Sync Google Contacts with Outlook

Want to sync your Gmail contacts with Outlook? The FullContact Address Book will have direct syncing soon, and can do it via CSV or vCard right now. 

Love it or hate it, using Microsoft Outlook is a reality for many of us. Chances are, if you’re an Outlook user, you’ve wondered how you can sync your Google Contacts with Outlook. With Gmail’s increasing reach in the market, it’s more and more common to have Gmail users accessing their accounts via third-party applications. Unfortunately, neither Google nor Microsoft seems to want to let you sync contacts without jumping through a few hoops. So we’ve tried out the hoops for you and come up with 2 great ways to accomplish Google Contacts sync with Outlook.

Windows Only(?)

From what we’ve found, the only reputable methods for accomplishing this both exist on Windows. While Outlook for Mac is certainly something that can’t be ignored, the vast majority of Outlook users are also Windows users so this factor shouldn’t hurt things too much.

There is, apparently, a way to make it work with Outlook for Mac. But the method is so complex that the author of the only blog post I could find that discussed the method in depth went so far as to draw a schematic for what had to happen.

Google Apps? That’s Easy.

Here’s the good news – If you’re using Google Apps you’re in luck. There’s a Google-produced tool just for you. Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook is easy to integrate and it does everything that you want it to do. There’s even a video to walk you through the installation.

For the Rest of Us

The first method that we’ll talk about is probably my favorite of the two. It’s an open-source project called GO Contact Sync Mod and you can find it on SourceForge. It features bi-directional sync, so that when you enter a contact in either Outlook or Gmail, it will appear everywhere. There’s a load of other features, as well:

  • Contact Categories and Contact Photos
  • Backup your Outlook Contacts to the Cloud
  • Software free-of-charge
  • Synchronize your Exchange contacts as well as your contacts in a PST file
  • Synchronize your contacts with Windows Phone 7 (WP7), iPhone and Android over the air through Google

The other method has a free version and a paid alternative with more features, and it’s called Contacts Sync. While I’m a huge fan of open-source software, there’s something to be said for using a paid version of a product because someone’s income is reliant upon them making it work well and continuing to update it. Unfortunately, the free version of Contacts Sync doesn’t do two-way synchronization so that’s a potential deal-breaker.

What’s Coming Soon?

One of the things that we’re working really hard to accomplish with the FullContact Address Book is the ability to work with your contacts and to keep them constantly in sync no matter what sources you’re using. Making sure that this works, and that we keep your contacts the way that you want them, is an incredibly difficult task but we’re getting closer to perfection with it every day.

Want to get a sneak peek? Of course you do. Sign up for the beta and you will be able to sync via CSV or vCard while we work on automatic synchronization for release in the near future.