Viewing Your Google Contacts in MacOS Contacts

Set up MacOS contacts to copy Google Contacts automatically

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Having up-to-date contacts everywhere you go is a snap when you set up macOS Contacts to mirror your Google Contacts. If you make a change to one of your contacts in Google Contacts or add or delete contacts, that information is synced to the macOS Contacts app seamlessly.

Back Up Your macOS Contacts Before Beginning

Before making any changes to the contacts on your Mac, it is a good idea to make a backup of your information so that you can restore everything to its current state if there is an error during the process. Back up your contacts in the Contacts app by going to File > Export > Contacts Archive > Save.

Screenshot showing how to backup contacts
Michael Archambault

Synchronize Gmail Contacts With macOS Contacts

If you don't use other Google services — such as Gmail — on your Mac, and you only want to add Google contacts to your macOS Contacts app, use the method directly below. Otherwise, if you already have Google services on your Mac, follow the next set of instructions.

  1. Open Contacts on your Mac.

  2. Select Contacts > Add Account from the menu bar.

  3. Choose the Google option, then select Continue.

    Screenshot of setting up Google contacts account
  4. Enter your Google Email Address and Password in the fields provided — if you use two-step verification, add an app password. Press Sign in.

  5. Select Sign in again.

  6. Under the Select the apps you want to use with this account window, ensure that the Contacts option is checked.

    Selecting Google Contacts option
    Michael Archambault
  7. Press Done.

The contact information from Google appears in the macOS Contacts application and can be accessed by clicking All Google on the left-hand side of the Contact window.

To view all of your contacts from every account at once, select the All Contacts option.

If You Already Have Google Services on Your Mac

If you already have Google services on your Mac, such as a Gmail account in the Mail app, the process of linking your address book with Google Contacts is much easier and only involves the selection of a checkbox.

  1. From the Contacts menu bar, choose Contacts > Accounts to open the internet accounts preferences.

    Screenshot of internet accounts pane
  2. Select Google in the list of accounts on the left of the window that opens.

  3. Place a check in the box next to Contacts in the list of available Google services and exit the screen.

Synchronizing vs. Importing Contacts

The process above shows how to synchronize your contacts with macOS; this method allows your Gmail contacts to remain on Google's servers, but any additions or changes will still appear on your machine. If you don't want to worry about moving your contacts around, with synchronization you can access your contacts on your computer running macOS.

On the other hand, importing allows you to completely merge your Google contacts with your macOS address book, a useful option if you are looking to move away from Google services but wish to keep your contacts. The process begins by exporting your Gmail contacts and then importing them to a new service.