How to Get the Most Out of Google Docs

Google Docs

Google Docs is an intuitive cloud-based word processing application with many customizable features and benefits. Part of the Google Suite, including Sheets, Slides, and Gmail; Google Docs provides access to some key word processing functions.

Smart chips allow you to easily tag people, files, and documents within documents. A stopwatch chip enables easy timekeeping with one simple shortcut.

Table of Contents

As with other Google Docs features, creating a table of contents on your document requires some manual effort on your part. Once section headers have been added to your document, select the “Normal text” drop-down on your toolbar and choose from one of its format preferences from this drop-down list to generate your table of contents.

Click “Table of Contents” from the Insert menu to add your document’s table of contents onto the screen. Choose between two styles, one featuring page numbers and another featuring blue links that link back to headings in your document.

Should any changes to your document require updates to its table of contents, updating will need to occur as well. It’s easy: just click in the table of contents area and a refresh button will appear; click it, and your table of contents will be updated immediately – or in an iOS app, for that matter.

Voice Typing

Google Docs computers equipped with built-in or external microphones offer voice typing functionality for creating and editing documents by speaking instead of typing, making the document creation/edit process quicker for those who may find typing difficult or who just want to save time. Voice typing may prove particularly helpful for people who find typing hard – such as those who might struggle with their keyboard – as well as for time saving purposes.

To activate Voice Typing, navigate to Tools > Voice Typing or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+S. When activated, the microphone icon will turn red indicating it’s ready to accept dictations – click this button when ready and start speaking into your document text!

Google recommends using typical voice volume and pace when working with this feature; in addition to having both English as an account language and document language as a requirement and valid internet connectivity to use this feature. Say “select word” to select specific phrases/words before following up with “bold”/”italicize” commands to format any changes made to selected text. Google recommends saying “select word” when selecting specific text for editing before calling bold/italicize as needed to change formatting of selected text. To use this feature effectively you must have both English account and document languages configured correctly as well as valid/active internet connectivity to use this feature effectively.

Revision History

Google Docs makes collaboration easy by saving multiple versions of a document in Version History so that any crucial edits don’t get lost along the way. View them easily using an edit-history rundown on the right side of your document!

Google Docs allows you to save up to 40 named versions of a document, drawing, presentation or spreadsheet. Each time you make changes, a copy is saved into Version History for safekeeping. To restore a previous version, open Google Docs and select the menu at the top left of your screen; choose “See revision history” then “Choose Revision History” before choosing which version(s) to restore.

Only users with editor access can view revision history on mobile devices; you can prevent viewers from seeing it by sharing files with “View only” permissions. In order to view or delete version histories in Google Drive folders, a Google account is needed and version history copies must exist in both cases.

Find and Replace

There’s nothing more time-consuming and costly than printing off lengthy business documents only to discover that you misspelled one or more client names. Google Docs makes this task faster and simpler with its “find and replace” feature which quickly detects spelling mistakes quickly and efficiently.

To use this feature, simply select the text that you would like to search and enter the word or phrase that you wish to replace it with in the “Replace with” text field at the bottom of the screen. When done, click ‘Replace’ if only one instance needs replacing or “Replace all” if all occurrences of that search term need updating simultaneously.

Mobile users can also take advantage of this feature. While its usage differs slightly from that on computers, you can access the find and replace feature by tapping either three dots (Android) or an icon (iOS) at the top of the screen – then select “Find and Replace” in the menu that appears – easy! Plus it saves time that would otherwise be spent manually correcting spelling errors!

Collaborative Editing

Google Docs makes collaboration easy when working on documents with colleagues in one room or across different locations – it tracks changes as they happen and preserves previous versions without counting against your storage capacity.

Not only can you edit in real-time, but you can also choose to view and comment on suggestions by your collaborators. The comment feature is particularly helpful for reviewing drafts of a single document. You can do this via a word bubble plus symbol that floats along the right edge of the toolbar, and by tagging certain collaborators you ensure their comments get to them quickly and efficiently.

An editor making changes simultaneously can be very disruptive and stressful, so to ease their workload you can enable a mode that converts changes to suggestions instead. This keeps original text alongside proposed new material while color-coding suggester marks identifies who made each change; you can then review each one independently before accepting or rejecting. Alternatively, Docs or Meet can offer discussion features that help your group make tough decisions together.

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