How to Add Columns in Google Docs: A Step-by-Step Guide

Adding columns to a Google Docs document is a quick task: simply click on “Format”, hover over “Columns”, and select the number of columns you want. This change will instantly reformat your document into the chosen column layout.

After you complete this action, your document will be divided into the number of columns you selected, allowing for a more organized presentation of your content. This is particularly useful for newsletters, brochures, or any document that needs a magazine-style layout.


Google Docs is a versatile tool that allows you to create, edit, and share documents online. One of its handy features is the ability to add columns to your document, making it easier to structure your content in a more visually appealing way. Columns are particularly useful when creating documents like newsletters, brochures, or articles that benefit from a magazine-style format. By dividing your text into columns, you can make your document easier to read and navigate while also giving it a professional look.

Adding columns in Google Docs is important for anyone who wants to present their content in a clear and organized manner. Whether you’re a student, a professional, or just someone looking to improve the layout of your documents, learning how to add columns is a useful skill. This article is relevant to anyone who uses Google Docs for work, school, or personal projects and is looking to enhance their document formatting skills.

Related: How to Change Paper Size on Google Docs: A Step-by-Step Guide

Step by Step Tutorial: Adding Columns in Google Docs

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’re aiming for. Adding columns to your Google Docs will organize your content into separate vertical sections, which can improve readability and aesthetic appeal.

Step 1: Open your Google Docs document

Open the document you want to add columns to.

Step 2: Click on the “Format” menu

In your document, click on the “Format” menu at the top of the page.

This is where you’ll find all the formatting options for your document. Once you’ve clicked on “Format,” you’ll see a dropdown menu with various options.

Step 3: Hover over “Columns”

After clicking on “Format,” hover over the “Columns” option.

You will see another menu pop up to the side, showing you different column configurations.

Step 4: Select the number of columns

Click on the number of columns you want to add to your document.

Google Docs allows you to choose from one, two, or three columns. If you need more than three, there’s also an option to add more columns through a custom configuration.


Improved ReadabilityAdding columns to your Google Docs can make the document easier to read, especially for longer texts. By breaking up the text into smaller, more manageable chunks, readers can follow along without getting lost in a sea of words.
Professional LayoutDocuments with columns often look more professional and are visually appealing. This can be particularly important for formal documents or materials that will be shared with a wider audience.
Organized ContentColumns help to organize your content in a structured way. This is especially useful for documents that cover multiple topics or have different sections, as each column can be dedicated to a specific topic or category.


Limited FlexibilityOnce you add columns to your Google Docs, the text will automatically flow from one column to the next. This may limit your flexibility in terms of layout and design, as you’ll have to work within the constraints of the column format.
Potential Formatting IssuesAdding columns can sometimes cause formatting issues, especially if you’re working with images or other non-text elements. This may require additional adjustments to ensure everything is displayed correctly.
Content May Be Split UnintentionallyWhen you add columns, Google Docs will automatically distribute the content across them. This could lead to headings or paragraphs being split in ways you didn’t intend, requiring you to manually adjust where each section starts and ends.

Additional Information

Adding columns in Google Docs is more than just a simple formatting feature. It allows you to create dynamic and engaging documents that stand out. When working with columns, remember to keep your content concise; columns are best suited for shorter text blocks rather than lengthy paragraphs. Also, consider the balance of your document – too much text in one column can throw off the visual harmony. Feel free to experiment with different numbers of columns to see which layout looks best for your specific document.

Another useful tip is to use column breaks to manage the flow of content. This can help you control exactly where a paragraph ends and the next one begins in your column layout. Moreover, if you’re looking to add more than three columns or need more control over the width and spacing, the “More options” selection under the “Columns” menu will be your best friend.

Remember that while columns can greatly enhance the look of your document, they work best when used appropriately. Not every document will benefit from a multi-column layout, so consider your content and audience before making the switch.


  1. Open your Google Docs document.
  2. Click on the “Format” menu.
  3. Hover over “Columns.”
  4. Select the number of columns.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I add more than three columns to my Google Docs document?

You can add more than three columns by selecting the “More options” choice under the “Columns” menu in the “Format” tab.

Can I adjust the width of the columns in Google Docs?

Yes, you can adjust the width and spacing of the columns by selecting “More options” in the “Columns” menu and customizing the settings.

Will adding columns affect the entire document?

By default, adding columns will affect the entire document, but you can apply column formatting to specific sections using section breaks.

Can I add columns to only part of my document?

Yes, you can add columns to specific parts of your document by inserting section breaks before and after the portion you want to format.

What should I do if my content is split between columns in a way I don’t like?

You can manually adjust where each section starts and ends by inserting column breaks, ensuring your content is divided exactly how you want it.


In conclusion, adding columns in Google Docs is a simple process that can greatly improve the layout and readability of your document. Whether you’re a student organizing a research paper, a business professional creating a flyer, or just someone looking to enhance the visual appeal of your document, columns can help you achieve a polished and professional look.

Remember to consider the content and purpose of your document before adding columns and don’t hesitate to use the “More options” feature for greater control over your layout. With a bit of practice and experimentation, you’ll be a pro at using columns in no time!