Track Email Opens and Look Up Contacts With the Chrome Extension

Note: The Chrome Extension has been updated since this post was published. For more current information about our Chrome Extension, see this post. 

We’ve updated our Chrome extension with a couple of powerful new features.

First, you’re now able to track email opens for messages sent from Gmail.

When you send an email from your Gmail account, the time that the contact opened the email is indicated and the open will appear in the contact’s activity stream.

So, now you’ll know whether your message has been read or whether a follow-up email might be necessary to bump the chain to the top of your contact’s inbox.

You can also trigger automations to begin when the message is read. Previously this was only possible if you sent an email from inside of ActiveCampaign, but now you get this functionality without ever leaving Gmail! You can create an automation that adds a task to follow-up when an email is opened, move a deal record to a new stage, or send an invitation to schedule a phone call.

The emails you send through Gmail will automatically be pulled into ActiveCampaign so your Gmail account and ActiveCampaign account will always be in sync and your deal record will always be a complete record of all communication and interaction.

The second feature we’ve added is the ability to select an email address anywhere you find it online. If there isn’t already a contact with that email address, you can quickly create a contact record. If the email address is already connected to an existing contact, the contact details sidebar will display. You’ll see all the contact data and be able to manage the contact. You can add the contact to lists, automations, add tags, and more.

Right-click an email address wherever you find one online (this feature works outside of Gmail). Then select “ActiveCampaign: Look up email” from the menu that appears. A sidebar will display with information and options for managing the contact.

This feature is especially useful if your lead generation involves a lot of online research. As you come across prospects you can add them to your contact database and begin your sales process without even having to switch tabs.

These two premium features are only available on our Small Business and Enterprise plans and the tracking feature will only work with the new Contact & Deals CRM update.

To install the Chrome extension visit this page and click the “Get Extension” button.

We’ll continue to add features and functionality to the Chrome Extension. What would be useful to you?

A trial is worth a thousand words.
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  • Steve Vallender

    Hi, will we ever be able to track emails sent from MS Outlook 2016 as that would make AC much better for us? Thanks

    • Brian Gladu

      Hi Steve! We don’t have plans to track emails sent from MS Outlook at this time. If this is important to you, I’d suggest adding an item to our feedback forum because I did not see an existing request for that.

      • dshulmistra

        MS Outlook integration would be very useful.

    • Gary

      I agree Outlook integration would be very helpful!

  • Brian,

    I’ve got the extension installed (latest 2.0.3), but I’m not seeing any of this. I’ve tried re-installing and fully closing and restarting Chrome. The extension loads in Gmail just like before, but I don’t see any of the new features. Any ideas?

    • Brian Gladu

      Hi Paul! Are you on a Lite plan? If so, you won’t have access to these features until you upgrade. If you’re on a Small Business or Enterprise plan, I’d suggest reaching out to support so they can troubleshoot with you. I’m not sure what the issue would be.

      • Thanks Brian. I’ve reached out to support. Excited to try some of this :)

  • Christopher Cool

    I love how you guys just keep pouring out these great updates! Thank you!!
    I’m very happy with the new gmail email tracking. I’m trying to figure out how to use the automation with the email tracking. Can you provide a useful example? What kind of segmenting would I use to prevent an automation happening every time a personal email is opened? I know i’m missing something here. Cant wait to use this.

    • Brian Gladu

      You’re welcome, Christopher! You could create an automation that moves the contact to another stage of your pipeline if they read the email, you could create a task to follow-up, or you could tag them as engaged. It really just depends on what the next steps are after they read your email. You can probably automate aspects of the process or manage the process with reminders, tasks, and pipeline changes.

      To keep the automation from firing repeatedly, use the “Runs: Once” setting.

  • Daniel Keebler

    Awesome! I wanted to download a free gmail tracking extension. This will be much much better. Here’s another reason for us to upgrade in 2016. Thanks!

  • William StCyr

    Does this work with Google Inbox?

    • Brian Gladu

      It should work fine, William, but the email tracking feature won’t work — that’s Gmail only for now.

  • Currently I use BombBomb to provide chrome notifications that auto disappear and shows me a feed, so I know instantly when people open my emails and I can then strike right then while the iron is hot, with a call. Feel free to replace that. ;-) Also I use tools to schedule emails, that would be killer to replace the gmail tools out there to send the email later (like when it is 1am and I want to send it at 6am)

    • Brian Gladu

      Thanks for the feedback, Jason.

  • Aumji

    Goodbye YesWare! Thanks Active Campaign :-)

  • John Wienecke

    Will the extension automatically add the email to active campaign? I like to be notified if they read the email, but many of the people that I email are not customer that I need in active campaign. How do you distinguish between potential customers, existing customer that you are not marketing to at this time and others that you work with that are not customers. Also can you tell if they click on a link in your email? Thanks.

    • Brian Gladu

      Great questions, John. Yes, using the open tracking feature will automatically add them as a contact. Email tracking needs a contact record in order to work. Distinguishing between the status of different contacts might be best done with tags. Right now, the extension can’t track links.

      • John Wienecke

        I installed the extension to see it’s functionality. It did not work as expected. I sent email out from google and expected it to be pulled into active campaign. Is that correct, or must all contacts be sync with active campaign? If so, how do I indicate the correct tag? I have 700+ google contacts. Many of them are vendors and friends. Can I select the email that I want to track by using a different send button. I have that with other extension services that track open emails. John

        • Brian Gladu

          Would you mind opening a support ticket with this information, John? Our support team can look into what is happening and why.

          • John Wienecke

            Support ticket opened.

  • Brilliant update – all we need to really excel is:

    1) ability to choose a template from within the email
    2) live open alerts like you get with hubspot sidekick – now hubspot sales

    Keep up the great work

    • Hey Peter, thanks for the suggestion. The open notification would be a new twist but the crux of these are both already under consideration. Cheers!

  • Hi Brian. Great update. I’m curious how this might work with a mobile sales team who use Gmail on their Smartphone? Any plans to build something in iOS or Android?

    • Brian Gladu

      Hi Vincent, We have plans for an iOS app. Android would be further out.

  • This looks like an excellent addition and makes it much more useful thank you.

  • Is there any hope that if I have multiple gmail addresses, I can specify this to work with just one of them?

    • Brian Gladu

      Hi Justin, this is something we may look into in the future but isn’t currently planned. Thanks for your feedback.

  • Does this include the new gmail inbox thing or does it only work specifically on gmail? How can I see if it is working or not? If I reply to an contacts email does that email then show up under the contact?

    • Brian Gladu

      Hi Josiah, The extension is accessible any where you’re using the Chrome browser. You can add contacts when you reply from Gmail. For more up-to-date information on our Chrome extension, see this post which covers the latest version.

  • A. Goriaev

    I know a free mail tracking extension Deskunb, not sure if it shows contacts though.