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7 Microsoft Word Hacks You Need to Know in 2020

Microsoft Word has been around for decades. This means that users have been discovering new ways to make their workflow better and more efficient. The huge selection of tools and features allows you to easily create documents in Word. In this article, we’ll introduce you to all the Word time savers you need to know about in 2020.
Microsoft Word

Being the most popular word processor software, Word fulfills many purposes in both professional settings as well as personal needs. The interface is appealing and easy to use for all demographics all around the world. Our article focuses on introducing you to 7 tips and tricks beyond the basic features of Word. 

Before we start, let’s take a look at some common principles to follow when working with Word. These rules aren’t set in stone, however, you should always keep them in mind when typing something up: 

  • Prepare and research. A great document is always well researched. Before starting on your work, always prepare your materials and sources! This allows you to start your work off with confidence without ever having to stop your flow.
  • Use high-quality images. If your document requires images for illustration, don’t settle for poor quality. Even if you don’t want to spend money on buying images, websites such as Pexels and Adobe Stock offer free images for you to work with.
  • Know your audience. Are you preparing for a business document? Is it a project for college? Or are you writing for children? Always know who your audience will be so you can create your presentation with a better understanding of their needs.
  • Choose your fonts wisely. Fonts make or break your documents. Always use readable fonts that fit the style of your document. It’s also a good idea to choose different fonts for your headers and body text.
  • Enable grammar check. Don’t forget to check for any spelling or grammatical errors in your document right from Word! A neat, well-written document will leave a must better impression on your readers.

7 Microsoft Word Hacks You Need to Know

Now, let’s see the 7 tips and hacks that will further enhance your Word documents.

1. Utilize useful shortcuts
Useful Microsoft Word Shortcuts

Using the Ctrl + A shortcut in Word 

Performing repetitive actions over and over again can be tedious; this applies to Word as well. Sure, it might not take that long to perform a few extra clicks, but those additional seconds can add up to minutes wasted. Using keyboard shortcuts makes your workflow faster and allows you to focus on your content. 

Here are some of the main shortcuts I like to use when I work in Word: 

  • Ctrl + Enter: Insert an automatic page break
  • Double click and Triple-click: Select a word or paragraph
  • Ctrl + Shift + C: Copy the formatting of selected text
  • Ctrl + Shift + N: Apply the Normal style
  • Ctrl + F: Open the Find tab
  • Ctrl + A: Select all contents of your document
  • Ctrl + Z: Undo the last action

2. Delete entire words at once
Delete Entire Words at once

Deleting entire words at a time 

Sometimes you want to reword a sentence or simply remove it from your paragraph. You can move your mouse and select it, however, you can also quickly get rid of it by holding a single key. 

You can delete an entire word by holding the Ctrl key along with Backspace to speed up your work a little. Repeat this and quickly remove sentences or even entire paragraphs.

3. Add placeholder text with ease
Add Place Holder Text

Did you know that there is an integrated “Lorem ipsum” generator in Microsoft Word? You can use it to quickly add in placeholder text without having to leave the application and find it online. 

To get placeholder text in your document quickly, type in = rand (P, L) or =lorem (P, L), replacing the letters in the brackets with numbers. The letter 'P' corresponds to the number of paragraphs you want. The letter 'L' defines the number of lines each paragraph has. 

For example, typing in = lorem(2,6) will generate a “Lorem ipsum” text that is two paragraphs long, each paragraph containing six lines of text. 

If you want a different placeholder, use the rand variation. This will insert random sentences from the Word help files, instead of the made-up language of “Lorem ipsum.”

4. Type anywhere on your pages
Type Anywhere on your Pages

If you’ve ever used Microsoft Publisher, you know that being able to write anywhere on your page opens up many possibilities. Did you know that this is possible in Microsoft Word as well? 

Double-click on the spot you want your text to start at, and start typing like you normally would. This will make the creation of tables and designing page layouts a whole lot easier.

5. Learn how to use Smart Lookup
Use Smart Lookup

By selecting a word and right-clicking on it, you have the ability to use a tool called Smart Lookup.

By utilizing it, you can quickly search the web from inside Word itself. Get information about a word, such as its definition, the word’s origin, pronunciation, and much more.

6. Customize your Ribbon interface
Customize Word Ribbon Interface

Do you have a set of tools you want to reach easier and faster, or have you simply grown tired of the default Ribbon provided by Microsoft? You can quickly and easily alter the Ribbon.

By navigating to the File menu, then clicking on Options, you can see the Customize Ribbon option. Here, you can see the Ribbon broken down to tabs. You can now alter what commands appear inside it to make your experience using Word more personalized.

This makes your experience with Word more customized and allows you to quickly reach your most-used tools. Speed your workflow up by having everything you need one click away.

7. Avoid eye strain
Use a different color theme

If you have sensitive eyes, or simply prefer a different look rather than the bright white and blue default, use a different color theme. You have the opportunity to change to a more mellow sepia color scheme or use the dark inverse theme to make pages easier to read for you. No need to worry - for everyone else, the document remains the same.

Final thoughts

We hope that this article was able to help you learn more about Microsoft Word and just how powerful of a tool it is. Return to our page anytime you need further guidance regarding Microsoft’s word-processing app. 

If you’re looking to read more articles related to modern technology, consider subscribing to our newsletter. We regularly publish tutorials, news articles, and guides to help you in your day-to-day tech life.

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