How to Get a Word Count for a Document in Google Docs

Anything that can help to automate a difficult task can be useful when you are working on your computer.

Since the word count of a document is something that you may need to know for a document that you are editing, then you might be wondering how to insert word count in Google Docs documents or view that information on the screen.

Our tutorial below will show you a short series of steps that can help you to accomplish this so that you can easily determine the number of words that are in one of your Google documents.

How to Find Word Count on Google Docs

  1. Click the Tools tab.
  2. Choose the Word Count option.
  3. Locate the word count to the right of Words.

Our article continues below with additional information on finding the Google Docs word count, including pictures of these steps.

Word processing applications like Microsoft Word have long provided a way to get a word count or character count for a document, so it only makes sense that you can get that information for a Google Doc, too.

Fortunately, you are able to find your word count in Google Docs using an option in the menu or a keyboard shortcut.

Certain situations with documents will require you to reach a minimum word count. But when those word counts start getting higher, manually counting all of the words in a document can be both needlessly time-consuming and prone to error.

Fortunately, many word processing applications have tools that will give you a word count, including Google Docs.

Our guide below will show you where to find the word count tool in Google Docs to find this information. You will also be able to get a page count and a character count, if that information is also necessary for your task.

Related Topic: Find out how to insert a horizontal line in Google Docs if you need a visual separation in the body of your document.

How to Count the Number of Words in a Google Doc Document (Guide with Pictures)

The steps in this guide will help you quickly count the number of words in your entire document.

Step 1: Open your Google Drive by going to and double-clicking the document for which you need a word count.

Step 2: Click the Tools tab at the top of the window.

how to insert word count in google docs

Step 3: Click the Word Count option.

how to count number of words in google docs

You should now see a window like the one before that provides you with several counting-related pieces of information about your document. This window shows the number of pages, the number of words, the number of characters, and the number of characters without spaces.

how to get a word count in google docs

Note that you can also get Google Docs to provide you with a word count by using the Google Docs word count keyboard shortcut of Ctrl + Shift + C on your keyboard. On a Mac that keyboard shortcut is Command + Shift + C.

Related: How to Share Documents on Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides from Google Drive

Unfortunately, at the time of this writing, there is no option in Google Docs to get a live word count while you are editing your document. You will need to use the method above whenever you wish to see the number of words in your document.

Google Docs does now provide a way to count the words while typing in a Google Doc. Now when you open the Word Count window, there is an option at the bottom that says, “Display word count while typing.”

When you turn that on, there will be a little pop-up at the bottom-left corner of the screen indicating the total word count for the document. This ability to check the word count is really handy and can help to expedite your workflow.

You can also use it when you are trying to figure out how to insert word count in Google Docs documents.

If you have Microsoft Word, this article will show you where to locate the live word count.

More Information on How to Check the Word Count in Google Docs

  • When you check the word count in Google Docs, you see several pieces of information, including the page count, the total word count, the character count, and the characters excluding spaces count.
  • Words that you add to the header or footer of the document are not included when you check the word count in Google Docs.

Does your school or place of employment require your documents to have page numbers? Learn how to add page numbers in Google Docs to make it easier to find your place if your document is out of order.

Unfortunately, we can’t provide any additional information on how to insert word count in Google Docs because there isn’t a separate feature or object that allows you to include that information in your document content.

The best solution for this would be to enable the live word count at Tools > Word count > then check the Display word count while typing box.

This makes the number of words visible while you are typing. Once the document is finished, you could simply type the word count that you see into the header or footer or wherever you need to display the word count.

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy