Ever wanted to get in touch with someone online and couldn’t find their email address?
Whether it is for blogger outreach, SEO link building, networking or another reason, email is still the best way to get hold of people.
Let’s face it, we all check our emails way too many times a day. In fact, it was found in a University of British Columbia Study back in 2014 that
People were checking their email up to 15 times a day
I know, social media can also be a good way to get hold of people, but not everyone is on there all the time. And certainly not as often as email.
So, getting hold of their email is a sure-fire way to reach someone.
But sometimes, finding that elusive email can be a right pain in the [insert favorite body part].
As part of my work doing blogger outreach I often need to find someone's email address.
So, in this post I want to share with you a lot of ways you can do that.
Using This Guide
This guide is broken up into sections which you can jump to via the table of contents below.
They are ordered by easiest to hardest (ie. most effort).
So, start with the first ones listed then, if they fail, try some others further down the list.
When you want to contact someone who is the owner of a website not surprisingly one of the best places to start is on their website itself.
Sounds crazy, but some people, including me (depending on when you read this post) have their email on their website.
Sometimes in obvious places, sometimes not. But you should certainly try looking.
Try taking a look at the:
This won’t always turn up an email address, but it’s a great place to start.
This is a great trick I use all the time, and for smaller or mid-level bloggers (or website owners) this works really well.
Take a look for any kind of optin or sign up form on their website, and subscribe. The forms could be:
No matter where you find them once you sign up you will receive a welcome mail from them, usually from their most used email.
And even if they are not using it as their primary email, chances are they will be checking it.
Why? Because they want to know if one of their hard-earned email subscribers is writing to them.
That can now become you!
Looking for someone's email address? Sign up to their email list! #bloggingtips
There are a couple of LinkedIn email address hacks you can try if you want to find someone’s email.
If you by chance happen to be connected on LinkedIn to the person who’s email address you want then the following is quite simple.
Head over to the LinkedIn Contacts Export page and get an excel copy of all your contacts.
Not only will you get their name, but also the email they used to sign up for LinkedIn. It may not be their primary email (we all have a second email for all the junk we get online, right?) but it is certainly a good starting point.
Another cool shortcut is to check their contact information in Linkedin on their profile.
Quite often people have not hidden this information and it is readily available (below, the co-founder of Quick Sprout has hidden his):
Once you have exhausted the easier options, you can get sneaky and start using a Chrome plugin…
(WHAT, you are not using the Chrome browser? now is a good time to start!)
There are quite a few Chrome plugins out there that can help you trawl through a website and help you locate any email addresses.
This baby is great. It shows up RED when there are emails, and then you can click the handy little target:
When you click on the target it then gives you a list of all the emails it has found on the website.
When you install Email Hunter it also gives you an extra button in LinkedIn profiles which can really help to speed up the search process if you are using LinkedIn for your prospecting.
Note: You need an account to use this Email Hunter and there is a limit to the number of free searches you can do (currently 150/month for free). You can find more info on their pricing page.
Another Chrome extension worth exploring for the same kind of purpose is Reprofiler.
I prefer Email Hunter which really produced those emails above on Hubspot. In comparison Reprofiler produced nothing.
However, don’t discount it. On some sites it does produce results. And, it is always worth having a fallback in case your “go to tool” is not finding anything.
This is another cool Chrome extension that works by highlighting someones name within a certain context (say their website).
It then gives you the usual three email search fields (first, last, domain) and asks you to check them; then hit search.
I have not really tried it (except on myself and it did not find anything – which is odd, as my email is easy to find) but it is apparently backed by lots of sales data, so it might be handy for certain kinds of sales searches.
When it comes to saving you a bit of time and heartache nothing beats letting a tool do all the work for you.
So, if you are still looking for a someone’s email my suggestion is to start of with the robots (ahem, tools) first.
There are quite a few out there, and they are certainly not fail-proof, but they are worth adding to your arsenal as they do all the grunt work for you (yes, you still need to type in their name and domain!).
Winning top spot at “the most creative and irrelevant tool name” awards last year, this is a great tool for auto-magically finding someone’s email address.
All you need is their full name and the domain you believe they work at (eg. madlemmings.com)
A more obvious sounding alternative, Find Any Email is one worth checking out. It also only requires First Name, Last Name and Domain name and often turns up some good results.
Ted Rubin recommended this one in the comments, so I am adding this in. It is a gem.
Just adding someone’s name, or LinkedIn URL you can quite easily find an email.
There are a number of free searches per month, and then a paid plan of course :>
When you sign up for a domain name, you have to give your contact details including an email address. That is part of the deal.
You can pay to hide this, but more often than not the owner of a website will have left this information publicly visible.
So, you can check the website details via “who is” and more often than not find the owner’s email. On larger sites this probably won’t be the person you are after.
Checking for a target like Moz.com, here is what it turns up (shown on the right) – they have a specific email address for domain registration. But for smaller sites it will more than likely give you the email you are after!
Some of you might be using, or thinking about using, paid outreach tools in your work. There are certainly quite a few of them.
And helping you find email addresses is often something they have baked right in.
I personally use Ninja Outreach and they have a specific email finder tool that can help you out when looking for emails.
They also have a chrome plugin that can provide a lot of this information when you are on a website directly. Very easy to use!
This is another great outreach tool that can really speed up the whole “finding an email and contacting someone” process.
They also have their own chrome plugin (called Buzz Marker) which is handy if you have an account with them.
When none of the above tools or tricks are working for you, or you just need to do things manually (run out of credits on the tools, need to do it in bulk etc), the following are a bunch of other ideas you can try:
You could simply do a Google search for something like
site:domainname.com their name
site:domainname.com (at) domainname.com
or other similar searches, will help you find any emails on a website.
However, why would you bother when you can use a handy little tool like this one from Buzzstream. You can see the results of searching for Rand Fishkin’s email.
The tools simply gives you all the searches it thinks are worth looking at, and then you just open them each in a new tab.
How cool is that!
Ever had someone ask to get in touch via Twitter? It happens a lot. (“hey, what’s your email?”)
So, another cool hack is to check if someone has shared their email address via twitter.
Twitter’s advanced search is a great place to start as it can help you narrow down the search fast.
I suggest using either a blanket “email domainname.com” in the all of these words field at the top.
This is an example of looking for an email for General Electric – I just entered “email ge.com” in the Twitter advanced search:
Power Tip: you can restrict it even further if you know their Twitter handle, using the from these people field.
Sometimes all this searching doesn’t turn up a thing! Then you have to turn to pure guess and grunt work.
We all know that emails follow a certain pattern right? Like:
and so on.
Again, rather than doing all this grunt work yourself, there are some handy tools out there to auto-generate all the “reasonable” variations for you.
The best one I have seen is Email Address Guesser, which will make a huge list of options like these (a portion of the results):
How do you use these results? Read the next tip…
Rapportive is a great tool for checking, while inside Gmail, whether an email is actually correct. When the email exists (in most cases) it will show you a user’s profile and their related details.
Note: I will keep using Rand as an example in this case (sorry Rand if you are reading this, email me if you want me to change it).
This is what appears from Rapportive in a panel on the right of the compose window in gmail (when the email matches):
So, with the results from the previous tip, you can take all the email possibilities you have found in the Email Guesser and dump them into an email in Gmail. Or alternatively, one-by-one if you are up for more hard work!
Awesome hack, right!
Why Rapportive Rocks: If you haven’t tried Rapportive within Gmail yet, you have to get it. Even if it is not for email searches. It is a great way to connect on social media with people you are emailing, or simply just to find out more about them.
Rapportive pulls it’s data from LinkedIn and shows you a bunch of stuff including Social Media profiles, shared connections and more. (as you can see in the image above).
I use it all the time to connect with new contacts on LinkedIn.
Next time you are looking for someone's email address, for whatever reason, you are now armed with a bunch of ways to go about it.
Always start with the easiest method first, like their website (even their contact form) and then work your way down the list.
In fact, why not give all these tips a try and you will never be looking for ways to find an email address again!.
Got an inventive way to find emails I did not mention? Feel free to let me know in the comments or to email me directly :> if you can find my email! (Hint: It is not that hard)
Ashley is obsessed with SEO and WordPress. He is also the founder of Mad Lemmings. When he is not busy helping clients get higher on Google he can be found doing crazy sports in the Swiss Alps (or eating too much chocolate - a habit he is trying to break).