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If you find yourself creating the same outline of a document over and over again, you can save yourself an immense amount of time with a template. Here’s how to create custom-made templates in Google Docs.

Although Google Docs does offer a wide range of templates to choose from for free accounts, they don’t cater to everyone’s needs. To create a custom template you can reuse multiple times, you’ll have to use this little workaround to generate them.

Fire up your browser, head to your Google Docs homepage, and open a blank document, previously made document, or one of Google’s pre-made templates.

Create a new document that will serve as the bones for your template file.

Now that you’ve got the bones to your document set for your template, rename the file to something that has the word “Template” in it. Click the filename, rename it to include “Template,” and then press the “Enter” key when you finish.

Rename the file to include the word "Template" to differentiate it from other files in your Drive.

Next, click on the folder icon next to the filename and click the “New Folder” icon to create a new folder for Google Docs templates.

Move the template to a folder for your Google Docs templates. If one doesn't exist, create one.

Give the new folder a name and click the checkmark to create it.

Name the folder and click the checkmark.

After you create the folder, click “Move Here” to save the template into your Google Docs template folder.

Click "Move here" to move the file into this folder.

This folder can now be the new home for any and all templates you create in the future. This is also a great way to keep everything in your Google Drive neatly organized and easy to find for all members of your team.

RELATED: How to Organize Your Google Drive

When you want to make a copy of your template, you can access them directly from Google Drive. Head on over to Drive, look for the folder you just made for templates, and double-click on it.

Head to Google Drive and open the folder you just created.

Because this is a template file that you’ll be using multiple times, you should make a copy of the file before entering any information into the file. Right-click on the template and select “Make a Copy” to duplicate the template file.

Right-click the template, and then click "Make a copy."

The copy of the template saves into the current folder with the prefix “Copy Of.” From here, you can double-click on the copy to open it, rename it, or move it to another folder altogether.

Double-click the file to open it.

If you open the document or if someone sends you a template file, click File > Make a Copy to duplicate the template to your Drive.

If you were sent the file, or it's already open, click File > Make a copy.

Name the file, choose a location for it in your Drive, and then click “OK” to save the document template.

Name the file, choose a folder for it, and then click "OK."

That’s all there is to it. If you want to share your template with others, you can create a “Make a Copy” link and send it in an email or share the file directly with a shareable link.

RELATED: How to Share "Make a Copy" Links to Your Google Files

If you have a paid G Suite account, you’re able to save custom templates in your account’s custom template gallery for all of your team members in your organization to use. With the method used above, free accounts can take advantage of sharing custom templates without any additional expenses.

Brady Gavin Brady Gavin
Brady Gavin has been immersed in technology for 15 years and has written over 150 detailed tutorials and explainers. He's covered everything from Windows 10 registry hacks to Chrome browser tips. Brady has a diploma in Computer Science from Camosun College in Victoria, BC.  
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