Gmail is so much more than a communication channel. In addition to being a secure and easy way to send and receive emails, Gmail enables you to save contacts, similar to what you do on your phone.
When you add contacts to Gmail, you add them to Google Contacts. This channel enables you to save phone numbers, email addresses, and names. Saving contacts makes sending emails easier since Gmail autocompletes the email address after you enter the first few letters. Additionally, saved contacts are automatically whitelisted, meaning their messages never end up in the spam inbox.
Below are comprehensive steps on how to add contacts to Gmail. Read on.
Method 1: Adding Contacts from Received Email
If you received an email from someone that’s not on your contact list, it is easy to add them to contacts through the email they sent. Here are the steps:
Step 1: Open your browser and then your Gmail account
Step 2: Open the email of the person you want to add to your contact list
Step 3: Click on the contact’s name or photo
Step 4: Click on the icon next to the name
You will have successfully added this sender to your contacts.
Method 2: Manually Adding Contacts to Gmail
Manually adding contacts means adding somebody who has not sent you an email to your contacts list. Here are the steps to follow:
Step 1: On your email page, click on the dots at the top right corner to open the Google menu
Step 2: Scroll down in the Google menu and click on contacts
Step 3: On the Google contacts page, click on create contact
Step 4: Select create a contact
Step 5: Enter the details of the new contact
Step 6: Click save
Step 7: Google informs you that you have successfully added the new contact
Here is a quick reference YouTube video we recommend to see a live demonstration of one of the methods for adding contacts to your Gmail.
Method 3: Adding Contacts to Gmail Using a Phone
Although you can access your Gmail account on your Android or iOS device, you can’t add contacts through Gmail. Instead, you will need the Google contacts app to add the contacts.
Unfortunately, this option is only available for Android devices. If you have an iOS device, you can only access Google Contacts by opening it via your web browser. If your Google account is logged in to that device, you won’t need to give your Google login details.
The process of adding contacts to your phone via the Google contacts app on Android or the Google contacts mobile web version on iOS is similar.
Here are the steps you follow:
Step 1: Open Google contacts on your iOS phone browser or the Google Contacts app on Android
Step 2: Click on the plus (+) at the bottom of the screen to add contacts
Step 3: Enter details on the new contact
Step 4: Click save
Method 4: Automatically Adding Contacts to Gmail
Google automatically saves the contacts of people you have interacted with in Google services. This is why you see an email of somebody you haven’t saved in your contacts list autofill when entering their address.
These contacts are saved in the ‘other contacts’ section. You can turn off this feature if you don’t want Google to automatically save your contacts. Here are the steps to stop automatically saving contacts to Gmail:
Step 1: Open Gmail and click on settings at the top right corner
Step 2: Select see all settings
Step 3: Scroll down to create contacts for auto-complete
Step 4: Select I’ll add contacts myself
Step 5: Click on save changes at the bottom
Method 5: Creating Group Contacts in Gmail
Grouping contacts helps you send emails to your family, friends, or colleagues without manually entering their contacts. Here are the steps to creating a group in Google contacts
Step 1: Open your browser and navigate to Google Contacts
Step 2: Select the contacts you want to include in the group
Step 3: Scroll down to Labels, then click Create label on the left-side menu
Step 4: Enter the name of the group and click save
After clicking save, you will have created a new group. You can also add more contacts to the group. Here are the steps you follow:
i) Open Google contacts and select the contact you want to add
ii) Click the third icon at the top to open a menu
iii) Select Manage labels and click the group you want to add it to
iv) Click apply
The contact you selected will be added to that group. Only the default address is added to the group if a contact in the group has several addresses.
Method 6: Importing Contacts to Gmail
If the contacts you want to add to Gmail are already saved somewhere else, you can import them to Gmail instead of saving them one by one. You can import contacts either from a file or another Gmail account.
Importing Contacts from a File
Step 1: Open Google contacts in your browser
Step 2: Click import
Step 3: Click Select file
Step 4: Select the file with the contacts and click open
Step 5: Click Import to import the file. You get a notification after they have imported
Method 7: Importing from Another Gmail Account
To import contacts from another Gmail account, you will need to first export these contacts to a file, then import the file using the method above. Here are the steps to follow:
Step 1: Open Google contacts of the account and click export
Step 2: Select the contacts you want to export
Step 3: Select Google CSV
Step 4: Click export
Step 5: Sign out and open the other account where you want to import the contacts
Step 6: Click import
Step 7: Select the file to import and click open
Step 8: Click import
If you try to import contacts either from a file or another Gmail account and it fails, there are several possible reasons for the failure:
- You are trying to import more than 3000 contacts at a time. If you have more than 3000 contacts to import, split them into several CSVs and import one at a time.
- The contacts you are trying to import are not formatted in vCard or CSV form. The file you import to Google contacts needs to be in either of these forms for it to work.
- You have attained the maximum number of contacts your Google contacts account can hold. Google contacts have a maximum of 25,000 contacts. Therefore, if you are likely to exceed this mark after you import, the import might fail.
Method 8: Syncing Google Contacts
When you sync contacts on your Gmail, you can access them on any device as long as you have the same Gmail account. This means you don’t have to save contacts on your computer and again on your phone.
Additionally, if you may edit a contact on a device, they are automatically updated on all devices with that account.
Syncing Google Contacts on a Phone
Step 1: Open the Settings app and go to Google
Step 2: Scroll down to settings for Google apps
Step 3: Select Google contacts sync
Step 4: Select Also sync device contacts
Step 5: Turn on Automatically backup and sync device contacts
Your contacts will be automatically saved and synced to your selected backup account. Here are some points to remember when syncing google contacts.
- Some phone models do not support contact syncing. If you do not have the option on your phone, it is possible that this feature is not supported on that model.
- When you sign out of your account on that device, you remove all contacts saved on the Google account. This helps prevent other people using your device from accessing your contacts.
- You cannot sync your contacts to a child’s account or an account you use for work or school (G suite account).
Adding contacts to Gmail means adding contacts to your Google account. You can add the contacts from a received email through Gmail or manually through Google contacts.
If you have contacts saved in another file or Gmail account, you can export them to your preferred account instead of saving them manually. Additionally, you can sync your contacts so that it is easy to access them across all your devices where you use that Gmail account.