How To Insert a Checkbox in Google Docs in 2 Seconds

Have you ever manually typed out a list of tasks or items in your Google Docs, only to realize later that a checkbox would be much easier?

Inserting checkboxes makes it easy to mark off completed tasks without manual tracking or sorting. This can help you stay organized and improve efficiency when you’re working on complex or time-sensitive projects.

To add a checkbox in Google Docs, click the Checklist icon on the toolbar. Next, select whether you want the item to be strikethrough or not whenever the box has been checked. You can also use the shortcut Ctrl + Shift + 9.

In this guide, we’ll teach you how to insert a checkbox in Google Docs to streamline your task-tracking process.

What Is a Checkbox?


Checkboxes are widely used in various applications like surveys, forms, and to-do lists.

A checkbox is a user interface element that lets you select one or more options from a list. It typically appears as a small square box next to a label or text, indicating the purpose or meaning of the checkbox.

When a user clicks on a checkbox, it indicates that the associated option or feature is enabled or chosen. Conversely, when a user unchecks the checkbox, that option or feature is deselected.

Related: In addition to Docs, it’s easy to learn how to add checkboxes in Google Sheets.

How to Insert a Checkbox in Google Docs

There are a few different methods to insert checkboxes in Google Docs.

Method 1: Using the Checkbox Menu in the Toolbar

The easiest way to insert a checkbox in Google Docs is by using the checkbox button (located on the toolbar):

  1. Open the document in Google Docs.
  2. Highlight the text that you want the checkbox to appear.
  3. Click on the “Checklist menu” in the toolbar.
How to insert checkbox in Google Docs—the checkbox location in the Google Docs toolbar


  1. Choose whether you want it to have a strikethrough (or not).
Strikethrough or no strikethrough checkbox in Gdocs


  1. Now you can check or uncheck each checkbox.
Example of using checkbox in Google Docs

Method 2: Using the “Insert” Menu

Another easy way to add a checkbox in Google Docs is via the “Insert” menu. To get started, simply follow these steps:

  1. Open a new or existing Google Doc.
  2. Click on the “Insert” menu at the top of the page and select “Special characters” from the drop-down menu.
Insert option Special characters in Google Docs


  1. Type “check” in the search box of the “Insert special characters” window that appears.
  2. Click on your preferred Google Docs checkbox symbol that appears in the search results.
Insert special characters section and pick checkbox


  1. Click on the “Insert” button to add the checkbox to your document — that’s it!
Add Checkbox in Google Docs using the Insert option

Method 3: Using the Format Tab

Another way to insert a checkbox in Google Docs is via the Format tab. This efficient method allows for the insertion of multiple checkboxes at once.

  1. Open a new or existing Google Doc.
  2. Click the place where you want to insert a checkbox.
  3. Click on the Format menu at the top of the page.
  4. Select the “Bullets & numbering” option from the dropdown menu, then click “Checklist.”
  5. Click the “Checkbox” option in the Format tab.
location of checklist option in google docs


  1. The checkbox will appear. Click on the checkbox to mark it as completed.
GDocs Cleaning Home to Do List with Checkbox

Method 4: Using the Keyboard Shortcut

Using a keyboard shortcut to insert a checkbox is another easy way to get the job done. Simply follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Open a new or existing Google Doc.
  2. Type the items you want to be in the checkbox. Make sure each item has its line.
  3. Next, select where you want to insert the checkbox.
  4. Press the keys “Ctrl” + “Shift” + “9” (Windows) or CMD + SHIFT + 9 (Mac).
  5. Upon clicking, a checkbox will be inserted at the cursor’s location.
insert checkbox in google docs shortcut

How to Insert Checkbox in Google Docs on a Mobile Device

If you want to add a checkbox in Google Docs using a mobile device:

  1. Open the Google Docs app on your mobile device.
  2. Create a new document or open an existing one.
  3. Tap the “edit” button (pencil icon) at the bottom-right corner of the screen.
How to Insert Checkbox in Google Docs on mobile


  1. Next, highlight the texts where you want to insert the checkbox, then tap the “bullet list” icon at the bottom-right corner
How to Insert Checkbox in Google Docs - bulleted list


  1. Tap the “Checklist” icon
how to insert checklist on mobile device


  1. Repeat this process to add as many checkboxes as needed.
  2. To check or uncheck the checkbox, tap on it.
How to Insert Checkbox in Google Docs - tap or untap a checkbox


  1. Once done, tap the “check” button at the top-left side of the page
Done button for checklist on GDocs mobile version


Note: Inserting a checkbox in Google Docs on iPhone is similar to the steps for adding one on an Android device. However, the menus and icons may look slightly different.

How to Remove a Checkbox in Google Docs

If you made a mistake and want to remove a checkbox, simply select that checkbox and press the “Backspace” key on your keyboard. If you need to remove several checkboxes, highlight them, press the right-click mouse button, and click “Delete.”

Related: Discover easy ways to Count Checkboxes in Google Sheets.

Best Practices for Utilizing Checkboxes in Google Docs

When using checkboxes in a Google Doc, be sure to keep the user experience in mind. Here are some best practices for utilizing checkboxes in Google Docs:

Label Checkboxes Clearly

Use clear and concise labels for each checkbox so users understand each option. Avoid using vague abbreviations, technical jargon, or generic labels like “Option 1” or “Choice A” without context or meaning.

Group Related Checkboxes Together

If you have multiple checkboxes associated with a specific topic or question, group them together to make scanning and selecting options easier for users.

Provide Instructions or Context

If the checkboxes require additional context or instructions, provide them in the document or a separate section (to ensure users understand how to use them).

Use Checkboxes for Simple Choices

Checkboxes are best used for simple binary choices (e.g., yes, no, agree, disagree). Avoid using checkboxes for complex choices or multi-select options, as this can confuse users.

Test Your Document

Before sharing your Google Docs document, test the checkboxes to ensure they work correctly and provide the intended functionality. This will help prevent errors and ensure a positive user experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Add a Checkbox in Google Docs?

Yes, you can add a checkbox in Google Docs using different methods, such as the:

  • Checkbox Menu in the Toolbar
  • “Insert” Menu
  • Format Tab
  • Keyboard Shortcut “Ctrl” + “Shift” + “9” (Windows) or CMD + SHIFT + 9 (Mac).

When Do You Use a Checkbox?

Some of the most common scenarios where checkboxes are used include:

  • Allowing users to select one or more items from a list of options
  • Enabling or disabling a particular feature or functionality
  • Confirming or acknowledging an action (e.g., accepting terms and conditions, subscribing to a newsletter)
  • Filtering or sorting data based on user preferences
  • Indicating the completion of a task or marking an item as done

How Do You Insert a Checkbox in Google Docs Without a Strikethrough?

When you insert a checkbox in Google Docs, it has a strikethrough by default. However, you can remove the strikethrough by following these steps:

  1. Click on the checkbox you want to modify.
  2. Click on the inverted triangle icon (in the checkbox menu on the toolbar)
  3. Choose the checklist without strikethrough —  you’re good to go!

Wrapping Up

And that’s how to insert a checkbox in Google Docs! With this tool at your disposal, you can streamline your workflow, stay organized, and collaborate more efficiently with others. Go right ahead and try inserting checkboxes in your next Google Docs document – see how it can make your work easier!

We recommend checking out these GSuite courses to discover handy tips and tricks.

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