Outlook contacts can be exported into .csv (comma separated variable) files and then imported into Google Contacts, but distribution lists are just groups of contacts. Unfortunately as of April 2011, there isn’t a way to export distribution lists as a group from Outlook, then import them into Google Contacts. Distribution lists have to exported and then imported individually.
It is easier to recreate distribution lists in Google Contacts from your existing contacts than to move each list. This assumes that all the necessary contacts are already in Google Contacts. Duplicates will be created if the procedure below is used to import distribution lists that contain contacts that are already in Google Contacts. This may still be useful if the distribution list has contacts that are not already in Google Contacts as the duplicates can easily be removed.
Export the distribution list as a text file
- Open Outlook, click on the distribution dist you want to export.
- Click on File/Save As. On the Save As window, select Text Only (*.txt) in the Save As Type drop down on the bottom.
- Name your file, for example list01.txt, and then save it to your desktop.
Open the saved Text file in Microsoft Excel
- Launch Excel, and Open the previously saved file. When opening the file, make sure the Files of Type should be All Files, or Text Files.
- When you select the list01.txt, you will be automatically redirected to the Text Import Wizard as seen below.
- Please make sure you select the right Start import at row:. Since the default value of 1 is apparently not what you want with something like “Distribution List Name:” occupies at least 4 rows. So you can find the first row with an email address and put the row number in the Start import at row: number field.
- When you continue with “Next” clicking, you just review the screen and make sure everything is what you want, and click “Finish” in the last step.
- Your file will be opened in Excel.
Save the Excel file as .csv file
In Excel, click File/Save As and on the Save As window, make sure you change the Save as Type as .csv as seen in the window below.
Name your file, for example list01.csv and you are done with the exporting.
Import the Excel .csv file into Google Contacts
- After logging into your Google Apps account, click on the “more” link, and select “Contacts” from the drop down menu.
- Check the “Also add these contacts to a new group” box and verify that “New group” is selected.
- After Clicking the “Import” button, fill in the dialog box with the name of your distribution list.
- Click the “OK” button.
- Google Contacts will create a group with the name you entered and import the contacts.
- Under “My Contacts”, click on the group name you created. The imported contacts will be displayed.
Under “Please Select a CSV or vcard file to upload”, browse to your desktop and select the file you named previously.