What’s the best way to find an email address?
Any way you can.
You’ll find plenty of email finder tools promising all kinds of gold at the end of the rainbow. It’s difficult to sort through. So we have 9 tips that utilize your craftiness above all else and 3 tools to get a jump on your email sleuthing.
If you want to know how to find an email address, it’s most likely for 1 of 2 reasons:
- You have a specific decision maker or thought leader in mind, or
- You have a target audience and you’d like to reach them in their inbox.
The majority of these tips on how to find an email work for #1. Only a handful work for #2 (emailing promising prospects at scale).
What’s the ‘best’ way to do anything? Is it what’s fastest? Easiest? Organic? Most scalable? Most accurate?
We won’t answer that for you. Instead, take a look through these 9 methods for finding email addresses and decide for yourself. Then check out the tools to get started.
9 Ways to Find an Email Address
#1: Check the Website
It’s the easiest place to start.
Start with the Contact Us page, then check out blog posts or the Team/About Us page.
This step is especially important if you have a request (i.e. a guest post or partnership opportunity). Some companies will have explicit instructions for those processes — so be sure to follow them.
The Good: Checking a company’s website is great for specific questions or if you’re trying to get in touch with a team instead of a particular person.
The Bad: 90% of the time it only works 10% of the time. Companies typically include a contact form or generic email address instead of employee-specific email addresses.
It’s worth having a look, though.
#2: Add a Personal Touch to a Generic Email Address
If you’re not entirely sure of the person you want to get in contact with, it may be better to send a message to the company or department email. Try for emails like:
These email addresses most likely receive dozens (or hundreds) of emails each day, so it’s critical that your email message stands out. Follow this short checklist to make sure you get a reply:
- Include the company name in the subject line and first line.
- Make the email just as much about them as about you.
- Get your point across quickly and make a specific request (“can you get me in touch with who I should be talking to?”)
This email template for a guest post request got me a response the next day.
The Good: It’s a simple step when you’re not sure (or unable to find) who you need to contact. Personalizing otherwise generic emails is a good practice to get into, too.
The Bad: There’s no guarantee your email will be read — more so than with your typical cold email. Use this one as a last resort.
#3: Just Guess (and Test)
Most company emails are a variation of name and domain. For example:
But just sending your email to all the most common email addresses is a good way to get marked as spam. Most of them won’t be deliverable, and you’ll risk your most important emails ending up in the junk folder (or even account deactivation).
Instead, test out the email using Gmail. If the person has a G Suite/Gmail account, a little profile will pop up when you type the email address into the ‘To’ field. Check it out.
The Good: The ‘Gmail check’ is a free and easy way to check your best-guess emails.
The Bad: Manually checking emails can be time consuming for a whole list — and hard to scale.
#4: Turn to Search Engines
Sometimes you can use advanced search to find an email address. DuckDuckGo works particularly well for this.
Just put the domain (i.e. “@wiza.co”) in quotes to make it an exact match search. Then enter the name or department afterward. If there’s a match on a page or blog, it will show up.
The Good: Once you hit gold, you’ll know it. The email address will show up in the search results snippet and you can just copy it from there.
The Bad: Again, this is a very manual and slow process — and will typically only work for the public faces of the company. Try it as a quick search if you just need one, high-profile email.
#5: Connect on Social Media First
Email is tried and true, but people are on Twitter and LinkedIn throughout the day too. Instead of digging for an email, try dropping them a DM on Twitter or Connection request on LinkedIn.
If email is a better medium for what you’re doing, just ask for an email intro in your follow up. This works particularly well to find an email address of someone you have mutual connections with.
Make sure you do some work first: follow them, like a handful of posts and comment on one or two.
The Good: Reaching out on social media can be an organic, conversational alternative to just sending an email. But typically it makes sense to go with a both/and (or first/then) approach.
The Bad: There are very specific uses where this makes the most sense. If you’re trying to find dozens or hundreds of emails, social media outreach may not be a good alternative.
#6: Start with LinkedIn Sales Navigator
Instead of casting a wide net and trying to play detective, start with where you know your leads will be: LinkedIn Sales Navigator.
Email finders often find technically correct email addresses for someone who has since switched companies. Annoying, right?
With Sales Nav, you can start by identifying the person you need to contact at a specific company or entire lists of people based on position, industry, geographic location and more.
Either way, Wiza lets you export their email(s) into a .csv file, ready for outreach. See how it works for a specific person (our very own CEO) below.
The Good: You can easily ensure you’re sending to the right emails, whether it’s for one person or hundreds of leads.
The Bad: You’ll have to need to have a Sales Navigator account already — or set one up. See how much Sales Nav costs.
#7: Export Your LinkedIn Connections
Another social media related idea: export your LinkedIn Connections to identify who has an email address associated with their account.
The Good: It’s a straightforward process and focuses on those who already make their email addresses public.
The Bad: It’s dependent on you having a lot of LinkedIn Connections — and not many include their email address on the platform.
#8: Get Topical for Outreach at Scale
If your goal in finding an email address is link building or content outreach, you may want to start with the content itself. Armed with a list of relevant posts, you can pitch your own content more effectively.
Ahrefs has some powerful tools for finding relevant content along with author names. From there, you can use the names and domains to find emails using Sales Nav (with Idea #6 from above) or your favorite email finder tool.
The Good: Combining Ahrefs with an email finder tool makes it easy to send personalized content outreach email at scale. It works well for something organic (blogger outreach, sales thought leadership, link building, etc.).
The Bad: You’ll still need to combine your content topic list with an email finder, sometimes with irrelevant results (i.e. the author is a guest post author as well).
#9: Use Email Finder Tools
Using an email finder tool is as close to automatic as you can get for finding an email address. For individual people, all you need is the name. For bulk searches, you just need to know your target audience.
From there, the email finder tool does all the work. Wiza, for example, scrapes the web for your LinkedIn leads and returns emails with valid (99% accurate) and risky (70% accurate) labels.
The good and bad of email finder tools varies from tool to tool. The biggest benefit is that the right tool can save you tons of time finding emails.
Instead of spending hours walking through some of the ideas above, you could spend a few minutes uploading a spreadsheet or running a search through LinkedIn Sales Navigator.
To help you get started, here are 3 of the most popular tools.
3 Tools to Find an Email Address
Use Wiza to find email addresses directly from your LinkedIn Sales Navigator searches and saved lead lists. Wiza is built as a Chrome extension, so you can find emails within your existing lead generation workflow.
You can download email results as a .csv or integrate with tools like Outreach.io and Salesforce.
You will need a Sales Nav account, so Wiza works best in aligned marketing and sales efforts.
Wiza pricing starts at $0.15 per valid email with monthly plans available.
Skrapp is often compared to Wiza, since they are both Chrome extensions for LinkedIn. With Skrapp.io, you use the Chrome extension on LinkedIn to export individual profile emails or search result pages.
Skrapp can work well for finding email addresses on LinkedIn one by one. If you want to find bulk email addresses you may want to find another tool.
Skrapp pricing starts at $49/month for up to 1,000 emails.
Hunter is arguably one of the most popular email finder tools online.
To find an email, you just enter the domain and then search by name. You an also upload lists to find emails at bulk.
The problem is Hunter often finds ‘Verified’ email addresses for people who now longer work at the company. In most cases, you’ll have to cross reference on LinkedIn to make sure you’re still emailing the right person.
Hunter pricing starts at $49/month for up to 1,000 requests.