How to track changes in Google Docs? (3-Step Process)
Written by: Hrishikesh Pardeshi, Founder at Flexiple, buildd & Remote Tools.
Last updated: Jan 19, 2023
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- What is Track Changes?
- Why use Track Changes?
- How to Track Changes in Google Docs? 3 - Step Process
- FAQ: Track Changes in Google Docs
Google Docs is an ultimate document collaboration tool. It makes writing, editing, and collaborating a breeze. You would have come across the Track Changes feature in Microsoft Word. Now you're probably searching for the same feature in Google Docs. Worry not! In this article, we will take you through the 3-step process to track changes in Google Docs.
You can also skip directly to How to Track Changes in Google Docs
What is Track Changes?
The Track Changes is a feature in Microsoft Word that is used to keep track of changes you make to a document. The proposed changes can be reviewed by a second person, who gets to decide whether or not to keep them.
For instance, let's say Robert creates a document and sends it to his colleague for feedback. Next, his colleague can make changes to the document with the Track Changes feature on. Lastly, Robert can see what changes have been made and can choose to accept or reject them.
While the term Track Changes is popularized by Microsoft Word, it is also present in Google Docs as Suggesting Mode.
It works the same way as the feature in Microsoft Word. As a matter of fact, if you import a Google Doc into Microsoft Word or vice versa, all the changes are intact and visible.
Why use Track Changes?
The Track Changes feature makes the process of collaborating with team members much simpler and easier to manage. It is very helpful for sharing documents with colleagues as they often suggest and review the changes to a document.
Track changes is an easy way to see what changes have been made by others. Additionally, it gives more control to the owner of the document who can either choose to accept or reject any changes made to the document.
How to Track Changes in Google Docs? 3 - Step Process
Step 1: Start the suggesting mode
As mentioned earlier, the Track Changes feature is referred to in Google Docs as Suggestion Mode. To enable the suggestion mode, you need to navigate to the top right corner of the screen where it says ‘Editing.’ After you click on the dropdown menu, you will have 3 options: ‘Editing,’ ‘Suggesting,’ and ‘Viewing.’ Click on the ‘Suggesting’ mode to turn on the Google Docs version of Track Changes.
Step 2: Track changes in Google Docs
After you have entered the Suggesting mode, you can start making the changes to your document.
The new edits will appear on the page as edits rather than committed text. For example, each deletion appears as text with a strikethrough, and the new words that you type appear in green color.
Google Docs creates a summary box in the right side margin for every change you suggest. This box shows who suggested the changes and what it is. The summary boxes also give you and other editors the power to either approve or reject the changes.
Step 3: Accepting or rejecting suggestions
Once all the suggestions are added, you can view it all in the right-hand margin of the document. Here you can click on each suggestion box and also choose to either accept or reject the changes.
FAQ: Track Changes in Google Docs
1. How to use comments?
Comments are very helpful to add suggestions, notes, reviews, or to ask questions to other document collaborators.
You can add a comment by clicking the icon in the toolbar that looks like a plus sign inside the speech box. Another way to add comments is by highlighting a part of the text. The same icon will appear on the right edge of the document.
2. How do you track comments in Google Docs?
Comments appear in the right margin of the document. You can also have discussions right inside the comment with the collaborators.
To track the comments, go to the upper-right corner of the document page and click the text chat icon (Open Comment History). You can see all the comments, suggestions, and discussions that have taken place in the document. (Google Doc Tip: You can use the Ctrl+Alt+Shift+A in windows to open comment history)
3. How to use version history?
Version history is also helpful for collaborative writing and editing. Go to File and search for Version history. After that, you will see two options appear: Name Current Version and See Version History.
The Name Current Version option allows you to save a copy of your file before you open it up to other people for editing. While the other option, See Version History, shows you the previously saved versions of the file labeled by date and time.
4. Can you see the comments in viewing mode?
As the name suggests, viewing mode is only used for viewing the document. You cannot see the comments or make changes to the document in the viewing mode. In order to view the comments, you need to go to the editing or suggesting mode.
In conclusion, we hope that you have gotten the necessary information to track changes in Google Docs. Google Docs is a popular tool for document collaboration, but there are a few more alternatives that you may want to check out.