Find a contact

If you can't find information for one of your contacts, you can conduct a basic search by using the Contacts Search window, or you can search by using the multiple search criteria available in Outlook for Mac.

Do any of the following:

Find a contact in Outlook or a directory service with a basic search

The Contacts Search window allows you to search for contacts that are saved in Outlook or in a separate directory service. And if you have a Microsoft Exchange account, you can also search through your organization's offline address book if you are offline.

  1. At the bottom of the navigation pane, click Mail, Calendar, or Contacts.

  2. On the Home tab, click Contacts Search.

    Contacts Search

  3. Start typing the contact's name or e-mail address in the search box.

    Outlook displays a list of contacts that match the letters that you type.

  4. In the Contacts Search results, you can do any of the following:


Do this

Limit the search to only include contacts' names

On the Search All Fields pop-up menu, click Search Names Only.

Limit the search to a specific folder or address book

On the All Folders pop-up menu, click a folder or address book.

Send a message to a contact in the search results

Select the contact, and then click New E-mail.

Create a meeting with contact in the search results

Select the contact, and then click New Meeting.

Save a contact to your Outlook contacts

Press CONTROL , click the contact, and then click Add to My Contacts.

  1. Note: If you are composing a new message or meeting, you can find a contact by clicking   Open Contacts Search next to the To field.

Find an Outlook contact by using multiple search criteria

Sometimes searching with one search criterion isn't enough. Utilize the many search options in Outlook for Mac to add multiple criteria and find the contact you're looking for.

Note: If you choose to use multiple search criteria, you will only be able to search within your Outlook contacts list, not in a directory service.

  1. In the Navigation pane, click Contacts.

  2. On the Edit menu, point to Find, and then click Outlook Items.

    The Search tab appears.

  3. Define the scope of the search by clicking a scope button on the Search tab, such as All Contacts.

    Contacts Search tab, group 1

  4. Choose the categories you want to include in your search by selecting or clearing the category check boxes in the Navigation pane.

  5. Add any of the following criteria to refine your search:

On the Search tab, click

To search based on


Text that appears anywhere in an item.


The name of a contact.


The e-mail address of a contact.


The company name listed for a contact.

Has Phone

Whether or not you have a phone number for a contact.

Has Address

Whether or not you have a physical address for a contact.


The follow up status of a contact entry.


The date that a contact entry was last changed.

  1. Note: Some search criteria will require you to enter additional information.

  2. To modify your search by adding or removing criteria, do any of the following:


Do this

Add an additional criterion

Click Add search criteria button .

Delete one of your search criteria

Click the Remove search criteria button next to the criterion that you want to delete.

  1. When you are done looking at the search results, on the Search tab, click Close.

    Search tab, Close


    • The available search criteria are specific to where you are within Outlook, such as Mail, Calendar, Contacts, Tasks, and Notes.

    • If you don't click Close, the Search tab remains active. The item list continues to show the search results, even if you click another tab, such as the Home tab.

    • An Outlook search includes the file names of attachments but not the text inside attachments.

    • The keyboard shortcut for starting an advanced search is SHIFT + COMMAND + F .

    • To save a search as a Smart Folder, on the Search tab, click Save, and then enter a name for the Smart Folder. Search tab, Save and Advanced

See also

Add the sender of a message to your Outlook contacts

Create a contact group (also called a distribution list)

Save or update a contact from a directory

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