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How to have different headers and footers per page in Google Docs


By adding a header or footer to your document, you can include information without distracting from the content. But you may not want the same one on every page. Here’s how to use different headers and footers in Google Docs.

Headers and footers are common locations for things like your company name or logo, page numbers, document author, and date. But not all documents need these details. You may have a document where you want a header or footer only on the first page, every other page, or one that is unique to each page.

Insert a header or footer

Each of the options to display different headers or footers starts the same way. You will need to insert the header or footer before you can change its options.

RELATED: How to Add Headers and Footers in Google Docs

With your document open, select Insert from the menu. Move the cursor to Headers and Footers and select “Header” or “Footer” from the submenu.

Insert a header or footer in Google Docs

Use a header or footer only on the first page

Once you follow the steps above to insert your header or footer, go to the first page of your document and place your cursor in the header or footer area. You can do this by selecting the text or by double-clicking inside that place.

Check the box for Different First Page.

Header only on the first page

You will then see that the header or footer has been removed from the remaining pages. This allows you to use a different header or footer for the rest of your document, keeping it different from the first page.

Use different headers or footers on odd and even pages

Another built-in option is to use different headers and footers on odd and even pages. Place the cursor in the header or footer area as described above.

RELATED: How to Add Page Numbers to Google Docs

Click “Options” and select “Header Format” or “Footer Format.”

Options, header format

In the pop-up window, check the “Different even and odd” box and click “Apply”.

Configuration for different even and odd

You can then insert the header or footer for an odd and even page and it will apply to the remaining odd and even pages.

Different header on odd and even pages

Optionally, you can still use a different header on the first page just by checking that box in the popup or the header or footer section on the first page as described above.

Use a different header or footer on each page

You may want to use a different header or footer on each page of your document. Currently, Google Docs doesn’t offer a built-in feature to do this, but there is a way to do it using Sections.

RELATED: How to add, show and remove page and section breaks in Google Docs

By using the section break feature, you can use a different header or footer for each. This will require you to create a new section for each page of your document. It’s not ideal, but it’s a workaround that works if you really want unique headers and footers per page.

To insert a section break, place the cursor in the document where you want it. Go to the Insert menu, scroll down to Break, and choose “Section Break (Next Page)” from the menu.

Insert a section break

You will see a blue dotted line indicating the new section. Here, we are inserting a fifth section after Section 4.

section indicator

On the first page of the new section (our Section 5), double-click inside the header or footer area. Uncheck the box for Link to Previous. The current header or footer text disappears and you can then enter the new text.

Unmarked link to above

You can also click “Options” and select “Header Format” or “Footer Format”. In the pop-up window, confirm that only the current section is selected in the Apply To box at the top.

This section for header only

While we can’t show you our full document, here’s a snapshot. We have five sections, each with a different heading.

Different headers per section

Simply repeat this process for each page of your document. Again, this isn’t the perfect situation if you already use sections for a different purpose or prefer not to use them at all, but it does give you a way to have different headers or footers on each page of your document.

For additional help with Google Docs, see how to create a table of contents.

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