How to export and edit Google Contacts

Google maintains a list of your contacts automatically if you use company products such as Gmail, Google Plus and others.

This list grows over time and situations may arise where you may want to export the list of contacts, for instance for safekeeping or to import it in another program, application or web service.

This guide walks you through the steps of exporting all or select Google contacts.

The first thing you want to do is open the main Google contacts website:

You need to sign in to your Google account if you are not signed in already. Once done, all available contacts and people in Google Plus circles are listed.

google export

If you want to export all contacts, click on more on the page and then on export when the context menu is displayed. This opens the following popup menu.

The two core options that you have are to select which contacts you want to export and which format you want used for that.

export google contacts

Export Google Contacts options

The first option is simple: either select one of the available groups or keep all contacts selected instead. If you have selected contacts before, you can also select to only export those contacts.

Google supports three export formats that you can select between.

  • Google CSV is a specifically formatted comma separated values file that is ideal if you want to import the contacts back into a Google account. This is great for backup purposes for example.
  • Outlook CSV is the general purpose file. It is compatible with other programs such as Outlook, and the easiest to work with in editors.
  • vCard finally is designed for Apple products. Select it if you want to import the contacts to an Apple Address Book.

If you want to process the contacts in any way, select Outlook CSV. You can load the file in Microsoft Excel, Open Office or any other program that supports CSV files to edit it there.

Each contact is listed in a single row in the spreadsheet program so that it is relatively easy to remove contacts or edit information this way. Make sure you save the data as a csv file afterwards again.

Other options that you have are to split files if you need to do so, or sort files and export only a selection as a csv file.

This file can be imported again into a Google account or another application that supports the import of csv files.

This article was first seen on ComTek's "TekBits" Technology News


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