Learning how to check email address owner information increases the chance your message will reach its intended recipients and protects you from falling for email phishing scams. The most common ways to check email address owner details include using Google Search, browser extension lookup, and social media profile search. Here, we also explore how to trace an email address to its owner using various email tools.
1. Utilize CRM Auto-enrichment Tools
Many customer relationship management (CRM) platforms with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities or data enrichment features automatically keep contact information up to date. These tools work by monitoring publicly listed information (e.g., a company website’s contact page and social media profiles) where data, including the email address, is constantly updated. Instead of manually searching on Google or Facebook, let the CRM’s automation feature do it for you.
Pro tip: Freshsales is a CRM tool that combines an auto-enrichment tool with its artificial intelligence (AI) feature, called Freddy AI. On a contact profile, users can enter an email address and have the remainder of the profile enriched with all other data and web links associated with that address. Read about this platform’s full capabilities in our comprehensive Freshsales review.
2. Perform a Google Search
The easiest way to check an email address owner name is to use Google. If you have received a message from someone who didn’t leave a name or email signature, Google’s search engine is a good starting point. Plus, you can use it to confirm an address from an email list you purchased. Copy and paste the address on the Google search bar to see if it matches the information on a directory, web page, or online profile, such as LinkedIn.
Alternatively, other search engine platforms like Bing offer the same functionality despite not being nearly as popular as Google. There’s also DuckDuckGo, which lets you search the web without being tracked (storing your personal information or following you around with online advertisements).
Pro tip: Use a customer relationship management (CRM) system like Zoho CRM to store and organize the email addresses you confirm on Google. This tool acts as a sales database full of leads and their contact information. It lets your sales team easily find email addresses or phone numbers to make email introductions, follow up, or verify a sender if an unknown contact sent an email message. Learn more in our expert Zoho CRM review.
3. Browser Extension Lookup
If you are a Google Chrome user, you’ll love this method on how to trace an email address to its owner, as it’s extremely easy to access. Simply use browser extensions, such as FullContact, to compile robust information from your Gmail accounts. This tool also pulls in other information from the web, such as their job title, company, phone number, and social media links, when you receive an email from a new contact or do an email owner lookup.
Once you have added an extension to your browser and enabled it, click on it, type in the name you are looking for in the search box, and then click Enter. In general, browser extensions display a list of email addresses associated with the name you entered, along with the sources. FullContact, on the other hand, pulls in additional publicly available information, including social profiles, photos, and companies.
An alternative Chrome extension option is the supplemental tool available in Copper CRM. Similar to FullContact, you can look up email address owners or have data compiled as messages are received from new addresses. The main difference is that Copper CRM is also a full CRM system that can manage leads, contacts, tasks, opportunities, and projects in one platform. Learn more about this provider in our Copper CRM review.
4. Use Email Verification Services
One of the most efficient ways to verify an email address is to use a business-to-business (B2B) database like UpLead, which has built-in email verification capabilities. This tool quickly runs an email address against multiple databases to confirm its validity. It is known for having one of the most comprehensive databases, with more than 108 million contacts with email addresses and 95% accuracy.
5. Reverse Email Lookup
Another way to compile information from all sources at once and gain additional insights on someone is to invest in a paid email address lookup tool like Spokeo. This platform lets users search contacts by name, email address, phone number, or social media profiles. This service then pulls from white pages, public records, websites, and social media profiles to obtain results for anything associated with that person.
Spokeo also provides address history, work history, and family connections to each person, but it costs between $15 and $20 per month. You can also unlock an individual profile for as low as 95 cents. Because it’s a paid service, we recommend it for sales teams that heavily use email marketing or email introductions in their sales activities. Other similar paid reverse email lookup services are InfoTracer, BeenVerified, PeopleWhiz, and Social Catfish. If you want to try a free email lookup service, try Hunter.io.
6. Dig Into Social Media Profiles
Checking social media profiles can be a valuable method when learning how to look up an email address—assuming they made that information public. Before launching lead generation campaigns, conduct prospect research to confirm email addresses are accurate or find prospects to target.
For business-to-consumer (B2C) businesses, use Facebook and enter the email address into the search bar, where a profile will come up if there are any matches. If you’re a business-to-business (B2B) organization, LinkedIn is a great site to use. While you can’t search email addresses for matches, you can search and view profiles. Many users publish their professional email addresses on their page even if you aren’t connected with them.
Pro tip: Combine your sales and social media management systems by investing in a CRM with social media integration capabilities. HubSpot, for example, is a popular CRM platform that also lets you make posts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. Plus, you can monitor keyword mentions, track interactions, and use social media platforms for lead data enrichment. Find out if it is a good fit for your business needs by reading our HubSpot review.
7. Trace the IP Address
Tracing an IP address using an email header is a sophisticated option and useful if you’re trying to confirm an email address for security reasons. The process will vary slightly depending on whether you use Outlook, Gmail, or Yahoo systems, but it ultimately involves the same steps.
When you receive a message, go to the message options to view the email header, which will be in different spots based on your email provider. Once there, you can view the IP address where the email came from. Next, you can search the address using an IP address search tool, such as whatismyip.com, for additional data.
There are a few limitations to using this method. For instance, if the sender used a virtual private network (VPN), address information may not be accurate. This is because VPNs, by design, hide your IP address to provide you with an additional level of internet security protection.
8. Contact the Company Associated With the Email Domain
The final option for learning how to find the person behind an email address is simply by asking. If you received an email from a new sender, want to verify one from a list, or want to make sure an address is accurate before making an introduction, you can call the organization and ask. Most email address domain names are associated with the organization they came from.
If you receive a message from an address without a name and you’ve exhausted all other options, Google the company name on the address for a phone number. Call the number and ask them to confirm the address is from their company and find out who owns this email. This method should ideally be used as a last resort if the other options fail, as it does take more time.
Why Should You Check Email Address Owners?
If you don’t know how to trace email address owner details, you can’t verify the sender of a message or confirm the address you’re sending to. There are also additional security, sales productivity, and data integrity reasons. In fact, one of the key aspects of sales management that sales leaders are responsible for is to ensure tools and processes are in place to help their team with email verification.
Here are the main benefits of checking email address owners:
Helps Prevent Cybersecurity Breaches
Many cybersecurity incidents are traced back to email messages phishing for credentials or attempting to get someone to download a malicious file. Verifying an address from the sender helps determine whether the message is legit and if the sender is who they say they are.
Ensures Accurate Addresses for Sales & Marketing Initiatives
Crafting personalized sales email messages takes ample time and research to get robust response rates. All of that time is wasted, however, if the email address is inaccurate. This is why checking the email address owner’s details is essential.
Keeps Sales Data Clean
Email addresses are some of the most crucial data you can have on a lead or customer, as it’s used for lead generation, lead nurturing campaigns, and promoting special offers. This makes it key to keeping your data up to date and accurate at all times.
Reduces Cost of Maintaining Database
Maintaining a contact database and sending emails both cost money. Checking and verifying email addresses is the first step in weeding out unwanted emails from your list. Trimming down this list also means fewer recipients for your email, thereby cutting down on the cost of sending emails.
Maintains Good Sender Reputation
Email sender reputation is a score that email providers and internet service providers (ISPs) assign to any organization that sends email. This is one of the factors in email deliverability, which includes how many times your emails are marked as spam. The higher this score is, the higher the possibility that an ISP will deliver your emails to your intended recipients.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Yes, this is possible. In some instances, you can track a person using their email address if they set up that email with recent information, including their name, address, or phone number. Otherwise, you can use a free reverse email lookup tool like Peeplookup to find information linked to a certain email address. Note that you cannot trace a person’s actual location using just an email address because you’ll need an IP geolocation tool to do that.
If a person used their real name to set up their Gmail account, you can use Google Calendar to find out the owner. Use the “share to specific people” option, then click “add people.” Enter the email address, and the owner’s name and profile picture will appear. For more accurate results, you can use a free reverse email search tool like Radaris or a paid alternative like Spokeo to trace the owner of a Gmail account.
First, log into your Facebook account and check the profile of the person you are looking for. Click on the “About” tab and look for their email address under “Contact and Basic Info.” This will only work, however, if the person has not made this information private.
Knowing how to trace an email address to its owner is powerful for becoming more efficient in sales activities and fostering data integrity. The methods presented range from no-cost to paid options, manual to automated processes, and standalone vs integrating with other software such as a CRM platform. Based on the tools, budget, and technical knowledge you have, these eight approaches to email verification will meet your specific business needs.