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How to create an email group in Gmail (5 simple steps)

How to create an email group in Gmail (5 simple steps)

min read

Do you email the same group of people over and over? Be it a collection of work colleagues, newsletter subscribers, or even your extended family members, it’s common for people to send emails to the same group of folks.

But manually typing out dozens of names or email addresses in the “To:” line is time-consuming — and a good way to accidentally leave someone off of the email. 

Thankfully, Gmail has a built-in email group feature to simplify collaboration and communication between your team, friends, and family members.

Read on to learn more about this time-saving feature.

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What are the benefits of creating groups and team communication?

Before you send mass emails to the same group, it’s important to discuss why you want to build groups in Gmail in the first place.

Team communication has never been more essential because families are scattered around the world and work colleagues are, too. According to McKinsey, approximately 58% of the U.S. workforce now works remotely, at least sometimes. So, why create groups?

  • To make sure no one’s out of the loop: The larger your team, the easier it is to forget about people. If someone misses out on a critical Gmail group email, it’s not just hurt feelings you leave behind. People aren’t tuned in to the latest happenings of your team.
  • To increase employee engagement: You want your team to be engaged. It’s hard to do that when you don’t have a town square for your group members. Gmail groups serve as that town square.
  • To boost productivity: Teamwork makes the dream work, and it all begins with making sure everyone knows the top priorities so they can better focus their time. You don’t need high-ticket tools to make this happen. It can be as simple as building Google Groups, which you can access with the click of a button.
  • To build relationships: Positive workplace relationships create a happier workplace. Why? Co-workers who care about each other are more likely to go the extra mile for each other, preventing mishaps, missed deadlines, and conflict.
  • To spark innovation: Innovation, like inspiration, can come from anywhere, including people. Creating a group in Gmail is another way to build a collaborative space everyone can enjoy.

Communication is a vital skill for business success. Gartner goes so far as to say that poor communication alone accounts for 70% of corporate errors. Something as simple as putting your Google Contacts all in one place can go a long way to lowering that number.

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How to create a group in Gmail

With Google Groups, you can add multiple contacts to a single list. Click on this list once, and your next email will instantly populate with everyone on the list. As you can imagine, this saves time and helps organizations sort their entire company list by team and department with ease.

Let’s dig into how to create an email group in Gmail in five simple steps:

Step 1: Head to Google Contacts

The first step is to open Google Contacts. To do this, do one of the following steps:

  1. Type into your browser of choice.
  2. Download and open the Google Contacts app on your smartphone or tablet.
a screenshot of the Google Contacts page showing the list of contacts with their name and corresponding email

You might find a blank list of contacts if you've never used Google Contacts before. If so, head to the Frequent page to see a list of the contacts you email the most.

Step 2: Select contacts to add to your group

Which contacts do you want to add to your group?

Simply go down your contacts list, and click the checkbox next to their names. Alternatively, if you have a list of names you know you want, enter them all into the search bar at the top of the screen to find them that way.

Step 3: Click “Manage Labels” to create your group label

Finish selecting which contacts you’d like to add to your new email group, and then click the little tab that means Manage Labels at the top right of the screen.

a screenshot of the Google Contacts page showing the creation of a contact group, where contacts are selected and then labelled using the "Manage Labels" feature at the top right of the screen

Google Contacts will provide you with this dropdown menu, and from there, you can create a label for your group. In the future, you’ll select the label whenever you want to send a group email to that list.

Step 4: Name your label for ease of use

Give your group a name that resonates. Choose something memorable and relevant to the group's purpose to avoid confusion later.

For example, if you’re the CEO of a company, you may have labels like:

  • The Board of Directors
  • My Direct Reports
  • Finance
  • HR

Alternatively, you can divide labels based on the projects each person is focusing on. One contact can be in many groups, so feel free to add them to the groups that are most relevant to their work.

Enter your group name, click Save to add that label to each contact, and close the window.

Step 5: Type your group name in the Gmail recipient box to ensure it works

With that out of the way, it’s time to see your new group in action and enjoy the time-saving perks of not having to add several people manually as recipients. 

Return to your inbox and type the label name into the recipient box. If it works, the label should pop up. For example, here’s the “Cafe owners” group shown in Step 3 successfully showing up in Gmail. 

a screenshot of the Gmail inbox with an opened Compose window where the email recipient will be the email group labelled as "Cafe owners"

Click on Cafe owners, and you’ll instantly see everyone’s email addresses populate. You can rest easy knowing that when you press Send, everyone in your group will receive the email.

If you want to add contacts to that Gmail group later, here’s how to do it:

  1. Return to Google Contacts.
  2. Select the contacts you want to add.
  3. Click Manage Labels.
  4. Select the label of the Gmail group you want to add them to and press Apply.

Yep, it really is that simple.

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How to send group emails in Gmail

Creating a group is one thing, but sending a group email is another.

Gmail’s native interface simplifies sending a group email. Follow these steps to send messages to a new group.

Step 1: Open Gmail

Gmail supports group emails regardless of the device you’re using. Login to your Gmail account on any device, even if it’s not the same one you created the group on.

Step 2: Click “Compose” to create a new email

Sending an email to Google Groups works like sending one to an individual recipient.

Begin by clicking Compose at the top left of your screen to open a new message window.

Step 3: Enter the Gmail group name in one of the fields

Begin typing your group name in the relevant field, which could be:

  • “To”
  • “Carbon Copy (CC)”
  • “Blind Carbon Copy (BCC)”

Gmail should provide suggestions once you start typing the name of your group. Click on the group you want to send the message to, and the field will automatically populate with recipients. You can also add multiple Gmail groups as recipients if you want to email both the Finance and Legal departments, for example.

Pro tip: If you regularly send mass emails company-wide, create one enormous contact list under a single group email label to save yourself time.

Step 4: Write your message and send your email

Now that you’ve selected your group, write and send a message. Nothing changes here. Type your message, hit Send, and your entire team will receive the same message.

And that's it. You’re done.

Simple, right?

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Quickfire tips for group emails in Gmail

Making the most of group emails is about more than saving time with neatly organized contacts; it’s about improving how your teams get things done.

Here’s some advice for making the most of this feature:

Clean your lists

Regularly update your groups with new contacts, remove duplicates, and remove contacts who don't need to receive communications anymore.

This goes beyond organization and ventures into company security. The last thing you want is to discuss a sensitive project in a group email with someone who’s no longer with the company or send spam to someone who’s still there, but perhaps switched departments.

Go through your email groups using the same steps as before and ensure everyone who is supposed to be on the list is. And on the flip side, remove those who shouldn't be there.

Boost opens with a snappy, descriptive group name

Groups are irrelevant if people don’t use them, so make sure people are enabled on how to use them most effectively and that everyone understands the purpose of each group.

We recommend keeping things short, specific, and even fun. Some group name examples could include:

  • Questions for Support
  • Marketing Brain Trust
  • Board Meeting Prep Crew

Welcome new members with email sequences

Did you know 87% of people report feeling nervous about starting a new job? That’s why it’s so important to calm your new hires’ nerves with email sequences that ease them into their new gig.

Examples of automated emails to Google Group members of new hires might include:

  • Introductory emails
  • Links to resources
  • Reminders about locations/meeting times

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Improve Gmail communication with Streak

Gmail’s group emailing capability is just one of many reasons it’s the most popular email platform on the planet. Even still, managing your email threads, contacts, and groups can be a hassle.

If it’s time to improve how you navigate your inbox, Streak is the tool for you. Our robust platform keeps more than 750k+ people organized in their Gmail inboxes with features like email filtering, link tracking, and sorting, as well as better contact management

Wrangle your email inbox once and for all with Streak. Try it for free today with no catch. Plus, it only takes 30 seconds to get started!

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