Google Docs is the word processing component of Google’s online office suite. It is a free alternative to Microsoft Word. It also has more functions than you think.
In this article, we will answer the most frequently asked questions about Google Docs.

What Is Google Docs?

Google Docs is Google’s browser-based word processor. You can create, edit, and share documents online, and access them from any computer with an Internet connection. There are even mobile apps for Android and iOS.

What distinguishes Google Doc from its main desktop competitor, Microsoft Word, is its collaboration capabilities. Google Docs is one of the first word processors to provide shared online document editing.

Google makes it easy to share documents across platforms and work together in real time from a browser window. Your collaborators don’t even need a Google account to view or edit the Google documents you share with them.

In addition, the Google Doc plugin allows you to extend functions and add missing functions.

How to Use Google Docs

You can use Google Doc as Word documents. Create new documents, use Google Docs templates, share documents with your team, and collaborate in real time. We’ll show you the basics here.

How to Create a Google Doc

To create a new Google document, first go to and sign in with your Google account. After entering the Google Docs home page, you can create a new blank document or choose a template.

You can also go to File > New > Document or File > New > From template to do the same from within an existing Google Doc.

What Is Google Docs? How to Use It Like a Pro

From the File menu, you can also change many aspects of the document, including the page orientation.

How to Save a Google Doc

As part of Google’s online office suite, you don’t need to remember to save the document because Google will automatically save it to your Google Drive. Therefore, you will not find the save button.

That said, from the File menu, you can Make a CopyEmail, or Download your Google Doc.

How to Download Google Docs

What Is Google Docs? How to Use It Like a Pro

Google stores your documents on Google Drive. To download a Google Doc to your computer instead, go to File > Download and choose your desired file format.

How to Email a Google Doc

What Is Google Docs? How to Use It Like a Pro

If you want to download the document because you want to email it, you can do that directly from the document. Go to File > Email > Email this file / Email collaborators, choose the file format you want to attach, and fill in the standard email details.

How to Share a Google Doc

However, we recommend sharing it rather than emailing the document. This is because sharing allows everyone to see and work on the same version of the document. In this way, you can avoid creating conflicting copies or duplicating your work. As mentioned above, the recipient does not need a Google account to view or edit the document.

To share a Google document from within the document, click the share button in the upper right corner. You now have several options:

You can enter the name or email address of the desired recipient. Please note that the default access level for this method is editor. Click the pencil icon on the right to change it to a viewer or commenter.

What Is Google Docs? How to Use It Like a Pro

You can share the document with the group through the link in the “Get Link” menu instead of sharing the document with others. By default, your private Google Docs will be shared with anyone.

If your Google account belongs to an organization (here:, it will be shared within that organization. Users who click Change or Share with to adjust these settings and grant access to link viewers, commenters, or editors.

When done, click the copy link in the lower right corner. The link will be copied to your clipboard.

If you want to share a copy of your Google Docs with multiple collaborators because you don’t want them to edit the original document, you can also use this copy technique to save yourself some work.

How to Track Changes in Google Docs

When you frequently change Google Docs or share it with others, you will need to keep track of the changes.


Version History

Google Docs does this automatically by tracking your document’s version history. Go to File > Version History > See version history to expand a menu that lists all the changes Google has tracked for your document.

You’ll see when changes were made, who made them, and they’re all highlighted in the document.

What Is Google Docs? How to Use It Like a Pro

You can even name the current version to easily revert changes made afterward. Either go to File > Version History > Name current version, enter a name, and click Save.

Alternatively, go to the version history menu and click on the date or name of a version to rename it. In the version history menu, you can then enable a setting to only show named versions (see screenshot above).

Version history is the basic way to keep track of changes. You can restore the document version by selecting the document and clicking the Restore this version button. What you can’t do is accept or discard individual changes in each version. If this is the function you want, you must use a different function: mode.

Suggestion Mode

Google Docs supports three different modes: edit, suggest, and view. Editing is the default mode. To switch to another mode, go to “View”> “Mode” or click the pencil icon at the far right of the Tools menu. To control individual changes, use prompts.

When making changes in “Suggestion” mode, you will see a comment on the right side of the document with options to accept or reject the suggestion. You can also write a reply to discuss each change.

All changes made in this mode are individually recorded in the corresponding document version in the version history. This way, you can choose to view and restore the rejected changes, although you must restore that version of the document, which means you will lose all subsequent changes.

Tip: To force your collaborators to use the prompt mode, set their access permissions to comment when sharing documents.

How to Print From Google Docs

Printing from Google Docs is like printing any other document on your computer. To print a Google Doc, open the document and go to “File”> “Print” or press the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + P or click the print icon in the Tools menu.

Each of these actions will open your print menu. From here, select your printer and settings, and then print as usual.

How to Edit Google Docs Offline

To edit your Google Docs offline, you must meet some basic conditions. First, you must be online when setting up offline access. You should also use Google Chrome outside of incognito mode, install and enable the Google Docs Offline Chrome extension, and have enough free storage space to save your files.

After is complete, go to, click the hamburger menu in the upper left corner, go to “Settings”, and make sure that the slider next to “Offline” is in the “On” position (see screenshot below).

Now all the documents you start working on can also be used offline on your computer, at least temporarily. The cloud icon next to the document name indicates whether your document is available offline.

When your internet connection drops, you will see a cross cloud and a “work offline” note. Once you reconnect to the Internet, the changes you make will be synced.

After enabling the Google Docs Offline extension, you can even view the list of all documents on while offline. All documents that are permanently available offline have a check mark icon. Touch the three-dot menu to control the options available offline.

The Google Docs Offline extension will also cache all the documents you open. If you lose your Internet connection, you can even access documents that are not explicitly available offline.

In this case, you can make the document available offline permanently, even if you are offline. At the same time, documents that are not cached and cannot be used offline will be muted.

To backup and sync Google Docs files on your computer or mobile phone, you can also use Google Drive Backup and Sync tool.

Google Docs, Now Under Your Control

Now you understand the basics of how to use Google Docs. Next, it’s time to explore great ways to create beautiful Google documents. Then, you can continue to explore the functions of business documents and voice input in Google Docs.

Related: How to Insert the Degree Symbol in Microsoft Word