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Clay offers the most powerful person search available anywhere, allowing you to find anyone you know, by typing almost anything.

Clay’s Search is similar to Google, meaning you can just type regular phrases to find someone. Behind the scenes, Clay parses your search to understand who you’re looking for and gives you results in milliseconds.


Designing better search

Search is designed to help you find the broadest possible set of results, sorted by relevance and relationship. What does this mean in practice?

  • Broad: We believe serendipity helps reinforce relationships, so we’d rather give you too many results that include the person you’re looking for, along with others you might not have thought of, instead of too few. To do this, we correct for typos and replace broad words—like 'NYC'—with other terms like New York, just in case someone uses an alternate phrase.
    • Multi-variable: We also search across your notes and every field Clay brings in, so you havethe largest chance for a successful match. Everything is assessed to present you with the right people.
  • Relevance: Depending on your search term, Clay will prioritize particular fields over others. For example, a match for 'NYC' in someone’s location takes precedence over a match in their education.
  • Relationship: Unlike other searches, Clay knows how you know someone. So people you’ve known forever will take precedence over people you only met once, for example.


Example terms

Because search understands regular phrases and sentences, there's no need for specific keywords or filters. Here’s a small sample of things you can search for:

  • By Location

    • City Philadelphia Mountain View
    • State Michigan FL
    • Country France USA
    • Region Europe NYC Bay Area
  • By Organization
    • Company name Apple Procter & Gamble
    • Employment type Freelance Self-Employed
    • Industry Fintech Fashion
  • By Education
    • Institution UCLA École Polytechnique
    • Major Psychology Economics
    • Education Level Bachelors MBA PhD Postdoc
  • By Interest
    • Hobbies Travel Woodworking Etsy
    • Publications Vogue The Atlantic
  • By Twitter
    • Twitter followers People who follow me
    • Twitter following People I follow
    • People I follow and follow me back Mutual follows
    • Follower count people with 10k+ followers (options are 1k+, 10k+, and 100k+)
  • By Other Social Media
    • By social media account Soundcloud Tumblr Github Pinterest
  • By Date
    • By particular time periods Last month Last quarter Last year
    • Broad time periods A while ago Recently
  • By Relationship
    • By meetings People I've met once People I've never met
    • By email People I've emailed
    • By relationship closest Close Closer Closest New
  • Miscellaneous
    • Get a list of all your contacts all
    • List Clay members you know Clay members
    • List of people you texted, if you have connected iMessage on Desktop texted messaged iMessage
    • List of people who have a phone number phone
    • List of people who were brought in from the iOS Contacts integration contacts Apple contact
    • List of people who were brought in from Facebook facebook friends

Sorting your results

top_right__2_.pngUse Sort at the top right to rearrange the order of the results by relevance (default), name, or recency.

Advanced search

On top of normal phrases, Clay’s search supports a few advanced parameters that allow you to be more specific in your searches:

  • #tags: Many Clay members tell us that they use hashtags in their notes to classify notes or people. You can search for hashtags directly in search—for example, #reporters.

  • “exact match”: Clay interprets your query to ignore typos and better understand broad terms. If you only want to find people who match a specific phrase verbatim, put the phrase in quotes. For example, "new york city ballet" would match people who had the phrase 'New York City ballet' in their bio, while new york city ballet would also include people in NYC who liked ballet.

  • remove: If you want to exclude certain people from your search, you can preface a word or phrase with adash. For example, designers -fashion would return designers who don’t work in fashion, while architects -nyc would return architects who don’t live or work in New York.

🌟 Pro Tip: Use multiselect and right-click for bulk actions.

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