Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Combine & Merge Duplicate Contacts in Outlook 2016/13/07

How To Merge Duplicate Contacts In Outlook 2010, 2013 And 2016: Stepwise Solutions

When an Outlook user copies contacts from one contact folder to another, there are chances of duplicate items to occur. Erasing identical contacts may not be a reliable solution because a contact might contain those fields, which other duplicate contacts leave as blank. This is a reason why users look for a solution to merge duplicate contacts in Outlook.

“I am having two Gmail accounts configured in Outlook 2013. There is a need to merge duplicate contacts of both these accounts in the address book. Manually, I tried to add all such contacts but when I selected outlook duplicate contacts to merge something occurred that hanged my Outlook application and caused a reason to restart my machine. Can anyone recommend me a solution to perform the same”

Taking in consideration all such scenarios of other Outlook users, we are going to illustrate all solutions to resolve the outlook 2007/10 duplicate contact merge without causing any harm to email client application.

Merge Duplicate Contacts in Microsoft Outlook 2010, 2013, and 2016

MS Outlook is a smart email application for preventing contacts duplication when one is trying to create it. However, sometimes situation might occur where there are duplicate contacts in the Outlook address book leading to requirement of some special approaches for cleaning this mess. Go through following set of instructions to accomplish merging task in Outlook:

  • Launch MS Outlook on your machine and then go to Contacts items within it.

  •  Right-click on Contacts folder and then select New Folder from the current menu list.

  •  Mention the name of new folder, say Merge Duplicate 

  •  Navigate towards current folder of Contacts and select all contacts available in it 
  • Either right-click on all selected contacts and choose Move option from the menu, or press Ctrl+Shift+V keys from your keyboard for opening Move Items wizard.

  •  Select the folder that you have recently created (Merge Duplicate) and hit on OK button to continue
  •  From left-hand side corner, go to File >> Open & Export >> Import/Export and then select Export to a file option from the current wizard

  •  Select Comma Separated Values option and hit on Next

  •  Select Contacts folder to be exported in CSV file format and hit Next to proceed further
  •  Browse the location where you want to save resultant CSV file and click on Next to continue 

  • Click on Finish to start initializing the contacts exporting procedure

  • Now its time to import your exported contacts in default Contacts folder of Outlook. Therefore, open Import and Export Wizard on your system and select Import from another program or file option
  • Choose Comma Separated Values option and hit on Next to continue

  •  Browse the exported CSV file, enable Do not import duplicate items option and hit on Next 
  • Select the Contacts folder as destination and click on Next

  •  Click on Finish button to start importing contacts of CSV file in main Outlook contacts folder
  •  Its time to merge the contacts of main Outlook contacts folder with original contacts, which are present in Merge Duplicate folder (newly created folder) in order to prevent data consistency. So, open this newly created folder and select all contacts from that list. Open Move Items wizard and move all your entire data in Outlook Contacts folder
  •  Moving of contacts procedure will get started in which Outlook will display a pop-up window whenever it will encounter a duplicate item. This window will recommend you to update the details of the current contact and also show a preview of information, which is to be added or updated.  

Tips: In order to get out of the confusion that what to select or what not to select from the pop-up window, you can take help of following guidelines:

  • Select Update when you want to merge two duplicate contacts 
  • Use Add new contact option, if you want to save two contacts separately 
  • Select Update All option if you want to speed up the procedure of merging without any interruption 
  • Click on Skip button when you are in a mood to review the specific contact later. In such case, the original contact remains in Merge Duplicate folder
One thing a user should be aware of is that if MS Outlook does not shows any pop-up window even when duplicate contacts are present then, it means that Duplicate contact detector feature in Outlook is disabled.

Enable Duplicate Contact Detector In Outlook

By default, this detector feature is enabled in Microsoft Outlook. But sometimes a situation might occur in which this option gets disabled. Therefore, go through following steps to learn the procedure to enable duplicate contact detector in Outlook: 

  1. Launch MS Outlook and go to File >> Options 

  2. In current wizard, select the People/Contacts tab from left-hand side menu of the window 

3. In Name and filing section, look at checkbox of Check for Duplicates…. If it is uncheck then, check it for enabling it and press OK to update the settings

Link Contacts in Outlook 2013 and 2016

If a user is operating Outlook 2013 and 2016 application then, he/she can instantly combine all contacts related to one person with help of Link Contacts option, provided in latest Outlook versions.

(a) Open contacts list in Outlook by clicking on People icon, located at bottom of the Outlook page

 (b) Select the contact, which you want to merge for selection

 (c) Click on the menu icon which is located just next to Edit and then choose Link Contacts option from the current list

(d) Mention the name of the person in search field, which you want to connect and depending upon certain criteria, you will find that Outlook displays all related contacts

(e) Choose the required contact from displayed result and click on it. The chosen contact will be merged right-away and then you will find names in Linked Contacts heading. At last, click on OK to update the changes

 Recommendation: This feature is not reliable for cleaning mess from large number of contacts from the list. Therefore, it is suggested that you should use this technique when there are few identical contacts to be merged in one.


How to merge duplicate contacts in Outlook 2010, 2013, and 2016 is now no more a query for Outlook users. After reading this blog, users can easily merge duplicate contacts without any help of third party utility or technical guidance. Moreover, the procedure is foolproof enabling users to accomplish the task without any data loss.


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