Google Slides logo against a yellow gradient background.

Hanging indents is a text formatting style that’s often used in academic citations or bibliographies. Although it’s more commonly used in Word documents, you might occasionally need to use hanging indents in your Google Slides presentation.

Create a Hanging Indent Using Your Keyboard

There’s a pretty quick way to add a hanging indent in Google Slides using only your keyboard. First, place your cursor at the beginning of the line you want to indent.

Place your cursor at the beginning of the line you want to indent in Google Slides

Next, press Shift+Enter (Shift+Return on Mac). This will place the text on its own line, allowing you to indent that single line. If you skip this step and try to indent the second line, it will indent the entire paragraph.

After that, simply press that Tab key. The single line will be indented.

Press tab to indent the line.

Repeat this for every line of the paragraph (except the first line) to create a hanging indent.

A hanging indent in Google Slides created with only keys.


This method is simple, but it does lack that fine-tuning you might need. If you want to adjust your indention to a specific measurement, you can use some of the tools provided in Google Slides.

Create a Hanging Indent Using Google Slides’ Tools

Google Slides provides a ruler so you can get an exact measurement on your indentations. The ruler appears above the slides. If you can’t see the ruler, click “View” and then choose “Show Ruler.”

The ruler will appear above your slides.

The ruler above your slides.

Next, select the paragraph you want to add the hanging indent to. You can select text by clicking and dragging your cursor over it. Selected text is highlighted in blue.

Selected text in Google Slides.

Once selected, two small indent tools will appear in the ruler:

  1. First Line Indent – Controls the position of the first line.
  2. Left Indent – Sets the left side of the paragraph’s position.

Two small indent tools in the ruler.

First, click and drag the Left Indent icon to the position you want the indention to be.


Once you do, the entire paragraph will move. Next, click and drag the First Line Indent icon over to the position you want the first line to begin.

Your hanging indent is now set.

Creating hanging indents in Google Slides is simple enough, but you might find after working in Google Slides that you prefer using PowerPoint. If that’s the case, then you can convert your Google Slides to PowerPoint and create a hanging indent there.

RELATED: How to Create or Remove a Hanging Indent in Microsoft PowerPoint

Profile Photo for Marshall Gunnell Marshall Gunnell
Marshall is a writer with experience in the data storage industry. He worked at Synology, and most recently as CMO and technical staff writer at StorageReview. He's currently an API/Software Technical Writer based in Tokyo, Japan, runs VGKAMI and ITEnterpriser, and spends what little free time he has learning Japanese.
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