Contact Groups in Microsoft Outlook (Windows)

A Contact Group (also known as a Distribution List) is basically a list of multiple contacts stored under a single name. (Similar to an Alias.) Once the group is created, it can be used in the To: field in an email client or when using the webmail client and the message is sent individually to each contact within the group. This saves a user from having to email the contacts separately, one-by-one. 

Ideally, Contact Groups can be used for all or specific members of a given department, contacts who work for a particular partner or outside entity, members of a group project or assignment, and more. 

When using protocols such as MAPI or EWS these groups offer 2-way syncing. That means that if the Contact Group is created in a desktop email client such as Outlook or eM Client, it will sync back to SmarterMail and show up as a contact. In addition, if the Contact Group is created within webmail, it will sync back to the desktop clients. (Microsoft has not implemented support for syncing Contact Groups over EAS, so they will not sync to mobile clients such as Outlook Mobile.)

Below are the steps for setting up a Contact Group in Microsoft Outlook for Windows. (NOTE: you will need to have your SmarterMail account synced via MAPI in order to sync Contact Groups to webmail, and vice versa.)

  1. With Microsoft Outlook open, navigate to the Contacts area.
  2. If multiple accounts have been added to eM Client, select the contacts folder for the account for which the Contact Group is being created.
  3. Next, click on Home in the menu bar. 
  4. Then, click on the down arrow next to the New Contact button. 
  5. Select Contact Group from the dropdown. The Contact Group window opens.
  6. Add a Name for the group.
  7. Next, add in the Members. Click on the Add Members button and select where you want to initially pull contacts from. (This can be changed once you start adding Members.)
  8. The Select Members: Contacts window opens. By default, all contacts in the particular Address Book you selected will be listed. You can simply type out the full email address, or select a contact from the list. In addition, you have the ability to search the contacts for a particular name.
  9. If necessary, a Note (or description) can be added to the group, in addition to any attachments.
  10. Once all contacts have been added, click the Save & Close button.
That's it! You've now successfully set up Contact Group (Distribution List) for your SmarterMail account in Microsoft Outlook for Windows.