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How to Add Footnotes in Google Docs? (Steps with Pictures)

Your documents will look better when you know how to add footnotes in Google Docs, and the reader will be able to comprehend your documents more easily.
how to add footnotes in google docs

Imagine you’re working on a document in Google Docs that needs footnotes. If you don’t know how to add footnotes correctly, it can be even more tedious than it already is. Worry not. You aren’t the only one.

At some point, nearly all users will experience this problem. So how to insert footnotes in google docs on different devices? Read on to learn about how to add footnotes in Google Docs.

How to Add a Footnote in Google Docs?

The practice of using footnotes to manage citations, comments, or even links to sources is widespread regardless of what kind of document you are creating. You can cite your sources more efficiently if you know how to use footnotes in Google Docs, whether you’re on the web or via the Google Docs mobile app. However, adding footnotes in Google Docs can be annoying as it isn’t the same as you do it in your Word Document.

Fortunately, once you learn how to add a footnote in Google Docs, you will quickly get the hang of it. So, in this article, we will look at footnotes in closer detail and check out how to use footnotes in Google Docs in a step-by-step guide with images. Let’s start it;

How to Insert a Footnote in Google Docs on PC?

PC is the most common way to access Google Docs and work on any document. Using footnotes helps you contextualize your writing and shows the reader your research and synthesis efforts. Here are the steps you need to follow on your computer to add footnotes to your Google Doc.

  • Open your document in Google Docs. Then put your cursor exactly where you want the footnote to be placed. This is where the number will appear.  
Open a document to insert footnotes in google docs
  • To add a footnote, go to the menu tab and select Insert, then click on Footnote. You can also press Ctrl+Alt+F. This will automatically take you to the end of your page.
Select footnotes to insert footnotes in Google Docs
  • The footnote number should be visible at the end of the page. Put the information for your footnote in the box provided. That’s it.
Insert footnotes in Google Docs successfully

How to Use Footnotes in Google Docs on Mobile?

Mobile apps can also be a handy way to keep up with your work on the go. As with Google Docs on the web, adding footnotes on the Google Docs mobile app is just as easy. Here are the steps on how to do it. Next up is how to add footnotes in the Google Docs mobile app.

  • Open Google Docs and, navigate to the document, click on Edit. Tap the cursor where you want the footnote.  
Open a document to insert footnotes in google docs mobile
  • On the top of the screen, there’s a plus sign. Tap on it to open the insert menu. Choose Footnote from the list of options.  
Select footnote to insert footnotes in Google Docs
  • Type the text you want to add and tap on the tick. It will take you to the bottom text box for a footnote. The footnote will be added.
Insert footnotes in Google Docs successfully mobile

How to Use the Same Footnote Twice in Google Docs?

How to use the same footnote twice in Google Docs is a question that many people get stuck with. Because the general practice for footnotes in Google Docs is to have a unique number for each footnote, even if the footnote text is the same, it will still generate a new numbered footnote. So, here’s a little trick on how you can use the same footnote twice in your Google doc.

Step 1:  

Open your Google Doc, add your text file and simply insert a footnote as you usually do.

Insert footnote in google docs

Step 2:

Now repeat the step to add different footnotes. For each footnote you add, Google Docs will give it a unique number, even if the text is the same.

Add different footnotes in Google Docs

Step 3: 

Now erase the 3rd footnote number from the text and add a simple 1.

update footnote number to one in google docs

Step 4:

Now mark this 1 text and go to the Format tab. Select Text, then navigate to Superscript and click on it.

superscript in google docs

Step 5:  

The 1 you typed will look as if it is indicating the same footnote of 1st. Even in PDF formats or prints, the reader will get the idea that with 1 you mean the same footnote.

use the same footnote in google docs

This trick might seem a little odd. But this is the only way to use the same footnote twice in Google Docs.

How to Add Multiple Footnotes in Google Docs?

If you want to give a reference to something you are writing about or add a comment but don’t want to interrupt the flow of your text, footnotes are a handy way of doing so. However, there are times when you need to add up multiple footnotes in your document because there is an extensive background behind many points.  

Well, there’s no need to worry. Adding multiple footnotes in Google Docs is the same as adding the first footnote. Here are the steps;

  • Place your cursor where you want the footnote to appear. Then select the insert tab and click on the footnote. Add text to your footnote.  
  • For the second footnote, follow step 1, place your cursor where you want the footnote, and insert it by repeating step 1 or pressing Ctrl+Alt+F on your keyboard.
  • For each footnote, Google Docs will give a different number.
Add different footnotes in Google Docs

How to Add Chicago Style Footnotes in Google Docs?

Chicago style especially favors historical research. The reader can focus on the evidence when a historical explanation is constructed by utilizing footnotes rather than looking at the end to check the bibliography. Simply put, Chicago-style footnotes provide readers with a shortened version of the original citation so that they can focus on the content. Therefore, knowing how to add Chicago-style footnotes in Google Docs is helpful. You can do it by following these steps;

Step 1:

Place your cursor where a citation is given. Then go to the Insert tab and click on Footnote.

Choose the document to add Chicago style footnote in Google Docs

Step 2:

This will take you to the bottom of the page to write in the Footnote box. The Google docs automatically number the footnote for you.

Type the Author’s name and the title of their publication in Chicago style. Ensure that your text is formatted correctly like using “Times New Roman” for font style, 1/2 indent at the beginning of the paragraph, 1 inch margins, and more. You can follow this requirement to adjust the footnotes.  

Chicago style footnote requirements

And your Chicago-style footnote is ready.

For a more detailed guide, you can watch this video tutorial.

Final words

In many documents, sources and references play an imperative role. It is easy to add footnotes in Google Docs, no matter what device you use – whether a desktop computer or a mobile device. We hope you have learned how to add footnotes in Google Docs and will use this feature in the future.


Q1. How to remove footnotes in Google Docs?

You can delete a footnote by simply deleting its superscript number in the text. As a result, any subsequent footnotes will be reordered accordingly after the corresponding footnote is deleted.

Q2. How to add a page number in Google Docs?

You can add page numbers to entire Google Documents from the Format menu in the taskbar. In the format window, select ‘Page numbers.’ You can change the position and numbering of the pages based on your preferences.

Q3. How to add a header in Google Docs on iPad?

In Google Docs, you can add a header or footer by double-clicking the margins. For another option, you can click Insert, then select Headers & Footers to add the header in Google docs on iPad.

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