How to Check Word Count in Google Docs

Whether you’re a student or a professional, writing an essay, report, or article may require you to stick to a word limit. This guide explains how to check the word count in Google Docs, how to check it directly in the app, and how to use the browser extension. It also looks at how the number of words in a Google document can differ from the number of other apps.

Content
  1. How to Check Word Count in Google Docs
  2. How to Check Word Count in Google Docs: Using a Browser Extension
  3. How to Check Word Count in Google Docs: Varying Word Count

How to Check Word Count in Google Docs

Checking the word count in Google Docs is very easy. To use the word count hotkey, do the following:

  1. Open the Google Doc you want to check.

  2. In macOS, click Command+Shift+C ; in Windows press Ctrl+Shift+C .

It’s that simple. However, you can also check the word count in Google Docs using the toolbar instead of a keyboard shortcut.

  1. Open the Google Doc you want to check.

  2. Select Tools in the menu bar at the top of the page.

  3. Once you open the “Tools” drop-down menu, scroll down and select Number of words .

How to Check Word Count in Google Docs: Using a Browser Extension

While the above method will give you an up-to-date word count for your article, some authors may want their Google Docs word count to be displayed continuously while they’re writing. Unfortunately, Google Docs doesn’t offer such functionality, so users have to download the browser add-on:

  1. Open the Google Doc you want to check.

  2. Select Add-ons top of the page.

  3. Select Get extras.

  4. Enter Number of words in the search bar.

  5. Scroll down to Number of words .

  6. Press the blue button + Free to download the add-on.

  7. Select account to link the Better Word Count app.

  8. Select to allow to give the app the necessary permissions.

This will add the extension to your Google Docs. It can be used as follows:

  1. Open the Google Doc you want to check.

  2. Select Add-ons top of the page.

  3. Select Best word count .

  4. Select Open Utilities .

Completing step 4 opens the add-on and opens a sidebar that shows users the word count as they type. This may only result in minor changes, but it can save a significant amount of time, especially compared to opening a window every time you want to check the word count.

How to Check Word Count in Google Docs: Varying Word Count

Checking the word count in Google Docs is easy enough. However, users should know exactly how Google Docs counts words, as there are differences in the way different apps calculate their totals.

Google Docs includes em (-) and en (-) word counts, while Microsoft Word doesn’t, for example. Thus, users can find that they get more words from the Google app.

Likewise, people who embed links in their documents may notice more words in Google Docs than in other applications like WordPress or Microsoft Word. For example, “https://www.lifewire.com/how-to-check-word-count-on-google-docs-4172394” counts as five words in Google Docs, while WordPress and Microsoft Word only count as one.

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