointments – exactly when and where you need to be reminded. Worried you'll forget to ask a specific question or raise an issue when you see a client? You can set an alert to pop up when you approach a key location, such as an office building or a work site.


Vault makes it easy to hold onto old data for corporate recordkeeping, and to create custom rules for the sort of information you might want to keep for a specific amount of time. Vault ensures you have no trouble finding exactly what you're looking for via Google-powered searches that let you hone in on user accounts, dates and keywords using Boolean operators such as AND, OR and NOT.

Just as important – especially for legal or regulatory purposes – is Vault's ability to generate audit reports to track Vault users’ actions over specific periods of time. You're able to select users, date ranges and action types, conduct a search, then download the results as a CSV file compatible with any spreadsheet app. It's not the sort of feature you'll use every day, but you'll be happy it's there when you need it.

Looking for more information on other helpful G-Suite features? Click here.