How To Merge Duplicate Contacts in Outlook?

Last Updated on October 1, 2023 by Amit Bansal

Microsoft Outlook’s contact management system efficiently organizes all your contacts.

Not only can you create, import, and export contacts, but there’s more to it than meets the eye.

Many of its features remain underutilized by users.

For instance, with a bit of ingenuity, you can merge multiple duplicate contacts into a single entry.

This article is all about Outlook Merge Contacts With Same Name, you will find how you can check your Outlook contacts for duplicates and merge.

Duplicate contacts in Outlook, Reasons Behind It!

Numerous questions may arise when you encounter duplicate contacts in Outlook. While having duplicates isn’t inherently problematic, they often clutter your contact list for various reasons.

Fortunately, solutions such as deleting or merging these duplicates are available, and this article delves into just that.

  • Drag and Drop: In Outlook, users often drag a message to the contacts icon in the navigation bar to create a contact for the email sender. Repeating this action for the same message can lead to duplicates. Additionally, when manually creating contacts, it’s easy to accidentally create multiple entries for the same individual. Even slight variations in contact information, due to misspellings for instance, are treated as separate entries, even though they technically refer to the same person.
  • Multiple Email Address: In today’s digital age, it’s common for individuals to have multiple email addresses. Consequently, if you receive an email from a different address belonging to the same person (be it their official or personal email), Outlook might create an additional contact entry for them. This can inadvertently lead to duplicated contacts.
  • Synchronization: Every time you connect your device with a laptop or mobile set or social media websites like (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn) results in duplicate contacts.
  • Import and Export: Exporting contacts from different areas and importing in Outlook produces duplicate contacts due to the same person being listed in distinct address books with different names.
  • Corporate users often encounter multiple address books on their Exchange servers, which can also lead to duplicated contacts.

Outlook resists in case you try to create manual contact with the same credentials as multiple contacts of the same person.

Regardless of how duplicate contacts find their way into your system, the pressing question is, “How can you delete, remove, or merge these duplicates in Outlook?

Here, we provide a step-by-step guide to address this issue.

How To Merge Duplicate Contacts in Outlook?

While attempting to create contacts in various formats, Outlook often has safeguards to prevent duplications (a testament to its efficiency).

However, minor variations in contact details can sometimes bypass these safeguards, leading to multiple saved contacts in Outlook.

For example, entries like “Amit Bansal,” “Amit Kumar Bansal,” and “Amit K Bansal” can all coexist, resulting in unintended duplicates.

Export contacts into CSV format

Here are a few steps to get rid of it:

Go to Outlook contacts from the navigation bar in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen.

Create a new Contacts folder by clicking “New Folder” from the list, and clicking the right mouse button on your current Contacts folder.

Create a new Contacts folder

Create New Folder Dialog box appears, Name the folder >> Hit OK

To consolidate multiple contact folders into one, create a new folder. After selecting the desired contacts, right-click and select ‘Move‘ from the dropdown menu.

Alternatively, you can use shortcuts:

Press [Ctrl+A] to select all contacts from a specific folder and then [Ctrl + Shift + V] to transfer them to the newly established folder.

Create New Folder contacts

The subsequent step involves exporting the contacts to a .csv file. Begin by clicking on the ‘File’ tab located in the top left corner of the screen.

Then, select ‘Open and Export’ from the left-hand side. Finally, click on the ‘Import and Export Wizard’ to proceed.

import and export wizard
  • The Import and Export wizard opens up, it will walk you through the export process: you can check the major steps below.
  1. Export to a file.
  2. Comma Separated Values.
  3. Select the folder “Merge Contact”, which you created earlier.
  4. Browse and select the designation to save the (.csv) file.
  5. Click Finish to End.

Detailed step-by-step process – How to Export contacts from Outlook?

Import contacts from the CSV file

After you’re confident with your research and adjustments, follow these steps to reintegrate your contact data into Outlook using the Import and Export Wizard.

  • Click the File tab from the top left-hand corner of the screen.
  • Click Open and export >> Import and Export
import & Export
  • Select Import from another program or file, from the Import and Export Wizard dialog box.
  • Select ‘Comma Separated Values and click Next.
  • Click Browse to select your modified file.
  • Select the option “Do not import duplicate items” and click Next.
Do not import duplicate items
  • Select the Contacts folder, in which you like to import all your desired contact.
  • Click Finish to complete the import process.

Detailed step-by-step process – How to import contacts in Outlook?

Copy the contacts from the Duplicates folder back into your main Contacts folder

Now the last step needs to merge the newly created folder contacts with the old contacts folder to complete the step. Open your new folder which was imported from the above steps.

  • Open the ‘Merge Contact‘ folder. Use “Ctrl + A” Keyboard Shortcut to select all the contacts, then press “Ctrl + Shift + V”. After that, choose your original folder to move the contacts back into it.
  • This step encountered you, & you will see a prompt with two choices.
  1. Add new contact
  2. Update information on the selected contact

Choose any of the options:

  1. Update: Choose the Update option if these are duplicate contacts and you want to merge them.
  2. Add New Contact: Select this option in case the contacts are different.
  3. Update All: Choose it to quickly update all the duplicate contacts.
  4. Skip: Select this option for later review. It does not move any contacts.
  • Select Update information of selected contacts and click Update all.
  • The last step is to delete the ‘Merge Contact‘ folder.

Most of the time, the pain of every Outlook user is unbearable until the solution pops up, in this article, hopefully, a step-by-step process watches you through the solution.

How Google Mail (Gmail) helps to clean Outlook duplicate Contact

Today, most users have a Google email account, commonly known as Gmail, and often integrate their Gmail accounts with Outlook.

Google Mail can assist you in resolving the issue of duplicate contacts in Outlook.

Let’s Dive in and understand step by step method:

  • Next, sign in to your Gmail account and import the CSV file you previously exported from Outlook.
  • If your list contains duplicate contacts, you’ll receive a notification asking, “Now that you’ve imported, would you like to search for duplicates?”
  • On the sidebar on the left, click Merge & fix.
  • Google will display a list of identified duplicate contacts on the right side of the page. You have the option to click ‘Merge‘ for individual duplicate entries or ‘Merge all‘ to consolidate all the recognized duplicates simultaneously.

Once you’ve cleared the duplicates, it’s time to export your Gmail contacts back to Outlook. Here’s what to consider during this phase:

  1. Decide if you’re exporting all contacts or a specific group. If you aim to export only those contacts you imported from Outlook, choose the relevant ‘Imported‘ group.
  2. Opt for the Outlook CSV format to guarantee a seamless import back into Outlook.
  3. Finish the procedure by clicking the ‘Export‘ button.

Lastly, reintegrate the consolidated contacts into Outlook. To ensure you’re not adding any duplicates, be sure to choose the ‘Do not import duplicate items’ option.

How to Avoid Creating Duplicate Contacts in Outlook?

Once you’ve mastered the techniques to cleanse Outlook of duplicate contacts, and I’m confident that you’ve successfully removed any duplicates, it’s now time to discover a sustainable method to keep your address book tidy in the future.

  • Go to the File Tab
  • Click on Options from the left navigation panel, it is available slightly bottom of the panel.
  • Outlook Options appear, click on People.
  • Under Name and Filing, select the Check for duplicate contacts when saving the new contacts box.
  • Finally, click OK

This method enables Outlook’s automatic duplicate contact detection, preventing you from adding contacts with similar names or identical email addresses.

Conclusion

With Outlook’s robust features, merging duplicate contacts has become a streamlined process.

By consolidating these redundancies, users can ensure a smoother communication experience and reduce unnecessary clutter.

As we wrap up this guide, remember that regularly auditing and maintaining your contact list can save time and avoid potential mix-ups in the future.

With Outlook as your ally, a tidy address book is just a few clicks away!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are a few Frequently Asked Questions for more clarity on Merge Duplicate Contacts in Outlook.

Why do my Outlook Contacts keep duplicating on my iPhone?

Outlook contacts duplicating on an iPhone often result from multiple email accounts syncing the same contacts, sync errors with iCloud or other platforms, interference from third-party contact management apps, repeated manual contact imports, or issues arising from restoring multiple backups.

Addressing the source, such as streamlining syncing settings or using dedicated deduplication tools, can help mitigate this issue.

How do I find duplicate contacts in Outlook without deleting them?

To find duplicate contacts in Outlook without deleting them, open Outlook and navigate to the “People” or “Contacts” view.

Sort your contacts by name, which will group identical contacts together. By scrolling through the list, you can visually inspect and identify any duplicates.

However, remember not to delete or merge them unless you’re certain they are indeed duplicates.

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Amit Bansal

Hello, my name is Amit Kumar Bansal, and I am the founder of MailSmartly.com. Through this blog, I focus on Microsoft Outlook, offering insightful and informative content. Additionally, I produce educational videos on YouTube to further enhance the understanding of my audience. visit my YouTube Channel

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