How to Edit a Recipient's Email Address or Name in Gmail

Tweak a recipient's info right from the Compose screen

person typing email on laptop
skynesher / E+ / Getty

Given that most people have multiple email addresses nowadays — one for work and another for personal use, for example — Gmail likely has stored more than one for many of your contacts. As a result, Gmail might auto-populate the To, CC, or BCC field with the wrong entry as you begin to enter the name of your email recipient. However, Gmail makes editing this info quite easy right from the New Message window.

To change or edit the email address for a recipient when you write a new email or reply, you don't have to remove the recipient altogether or type it manually. Instead:

  1. Double-click the recipient whose address or name you want to edit.

    Gmail New Message window
  2. Make the desired changes to the recipient's name or address. As you enter a few letters in the To, CC, or BCC field, Gmail will present matching choices in a drop-down menu. Either select the appropriate address from the menu or continue entering the address manually.

    Gmail New Message window with dropdown To menu
  3. Select Enter.

If you suspect you clicked Enter with a wrong address, you may be able to unsend in Gmail if you act quickly.

Edit Contact Information

If you are attempting to email someone from your contact list, but that person's name or email address is not appearing as it should, it might be entered incorrectly in your Gmail contacts. Modifying the contact information could resolve the issue.

  1. Log into Gmail.

  2. Select the Google Apps menu in the upper-right corner and choose Contacts.

    You can also go directly to contacts.google.com. As long as you are logged into Google, your contacts will appear automatically. Otherwise, you will be prompted to log into your Google account.

    Screenshot of Contacts in Google Apps menu
  3. Hover over the contact you want to edit and select the Edit Contact icon on the right end, which looks like a pencil. The card for that contact will open.

    Screenshot of Edit Contact in Google Contacts list
  4. Change the name, email address or other information.

    You can enter a name in the File As field that helps you find the recipient more easily. The name entered in the First Name and Last Name fields will be displayed in the To, Cc or Bcc fields when you send the recipient an email message.

    Screenshot of Edit Contact card
  5. Select Save to apply the changes. The recipient's name and email address should appear correctly in messages going forward.