How to insert a hyperlink in MS Word

Hyperlinks provide an easy way of navigating to different sources or sections in your document. With this feature, you can redirect your readers to an outside source or a certain place within your file. This feature helps you format your document into a more organized and easy-to-navigate form.

Now, there are three ways to add a hyperlink in MS Word.

3 Ways to Add a Hyperlink in MS Word

  • Using the Link command from the Insert tab
  • Using the Keyboard shortcut
  • Using the Right-click + Link command

Each of these methods can be applied in different situations. For instance, you might find it easier to use the keyboard shortcut if you have a functional keyboard. However, the other two methods are always available if you find it more comfortable to use your mouse.

Adding a hyperlink requires the Insert Hyperlink Dialog Box – a window where you can set the type of hyperlink and the fields that it requires. As you go along with this article, you will be guided on how to open and use it.

Let’s get started!


Why Should You Add Hyperlinks in MS Word?

Adding hyperlinks to documents has many advantages. One instance is that it provides an easy way for your readers to access other information that is relevant to your main content. It can also be used to format your document into a more structured form. This allows your readers to navigate different areas of your document with ease. An example of this is the application of hyperlinks to the Table of Contents. Your readers can easily browse the specific topic or section they intend to read with just a simple click.

Regardless of why you’re going to add a hyperlink, it’s first important to understand what a hyperlink is. It is a clickable word in your document that redirects the readers to another section of your document, or to an outside source.

Here are some good rules of thumb that you can follow for figuring out when to add hyperlinks:

  • If you intend to show your readers your sources of information such as website URLs or external files.
  • You are writing or preparing a document intended for digital purposes.
  • You are following a standard format that requires you to add hyperlinks.
  • You want to redirect your readers to another area around the document or on the internet.

Now that you have a good understanding about the use of hyperlinks, it is time to learn the different ways of adding one into your document.

Let’s dive right in.


Method 1: Using the Link Command from the Insert Tab

This method requires the use of the Insert tab, which you can find at the Ribbon of the MS Word interface. The Ribbon is also known as the tool bar, the horizontal tab full of options in MS Word. The Insert tab contains the command you need to access the Hyperlink dialog box.

Use this method if you are more comfortable using your mouse than pressing hotkeys. Follow the steps thoroughly so that you can successfully add a hyperlink.

Here are the steps on how you can do it.

Step 1: Locate and open your MS Word document.

Let’s start by opening up the document that you need to add hyperlinks into.  You can open it by simply double-clicking or by right-clicking the file and selecting the Open command. By default, the document should be opened by the MS Word application. You can follow along with this tutorial by using a new document. Alternatively, feel free to use your own personal files. Any changes made in this article are not major and should be easy to revert.

Step 2: Highlight the word or phrase in your document that you want to add the hyperlink to.

Click and drag your mouse cursor over the words that you will include and release your mouse button. You can also use your keyboard to highlight words. You can do so by holding down the Shift key and pressing on the right or left arrow key until all the intended words have been highlighted.

Step 3: Locate and click the Insert tab on your interface.

Now that you’ve opened your document from your MS Word interface, locate the Insert tab. You will find this situated on the Menu Bar at the top-left corner of your screen.

  1. Insert tab

Step 4: Click the Link command.

With the Insert tab already active, click on the Link command. You’ll find this near the Links group. This will open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box.

Step 5: From the list of hyperlinks, choose the hyperlink you wish to add.

From the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, click on the type of hyperlink you want to add from the list of hyperlinks. If you are unsure of which to choose, you can refer to the next step where we’ll go over the different types of hyperlinks.

Hyperlink Types

There are different types of hyperlinks that you can use depending on how you redirect your readers. You can either link to an existing file or web page, a certain place within the document, an email address, or link to a new document.

  1. Existing File or Web Page

This type of hyperlink is best used when you want to redirect your readers to a website or another file. A practical application of this feature is when you want to supplement an idea with further details found online or in another source.

  1. Place in this Document

Use this hyperlink if you want to reference and jump to a specific place in the same document. This is best used when you are working on a long document that includes many chapters that are formatted into headers and sections.

  1. Create a New Document

If you need your readers to create a new document upon reading and reaching a specific topic in your document, you can use this type of hyperlink.

  1. Email Address

This type of hyperlink redirects you to an email client program. The program will start with a new message using the email address and subject of the message you will provide.

Step 6: Fill in the required fields.

Upon selecting the type of hyperlink, you need to fill in the required fields. The fields depend on the type selected. Consider the following:

  1. Existing File or Web Page 

If you are to link an Existing File or Web Page, fill in the Address and Text to display fields.

2. Place in this Document

If you are to link a certain place within the document, fill in the Text to display field. Select from the list of places within the document where you want the hyperlink to direct to.

3. Create New Document

If you use this option, fill in the Text to display, Name of new document fields, and browse for the directory where the new document will be created. Set if the new document will be immediately opened or not by selecting the appropriate option.

4. E-mail Address

If you are to link an email address, fill in the Text to display, E-mail address, and Subject fields.

Step 7: Finalize and apply your hyperlink.

Upon configuring your option, review your inputs and click the OK button in the dialog box. The selected word or group of words will then be underlined, and its font will turn to blue, signifying that you have added a hyperlink.


Method 2: Using the Keyboard Shortcut

The easiest way to add a hyperlink is using this method. If you find it more comfortable to use your keyboard, you can easily add a hyperlink by following the simple steps provided in this method. Here are the steps on how you can do it.

Let’s dive right in!

Step 1: Open the Document That You Need to Format.

Like the first method, you will need to open the document that you need to format. You can do it by locating the document and simply double-click it or right-click and select the Open command. This will open your document in the MS Word application.

Step 2: Determine and highlight the words that will serve as a link.

With your document already open, highlight the words that you want to serve as the link. Simply click and drag your mouse cursor over the section that you want to include. You can also highlight by holding down the Shift key and pressing the arrow keys on your keyboard.

Step 3: Display the Hyperlink dialog box by pressing the shortcut keys.

Unlike the first method, you do not need to perform the tedious process of locating and clicking the Link command from the Insert tab. Instead, you can immediately display the Insert Hyperlink dialog box by simply pressing Ctrl + K on your keyboard.

Step 4: From the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, choose the hyperlink you wish to add.

Once the Insert Hyperlink dialog box is opened, you can now select the type of hyperlink you wish to add. For this step, refer to the topic types of hyperlinks on the first method to guide you on your selection.

Step 5: Complete the required fields.

Upon deciding and selecting the type of hyperlink, you can now complete the required fields. For this step, you may want to refer to the sixth step of the first method for the details of each field, but here is a quick rundown:

  1. Existing File or Web Page. You can use this option to set up a link to a website or other source. 
  2. Place in this Document. Use this option if you only want your readers to navigate to the different sections of your document.
  3. Create New Document. If there is a need for your readers to create a new document upon reaching a specific topic or word, you can use this option.
  4. E-mail Address. Setting this up means that you require your readers to send an email to the person whom the link is referring to.

Step 6: Finish applying your hyperlink by clicking the appropriate button.

Validate your inputs and finish applying your hyperlink by clicking on the OK button in the dialog box. Notice that the previously selected word or group of words’ font turned to blue and an underline emphasis is applied. This means that you have successfully added a hyperlink to your document!


Method 3: Using the Right-click + Link command

This is another method that might come in handy for some situations. You can easily open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box by displaying the Right-click context menu.

Here’s how you can do that!

Step 1: Locate and open the document that needs formatting.

Browse for the document that you need to format and simply double-click it or right-click and select the open command. The document will then be opened in MS Word application.

Step 2: Highlight the word or group of words in your document which you want to serve as a link.

Like in the previous methods, you also need to determine and highlight the words that you want to serve as the link in this step. Do it by clicking and dragging your mouse cursor over words that you want to include. Alternatively, you can hold down the Shift key and press the arrow keys on your keyboard to highlight the words.

Step 3: Display the Right-click context menu and click the Insert Hyperlink dialog box.

With the word or group of words already highlighted, right-click over the selection. This will open the right-click context menu. From here, select the Link command to open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box.

Step 4: Select the hyperlink you wish to add.

Click your desired type of hyperlink from the Insert Hyperlink dialog box. If you are unsure on what to select, refer to the types of hyperlinks.

Step 5: Fill in the details of the hyperlink.

This is the part where you will be configuring the details of the hyperlink you wish to add. The fields depend on the type selected. You may also want to refer to the sixth step of the first method, but here is a quick overview:

  1. Existing File or Web Page. Use this option to configure the details of the website or other source that you will link.
  2. Place in this Document. Set up the navigation to different sections of your document using this option.
  3. Create New Document. You can let your readers create a new document by setting the required fields of this option.
  4. E-mail Address. Let your readers easily create an email message to a specific person by using this option.

Step 6: Apply your hyperlink by clicking the OK button.

Now that you have accomplished the previous steps, review the details of your hyperlink and click the OK button in the dialog box. The previously selected words will then be underlined and the font will change to blue.


Conclusion

Maximizing the use of hyperlinks in your documents greatly improves their readability. It lessens the possibility of confusion not just for you as the author, but also among your readers. Aside from the content, readers tend to appreciate a document if it is structured and formatted well.

In this article, you were taught about the importance of using hyperlinks in documents and the steps needed to apply them. There are three methods that were discussed, each of them having different techniques that you can apply. You can either use the Link command from the Insert tab, use the Keyboard shortcut, or the Right-click + Link command. Although each method is best used in certain situations, it might turn out to be useful later on if you learn all these methods. 

We hope you found this article helpful!

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