All Articles
The complete guide to Google contacts backup

The complete guide to Google contacts backup

min read

In this digital age, our contacts have become invaluable assets, storing vital information about our personal and professional networks. However, losing these connections due to device failure or accidental deletion can quickly derail your plans for the day.

Safeguarding your contacts with consistent cloud syncing or regular manual backups will ensure your contacts are securely stored— even if you accidentally drop your phone from a fifth-story beach condo in the rain. (Ask me how I know. 🙃) Even if one device fails, you’ll still be able to see all of your contacts on another device.

In this guide, we’ll explore various methods you can use to safeguard your contacts so you never lose access. You’ll also learn how you can sync contacts across your entire team or organization, conduct a Google contacts backup, and even review your interaction history with each contact using Streak.

<a href="#whats-the-value" class="anchor-link">What’s the value of a Google contacts backup?</a>

<a href="#ways-to-backup" class="anchor-link">4 ways to backup and sync your Google contacts</a>

<a href="#how-to-sync-android" class="anchor-link">How to sync contacts on an Android device</a>

<a href="#how-to-sync-iphone" class="anchor-link">How to sync Google contacts with your iPhone or computer: Option 1</a>

<a href="#how-to-sync-ios" class="anchor-link">How to sync contacts on an iOS device: Option 2</a>

<a href="#how-to-export-contacts" class="anchor-link">How to export your contacts for backup</a>

<a href="#use-streak" class="anchor-link">Use Streak to manage your contacts in Gmail</a>

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="whats-the-value" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

What’s the value of a Google contacts backup?

Contact backups and synchronization offer you peace of mind by preserving your contacts in case you lose or damage a device. By syncing your contacts across multiple devices, you ensure seamless accessibility and continuity of communication. Backing up your contacts also lowers the risk of data loss, preventing unforeseen circumstances from disrupting your work. 

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="ways-to-backup" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

4 ways to backup and sync your Google contacts

Having a way to stay in contact with your loved ones and coworkers is essential. Luckily, there are several different methods to backup or sync your Google contacts. 

To clarify, when you sync contacts, you ensure that you have access to all of each contact’s data on every device. Even if you lose your phone, you can still sign in with your iPad or computer and see all of the information you need.

When you backup your contacts, you have an additional copy of your contact information in another place, often outside of the cloud. This file is basically a modern-day Rolodex—it’s a digital write-up of each contact’s name and associated information. 

For the balance of this article, let’s dig into how you can sync contacts on multiple devices and create a Google contacts backup in case you lose digital access. 

(Pro tip: We suggest you set up regular syncing and conduct every-so-often backups to save yourself any stress and ensure you always have access to your contact information.)

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="how-to-sync-android" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

1. How to sync contacts on an Android device

  1. On your Android tablet or phone, open the Settings app. 
  2. Select Google > Settings for Google apps > Google Contacts sync > Also sync device contacts > Automatically back up & sync device contacts.
  3. Turn on Automatically back up & sync device contacts. 
  4. Choose which Google account you’d like your contacts to be saved to. You can only save them to one account. 

How to stop saving device contacts as Google contacts on your Android device

  1. On your Android tablet or phone, open the Settings app. 
  2. Select Google > Settings for Google apps > Google Contacts sync > Also sync device contacts > Automatically back up & sync device contacts.
  3. Turn off Automatically back up & sync device contacts. 

Once you turn this function off, contacts that have already been saved as Google contacts will remain until you manually delete them. 

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="how-to-sync-iphone" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

2. How to sync Google contacts with your iPhone or computer: Option 1

Once you sync your Google contacts to multiple devices, you can access your contacts from any device where you’re logged into your Google account. This means you can update someone’s contact information on one device, and that updated information will instantly be reflected across all devices. 

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Scroll down and tap Contacts.
  3. Select Add account. If a Google account is already synced, you’ll tap Accounts.
  4. Tap Add account, then Google.
  5. Sign in to your Google account.
  6. Select the Google apps you want to sync.
  7. Tap Save
  8. Open your Contacts app to allow syncing to begin.

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="how-to-sync-ios" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

3. How to sync contacts on an iOS device: Option 2

This option works if you are a Google One member, which means you pay for additional storage for your Google account. 

1. Download or open the Google One app. 

2. Select View in the Sync box on the right. 

3. Select the Contacts option to check if sync is on. 

4. Tap Check status

5. Tap OK to allow Google One to access your contacts if you haven’t already. 

6. Wait for the app to check your sync status.

7. If your contacts sync is off, tap Set up sync

8. Tap Upload contacts. 

9. Follow the onscreen instructions to sync Google Contacts on your iPhone. 

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="how-to-export-contacts" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

4. How to export your contacts for backup

By exporting your contacts on a computer, you can transfer them to another email account. Since contacts can only belong to one account at a time, this Google contacts backup method comes in handy if you’re switching your primary email account, like in the case of a name change. 

  1. Go to Google Contacts.
  2. Select which contacts you want to export. To export all of them, check the box next to any contact. In the top left, click Selection Actions > All.
  3. Click the three dots at the top right to see More actions
  4. Click Export.
  5. Select Google CSV
  6. Click Export.

Note: If you have more than 3,000 contacts, you’ll have to split the list into smaller batches, or your export will fail. 

While this option is the most straightforward way to transfer your contacts from one email account to another, it’s also the best way to save them in case you somehow lose all of your cloud access.

Once you have your Google contacts backup as a CSV, you may want to save the file to an external hard drive or USB flash drive. Keep this physical copy somewhere safe as an additional fallback.

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="use-streak" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

Use Streak to manage your contacts in Gmail

If you want to effortlessly share contacts across your organization to manage your sales pipeline or team collaboration more efficiently, you need Streak.

Every contact has their own mini-profile page in Streak where you can see general contact information, as well as your team’s full interaction history with them. Using the interaction history, you’ll always have full knowledge of what past deals, opportunities, and support tickets are associated with prospects, so none of those important details fly under the radar.

In short, Streak gives you easy access to the maximum amount of information you need about each contact so you get the full picture of who you’re working with. This becomes wildly helpful when you’re chatting with half a dozen clients or prospects each day! Streak contacts are also sorted by organization, so you can see related contacts who share a domain and belong to the same company. Using a third-party integration, Streak also automatically enriches each contact’s information with publicly available data.

Plus, Streak contacts sync to iOS and Android devices using the Streak mobile app, so you can see all of this information no matter where you are. 

Think it’s time to step up how you manage your contacts and workflows in Gmail? Give Streak a try for free

Related articles

We're hiring

Come build something great with us.