How to 'track changes' and make comments in Google Docs using the collaborative 'Suggesting' tool

Kevin Jarrett/FlickrYou can use Google Docs’ Suggesting feature to track changes and help edit others’ work.

Whether you are a writer in desperate need of an editor’s guidance, or just need a friend to look over a cover letter, the “Suggesting” feature on Google Docs might be just what you need.

“Suggesting” is similar to Microsoft Word’s “Track Changes,” but it works in real time for a more seamless process of collaboration.

All you need is a Google account with access to Google Docs, and a prospective editor or collaborator with the same.

How to ‘track changes’ on Google Docs using the ‘Suggesting’ feature

1. Open Google Docs.

2. Find a document that you have editing or commenting permission on.

3. On the top menu bar to the far right, you will see a pencil icon. Click on it.

Google1Meira Gebel/Business InsiderOn the top menu bar on Google Docs, find and click the pencil icon, then select ‘Suggesting.’.

4. In the drop-down menu, select “Suggesting.”

5. The icon will change to green when you are in “Suggesting” mode.

6. While using the Google Docs “Suggesting” feature, all edited text will appear in green and pop-ups will appear in the margins listing every suggestion you make.

7. You can accept the changes by clicking on the check mark, or reject the suggestion by clicking the “x” icon.

Google3Meira Gebel/Business InsiderYou can approve or reject any suggested change.

How to add and edit a comment on Google Docs

1. To make a comment on Google Docs while using the “Suggesting” function, highlight the text you wish to make a comment on. An icon that looks like a plus sign in a message bubble will appear to the right. Click it to leave a comment.

Google5Meira Gebel/Business InsiderThe selected text will appear in yellow once a comment is made.

2. You can also use the shortcut “Command+Option+M” or right-click and select “Comment” from the menu that appears. Once you’ve written a comment, press the blue “Comment” button and the text will be highlighted in yellow, alongside your comment in the right margin.

3. To edit your comment, click the three vertical dots on the top right. This will take you to the “More Options” menu where you can edit, delete, or link to the comment.

Google6Meira Gebel/Business InsiderThe ‘More Options’ menu can be found on the top right of the comment box.

How to reply to a comment in Google Docs

1. To reply to a comment, click the comment you wish to reply to.

2. Enter the reply in the text box and hit “Reply.” You can also get rid of the comment by clicking “Resolve.”

Google7Meira Gebel/Business InsiderClick the comment bubble and make your reply in the text box.

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