How to Merge Two or More Microsoft Word Documents

Create a primary document for ease of access

When you want to combine multiple Microsoft Word documents into one, copying content from each and pasting it into another document isn't efficient. It can be time-consuming, especially when dealing with several documents or complex formatting. Here's the best way to merge Word documents.

Instructions in this article apply to Word for Microsoft 365, Word 2019, Word 2016, Word 2013, Word 2010, and Word for Mac.

Merge Two or More Word Documents 

Follow the directions below to combine Word documents into one primary file.

  1. Open the file you wish to serve as the main document.

  2. Place the cursor at the point of the document where you wish to insert the new content.

  3. Go to the Insert tab, located near the upper-left corner of Word.

    The Insert menu in Word
  4. In the Text section, select Object.

    The Object menu in the Text section
  5. In the drop-down menu, select Object.

    Choose Text from File if you want to insert plain text from a source file and aren't concerned with maintaining the formatting or retaining the images.

  6. In the Object dialog box, go to the Create from File tab.

    The Create from File tab
  7. Select Browse on Windows, or From File on macOS.

    The Browse button
  8. Locate and select the file or files containing the contents you wish to insert into the document.

  9. When the File name is field is populated with the proper path and the source files, select OK on Windows, or Insert on macOS.

  10. The contents from the destination files are inserted into the current Word document at the location you selected. These steps can be repeated for multiple documents if you like.

Merge Different Versions of a Single Document

When several people work on a single document, you have multiple versions of the same document. These versions can also be merged into one primary file without manually copying and pasting. However, the process for doing so is a bit different than detailed above.

  1. Go to the Review tab.

    The Review tab in Word
  2. Select Compare.

    The Compare section in Word
  3. In the drop-down menu, select Combine or Combine Documents

    The Compare command
  4. In the Combine Documents dialog box, select the main document. Either select the Original document drop-down arrow and choose the file or select the folder icon.

    The drop-down menu arrow and folder button
  5. Choose the document to merge with the main document. Select the Revised document drop-down arrow and choose the file containing the changes. 

    The drop-down menu and folder button
  6. Select the More button in Windows or the down arrow in macOS. This presents several optional settings that dictate how the two files are compared, along with how changes appear in the new document.

    The More button
  7. Once satisfied with the settings, select OK to merge the documents accordingly. Both files appear side-by-side, along with a record of revisions and the corresponding details.