How-tos

How to Have Different Headers and Footers Per Page in Google Docs


Google Docs logo on a white background

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 each 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, the document author, and the date. But not all documents need these details. You may have a document where you want a header or footer on only the first page, every other page, or one that’s unique on each page.

Insert a Header or Footer

Each of the options for displaying different headers or footers start the same way. You’ll 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 your cursor to Headers & Footers and pick “Header” or “Footer” from the submenu.

Insert a header or footer in Google Docs

Use a Header or Footer on Only the First Page

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

Check the box for Different First Page.

Header on the first page only

You’ll then see the header or footer removed from your remaining pages. This allows you to use a different header or footer for the rest of your document, keeping it different than 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 your 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 box for “Different Odd & Even” and click “Apply.”

Setting for Different Odd and Even

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 only by checking that box in the pop-up window or the header or footer section on the first page as described earlier.

Use a Different Header or Footer on Each Page

Maybe you want to use a different header or footer on every page of your document. Google Docs doesn’t currently 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 Sections Break feature, you can use a different header or footer for each one. This would require you to create a new section for every page in your document. It’s not ideal, but it is a workaround that does work if you really want unique headers and footers per page

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

Insert a section break

You’ll 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.

Unchecked Link to Previous

You can also click “Options” and pick “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 only for the header

While we cannot show you our entire document, here’s a snapshot. We have five sections, each with a different header.

Different headers per section

Simply repeat this process for each page in 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 every page of your document.

For additional help with Google Docs, take a look at how to create a table of contents.





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