How to group contacts in Gmail

GoogleApps_Aug26_AEmail was a disruptive technology when it first launched by giving users around the globe a way to instantly communicate as long as they were connected to the Internet. One of the more popular features of all email programs is the ability to group your contacts together in order to reach a large group with the same email far easier. If you are a Gmail user do you know how to create email groups from your contacts?

Here is an overview of how you can group contacts together with Gmail.

About Gmail’s Contacts

Gmail has a Contact Manager where all of your contacts’ information is stored. To view your contacts, you can open Gmail, click on the arrow beside Mail or Gmail (located above the Compose button) and select Contacts.

In the window that opens you will notice a couple of things: If you have a Google+ account the email and contact info of people you have put into your circles will be here. Also, if you have linked a mobile device to your account, the stored numbers and contacts will be under My contacts. Gmail also tracks contacts you have emailed but not saved under Other contacts.

From the Contact Manager window you can add, delete and edit contacts; and create groups.

How to create and manage contact groups

If you would like to group certain contacts together you first need to create a New Group which can be done by:

  1. Going to your Contact Manager by clicking on the arrow beside Mail or Gmail (located above the Compose button) and selecting Contacts from the drop-down menu.
  2. Scrolling down and clicking on New Group…
  3. Entering a name for the group and hitting Ok.

You will notice the name of the group appear under My Contacts in the left-hand menu bar. Clicking on the group, you will notice that it is empty. You now need to add contacts to your group. This can be done by:

  1. Finding the contacts in your contact list. Note: Any contacts from any list can be added to your new group.
  2. Clicking on the box beside their name. Multiple people can be selected at once.
  3. Selecting the Groups button from the top menu bar. It looks like three stick figure people and is located to the right of Contacts.
  4. Ticking the group you just created.

You should see the number beside the group name increase by the number of contacts you have added. Clicking on the group name will allow you to see who is in the group. If you make a mistake or would like to remove someone from the group simply click on the contact and look for the blue highlighted group name below their name. Click on this and and select Remove from group.

You can also delete a group by clicking on it and selecting More followed by Delete group. Don’t worry, your contacts won’t be deleted, just this group.

Uses for contact groups

There are a few ways you can use contact groups. The most obvious being as a mailing list. If you have an email that you would like multiple people to receive on a regular basis, put their addresses in a group. From there create the email and in the subject line enter the name of the group and select if from the drop-down menu. The whole list will automatically be added to the To: field.

You can also create a group of colleagues from one department or team. This will make it easier to communicate with the whole group at once. Another use for groups is to schedule meetings. When scheduling a meeting in Calendar, you can enter the group name to invite all people in that group to the meeting, instead of having to manually enter their names one by one.

If you would like to learn more about groups or how to manage your contacts in Gmail, please contact us today.

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