How to Create and Use Google Doc Bookmarks

Easily link to specific parts of a doc or to another doc

When working in Google Docs, having a linked table of contents or some way to jump to bookmarks in the document can make navigation easier—especially when you’re dealing with large documents. Google Docs bookmarks can also be used to link to specific places in other documents, or they can be shared individually. Here’s how to use bookmarks in Google docs, including creating, removing, and sharing them.

How to Add a Bookmark in Google Docs

Adding a bookmark in Google Docs is really a two step process. First you have to add the bookmark, then link to it from other places in the document or from within other documents.

  1. First, find and select the text you want to use as the bookmark.

  2. Select Insert from the menu at the top of the page.

    The Insert menu in Google Docs.
  3. Select Bookmark.

    The location of the Bookmark option in Google Docs.
  4. A blue ribbon will appear to the left of the selected text to show where the bookmark was added.

    A bookmark ribbon in Google Docs.

How to Link to Google Doc Bookmarks

Once you’ve added a bookmark to the text in your document, the second part of creating a bookmark takes place—linking to that bookmark. It’s as easy as adding a hyperlink, but instead of linking to a web page, you’ll link to the bookmark you just added.

  1. Select the text you want to be able to click to jump to a bookmarked spot in your document.

    Highlighted text in Google Docs
  2. Select Insert > Link

    The location of the Link option in Google Docs.

    Alternatively, you can select the hyperlink icon in the top toolbar to get to the same place.

  3. In the menu that appears, select Bookmarks, then select the desired bookmark from the list that appears.

    The bookmarks link options in Google Docs
  4. Select Apply and the anchor text will become underlined and blue and a menu appears beneath it. The next time you select that link, it will take you to the bookmark you placed during the first part of the exercise.

    The Apply option to apply a bookmark link in Google Docs.

Use Google Docs Bookmarks to Link to Another Doc

Another way to use Google Doc bookmarks is to link from one document to another. For example, if you have two docs, and there is a section of one that you want to link to from the other, you can use a bookmark to open that doc and jump straight to the correct section.

To use a bookmark to link two documents, you must own or have editing access to both documents. Anyone else who accesses the document with the link in it will also need to have access to both documents. You can grant that access by sharing them from Google Drive.

  1. Open both Google documents.

  2. In the document you want to link to, place a bookmark at the desired spot using the instructions above.

  3. Once you’ve created the bookmark, a small menu appears below the bookmark with two options: Link and Remove.

    The bookmark Link and Remove options in Google Docs.
  4. Right-click Link, then select Copy Link Address.

    The Copy link address option in Google Docs.

    You can copy this link at any time, and you can share the link via email or other digital messaging formats. Users who receive the link will have to be granted permission to access the document, but once they are, the link will lead them to that exact spot in the document.

  5. In the other document, select the text you want to link from and select the Insert Link icon the toolbar.

  6. Paste the link you copied from the other document and select Apply.

  7. The blue, underlined link is inserted in your document. When you select it, it should take you to the bookmarked spot in the other document.

How to Remove Google Docs Bookmarks

Over time, documents change, and you may find that you need to delete a Google Doc bookmark at some point. It’s easy to do, both from the bookmark and the link. 

To delete the bookmark, select the blue bookmark flag and in the menu that appears, select Remove. Then, to remove the bookmark link from the text, highlight the link and select the Remove Link option in the menu that appears. Be sure to highlight the entire link because only the highlighted portion of the link will be removed.

There’s also a pencil icon that allows you to edit the link if you need to change it or replace it with a different link.