How to convert .docx files to Google Docs

By September 28, 2014Blog

If you are making the switch from Microsoft Office to Google Drive, you’ll eventually have to convert .docx files to Google Docs. Or, you may have a situation in which someone emails you a .docx attachment and you need to import it into Google Docs to edit it.

Fortunately, it’s not hard to do. The quick video at the bottom of this post shows how to import and edit a .doc or .docx file, or you can follow these instructions:

  1. In Google Drive’s main screen, click the red up arrow symbol next to the Create button. New button and select File upload.
  2. Choose the .doc/.docx file that you want to import. It will show up in your Google Drive list with a Word symbol next to it (a blue “W”).
  3. Open it by clicking the name of the file. It will be displayed in read-only mode, perhaps with altered formatting, owing to inconsistencies between Word and Docs. No editing is possible.
  4. To perform editing, choose File>Open With>Google Docs
  5. If you want to bring the document back into Word later, you can re-export the document as a .docx file (but not .doc).
  6. If the exported file is reopened in Word, the formatting you applied in Google Docs may look different.

A little additional explanation is needed for this last point. While Google Drive makes it very easy to import all kinds of MS Office files, compatibility may be limited. This is especially true of .doc or .docx files that were heavily formatted in Microsoft Word. If the formatting is not supported in Docs, it will be stripped out.

Here’s the video that shows how to convert .docx to Google Docs:

4 Comments

  • Ian,

    Thank you so much for these very useful videos and steps to converting documents. I just obtained an Asus Chromebook and have been trying to find ways to work on my writing without having to drag my huge laptop around.

    An appreciative author,

    Renee

    • Ian Lamont says:

      Renee: Glad the Google Docs/Drive conversion instructions were useful. If you’re interested in receiving more tips, I often highlight videos and blog posts like this in IN 30 MINUTES monthly newsletter.

      Good luck,

      Ian

  • Igor Kusin says:

    For starters in my Google drive there is no red button “Create”. In its place is a red button “New” with no arrow by its side.
    Now what?

    • Ian Lamont says:

      Hello Igor: The Google Drive interface changed slightly. Click the “New” button and choose the “Upload file” option. Then follow the rest of the steps as described above.

      Good luck,

      Ian