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Microsoft Word has dominated the word processing world for 36 years and counting. This software has the highest market share of any software with over a billion users typing in over 100 languages.

But that doesn’t mean it’s always easy to use. Word has hundreds (if not thousands) of special features that allow you to create editable documents, reports, and simple text files. Knowing how to use those features can also mean the difference between proficiency and incompetence.

ETS IT Solutions has compiled 10 easy tips. Almost all of these suggestions work with Word 2013, 2016, 2019 and Microsoft 365 (formally known as Office 365).  Work a few of these into your daily routine and let us know if it makes things easier for you.


1. Most used shortcuts.

The most popular shortcut keys are, Ctrl + C to copy, Ctrl + V to paste, and Ctrl + X to cut. These time-saving keystrokes can help you create documents faster and feel confident enough to tackle more complex tricks.

2. Select sentences or paragraphs.

A whole sentence can be selected by simply pressing and holding Ctrl (Windows) or Command (Mac) and clicking on any word. Alternatively, double-click a word to select it for editing; triple-click a paragraph.

3. Zoom in or out.

Need to refocus your document? Simply click on the view tab on the top bar and choose the view you feel comfortable with Alternatively, look for the “100%” tab with a slider in the bottom right corner of the document to easily zoom in or out. My personal favorite is holding Ctrl key and using the mouse scroll wheel.

4. Assess your text’s complexity.

Microsoft Word includes built-in grammar and spelling tools, as well as the Flesch Reading Ease.  This evaluates your sentence, paragraph length, word difficulty, and overall readability. By default, this setting is turned off. To enable this, go to File in the top right corner Options > Proofing and check “Show Readability Statistics”. (Mac: Preferences > Spelling and Grammar.) Keep in mind the readability statistic will only show up once you cleared all spelling and grammar mistakes.

5. Save a Word file as another type.

Microsoft Word makes switching between document formats simple. When you Save a new file or click Save As, a drop-down menu appears with a variety of file formats. I personally use it to create PDFs right on Microsoft Word

6. Format a document.

If you need to change an entire document rather than just one attribute, use Ctrl + Space or the Clear All Formatting button. So you can start over with a document styled to your liking.

7. Make your document linkable.

Incorporate web sources and other Internet references into your document. To add a web link, simply highlight the words you want and use keyboard shortcut Ctrl + K. Then enter your link address.

8. Default to your favorite font.

Do not like Calibri? Prefer Arial and Times New Roman, or Verdana’s modern feel? A great feature that is overlooked is Microsoft Word’s ability to customize the default font, so you don’t have to change it every time you start a new document. To change your default font click on the home tab and the arrow in the bottom right of the font section, choose your font and select set as default in the bottom left corner.

9. Instantly find any word.

Press Ctrl + F and enter the word your looking for, Microsoft Word will highlight them throughout the document.

10. Replace multiple words.

Similar to finding any word Microsoft Word has a feature to replace a specific word throughout the document. Use shortcut key Ctrl + H to find the words you want to replace and enter the word you want to replace them with.


Whatever your level of Microsoft Word proficiency, a little extra knowledge can transform our use of the word processor. Contact ETS IT Solutions today if you want to learn more about how the Microsoft Office suite. we can help you be more productive and efficient. Technology should support you, not frustrate you.

Edwin Lascano

Edwin works as a technology consultant for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). His primary goal is to educate business owners on how to use technology to boost productivity and growth in their organizations. He has more than fifteen years of experience and is committed to making technology as simple as possible for his customers. Edwin has worked on a variety of projects ranging from small enterprise wireless installations to large-scale server migrations and upgrades. He also studies digital marketing tactics and produces websites in addition to having a successful professional IT business.

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