Microsoft Outlook - Create a group

Create a group in Outlook

A Microsoft 365 group is different from a contact group (formerly called a distribution list). A contact group is a set of email addresses that you can use to send an email message or meeting invitation to everyone at once. To create a contact group, see Create a contact group.


  1. Open Outlook for Windows.

  2. Select Home > New Group.

    Groups options on the main Outlook ribbon

    Question mark indicates help content Don't see New Group in your ribbon? Your IT department might not have enabled Groups for your organization. Contact them for assistance.

  3. Fill out the group information.

Create a group

  • Group name: Create a name that captures the spirit of the group.

    Once you enter a name, a suggested email address is provided. "Not available" means the group name is already in use and you should try a different name. Note that once you choose a group name, it cannot be changed.

  • Description: Optionally, enter a description that will help others understand the group's purpose. This description will be included in the welcome email when others join the group.

  • Classification: Choose a classification. Options available depend on what your organization has set up.

  • Privacy: By default, Groups are created as Private. This means only approved members in your organization can see what's inside the group. Anyone else in your organization who is not approved cannot see what's in the group.

    • Select Public to create a group where anyone within your organization can view its content and become a member.

    • Select Private to create a group where membership requires approval and only members can view group content.

  • Send all group conversations and events to members' inboxes Optionally, check this box to enable members to see all group conversations and events in their inbox without having to visit separate group workspaces. Members can change this setting for their own mailboxes.

  • Select Create.


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