Format text in Docs

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Use the toolbar and settings menu to create engaging and consistent content for any audience.

Format text with elements that stand out like banners, headings, highlights, and code blocks. Insert buttons and dividers to add style or use a sticky table of contents to organize.

You can also use hotkeys and keyboard shortcuts or /Slash Commands to format text.

What you'll need

Docs toolbar

Apply formatting options to specific text in a Doc using the toolbar.

  1. Select text in a Doc.

    Screenshot showing the Docs formatting toolbar.
  2. Use the toolbar to adjust your text formatting:

    • Turn into: Convert the selected text into headings, banners, code blocks, or a quote block.

    • Rich text: Bold, italics, underline, strikethrough, inline code formatting.

    • Font color: Select from a range of vibrant text colors and highlights.

    • Alignment: Indent and set text to left, center, or right justified.

    • Bulleted List: Format text into a Bulleted List.

      • All Lists: Click the caret icon next to the Bulleted List icon to format text into a Numbered List or Toggled List.

        • Tip: Numbered Lists can continue or restart numbering around other formatting, such as a banner or image.

    • Check List: Format text into a Check List.

    • Insert a link: Insert a hyperlink.

    • Create subpage: Create a series of subtopics that are part of the main Doc.

    • Create comment: Add comments about the Doc to the right sidebar of the Doc. Text that has comments is highlighted.

    • Create task: Create a new task using the highlighted text as the task name.

    • Misc Setting: Open formatting settings.

Formatting settings

From the Docs toolbar, access formatting settings by clicking the ellipsis ... icon.

Screenshot showing the ellipsis menu in the Docs formatting toolbar.

You can adjust your toolbar position in the following ways:

  • Default: The toolbar only displays above the selected text.

  • Pinned: The toolbar always displays at the top of a Doc.

You can only pin the toolbar when in fullscreen mode. 

  • Floating: The toolbar can be dragged and dropped anywhere on the page, and will stay in that location while you scroll.

Additional options include:

  • Undo: Undo your last action.

  • Redo: Redo your last action.

  • Insert: Add a task, comment, image, divider, toggle list, table, list of tasks, button, table of contents, or embed a YouTube video.

  • Clear Format: Clears any previous formatting from the selected area.

  • Copy Markdown: Converts markdown into rich text.

Content blocks

Content blocks allow you to organize and style your content as a block, rather than line by line.

Hover over a content block, such as a paragraph of text, an image, or an item is a list to reveal the drag handle.

  • Click and drag to move your content. While dragging, guidelines will appear to help you position your content.
  • Click the drag handle to open the content block menu.

Screenshot of the drag handle on a text content block.

The options available will vary depending on the type of content. For text, you can:

  • Turn into: Apply formatting such as headings, lists, code block, quote, or banners.
  • Duplicate: Create another instance of your content block.
  • Copy Block Link: Copy the URL to the content block to your clipboard.
  • Delete

Screenshot of the content block menu for text.

Not sure where to start? Click the + icon on an empty page to add a content block or set text formatting.

Content blocks are also available in taskssubtasks, WhiteboardColumnsChat viewtext block Dashboard cards, and Notepad.

Use banners to organize content

Use banners to organize or draw attention to sections in your Doc or page. You can create a  banner by highlighting text, or using a /Slash Command.

To add a banner:

  1. Highlight the text you want to turn into a banner.
  2. On the left, click the drag handle.
  3. Hover over Turn Into.
  4. From the dropdown menu, hover over Banner.
  5. Select a color from the dropdown.

To change an existing banner's color:

  1. Hover over the banner.
  2. On the left, click the drag handle.
  3. Hover over Background Color.
  4. Select a color from the dropdown.

You can quickly exit a banner by clicking Return on Mac or Enter on PC three times.

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