How to Create a Distribution List in Gmail in 2 ways

David Hughes
David Hughes
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Did you know that Gmail offers a feature similar to Outlook’s Distribution Lists? 🤔 Many Gmail users are still in the dark about this handy function. Let’s dive into how it works and how you can use it to streamline your email communication!

What Are Gmail Distribution Lists and What’s Their Purpose?

Ever wondered how to send an email to multiple people without typing each address? 🤔 That’s where Gmail’s version of Distribution Lists comes into play! Originally from Microsoft Outlook—the world’s leading email client—this feature lets you blast emails to many recipients at once.

Here’s how Gmail Distribution Lists save you time:

  • Family Events: Imagine you’re inviting 30 family members to a birthday bash. Instead of typing each email individually, you pop the list name into the recipient box and—voila!—invite sent to all. 🎉
  • Work Communications: Need to update your entire team or different departments regularly? Create a contact group (just like a Distribution List) and send updates in a snap, keeping everyone in the loop effortlessly. 📧

Note: While Gmail doesn’t call it a “Distribution List,” the functionality exists under the guise of a contact group—it works just the same!

Follow These Steps to Create a Distribution List in Gmail

Creating a distribution list in Gmail is a breeze! Follow these easy steps to get started:

  • Log In: Access your Gmail account.
  • Open Contacts: Click on the app menu and select Contacts.
  • Create a Label: Hit the Create label button.
  • Name Your Label: Give your new label a meaningful name.
  • Select Contacts: Return to the Contacts page and pick the contacts you wish to add to your list.
  • Manage Labels: Click on Manage labels.
  • Apply Label: Choose your newly created label and click Apply.

🔍 Pro Tip: If you’re dealing with a large number of contacts, use the search bar at the top of the Contacts page to quickly find them. For instance, to filter out work colleagues, search using your company’s domain name. This trick can save you tons of time!

Using Distribution Lists in Gmail

Ready to put your newly created Distribution List to work? Just follow these simple steps to send out your message:

  • Log In: Jump into your Gmail account.
  • Compose a Message: Click on Compose to start a new email.
  • Address Your Email: Type the name of your contact group into the To field.
  • Write Your Email: Draft your message just like any other email.
  • Send It Off!: Hit Send, and your email will zoom off to everyone in the group.

The cool part? Everyone gets the email but no one sees who else it was sent to. 🕵️‍♂️

Editing Distribution Lists in Gmail

Got your Gmail contact group set up? Great! Now, let’s make sure you know how to tweak it by adding or removing contacts as needed. Here’s how:

To Remove a Contact from Your Distribution List:

  • Log In: Access your Gmail account.
  • Navigate to Contacts: Open the Gmail menu and select Contacts.
  • Edit Your List: Choose the label you want to modify.
  • Select the Contact: Find and select the contact you wish to remove.
  • Manage Labels: Click on Manage labels.
  • Remove the Contact: Uncheck the label assigned to this contact.
  • Apply Changes: Hit Apply.

To Add a Contact to Your Distribution List:

  • Log In: Go to your Gmail account.
  • Access Contacts: Open the menu and select Contacts.
  • Choose Contacts: Pick the contacts you want to include.
  • Manage Labels: Click on Manage labels.
  • Select the Label: Choose the appropriate label.
  • Confirm: Click Apply.

👀 Remember: It’s a good idea to periodically review your contact groups to ensure they include only the intended recipients. This prevents any awkward accidental emails!


Now that you’re equipped with the know-how to create, use, and edit Gmail Distribution Lists, you’re all set to manage your emails more efficiently than ever before! Whether it’s sending out party invites or making sure your entire team is updated, Gmail’s contact group feature simplifies mass communication without the fuss.

Remember, keeping your distribution lists up-to-date is key to ensuring that the right people get the right messages. Take a moment now and then to review your lists—it’s a small step that makes a big difference in effective communication. Ready to become an email pro? 🌟 Dive in and see how much time you can save with this savvy email hack!


What is a Gmail Distribution List?

A Gmail Distribution List, also known as a contact group, allows you to send emails to multiple recipients simultaneously without entering their email addresses individually each time.

How do I create a Distribution List in Gmail?

To create a Distribution List, log into Gmail, go to Contacts, click on ‘Create label’, name your label, select contacts, and apply the label to these contacts.

Can I send an email to a Distribution List without others knowing who is on the list?

Yes, when you send an email to a Distribution List, recipients will not see who else the email has been sent to. Each recipient sees only their own email address.

How do I add someone to an existing Gmail Distribution List?

To add a new contact to a Distribution List, go to Contacts, select the contacts you want to add, click on ‘Manage labels’, choose the desired label, and then click ‘Apply’.

How can I remove someone from a Gmail Distribution List?

To remove someone, navigate to Contacts, select the label, choose the contact, click on ‘Manage labels’, remove the contact from the label, and click ‘Apply’.

Why should I periodically check my Gmail Distribution Lists?

Regularly checking your Distribution Lists helps ensure that they only include the intended recipients, preventing misdirected emails and keeping your communications accurate and relevant.

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