June 13, 2024

A Step-By-Step Guide to Including Page Numbers in Microsoft Word

4 min read
how to include page number in word


Page numbers play a crucial role in organizing and navigating lengthy documents, such as research papers, reports, and manuscripts. Including page numbers in your Microsoft Word document enhances its professionalism and readability. Whether you’re a student, professional, or avid writer, this comprehensive guide will walk you through the process of adding page numbers in Word, ensuring your document’s cohesion and ease of reference.

Accessing the Header/Footer Section 

To insert page numbers in Word, you’ll need to access the Header/Footer section. First, open the document you wish to edit and navigate to the “Insert” tab in the menu bar. Locate and click on the “Header” or “Footer” option, depending on where you prefer to place the page numbers. This action will activate the Header/Footer editing mode.

Choosing the Page Number Style 

 Once you’re in the Header/Footer editing mode, you’ll be presented with various page number styles to choose from. Click on the “Page Number” button, which will display a drop-down menu containing multiple options. You can select from traditional numbering formats like Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3), Roman numerals (i, ii, iii), or even alphabets (A, B, C) for your page numbers.

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Inserting Page Numbers

After selecting the desired page number style, choose the placement location of your page numbers, such as at the top, bottom, left, or right of the page. Click on the preferred location, and Word will automatically insert the page number into the header or footer section. You can view the page number as a placeholder on your document.

Customizing Page Numbers 

Word offers various customization options to modify the appearance and formatting of your page numbers. To make changes, double-click on the header or footer section where the page number is located. This action will activate the Header/Footer editing mode again. Now, you can apply formatting options like font style, size, color, alignment, and add additional text or symbols alongside the page number.

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Formatting Different Sections

 In complex documents with multiple sections, such as a research paper with separate cover pages and chapters, you might require different page number formats. Word provides the “Format Page Numbers” option under the “Page Number” dropdown menu. This feature allows you to customize the numbering style, starting page number, and even the section to which the format applies, enabling you to cater to specific requirements.

Removing Page Numbers

 If you need to remove page numbers from your document, simply navigate to the Header/Footer editing mode by double-clicking on the header or footer section. Then, select and delete the page number placeholder. You can also disable page numbers temporarily by navigating to the “Page Number” dropdown menu and selecting the “Remove Page Numbers” option.


How do I fix page numbering problems in word?

To reset page numbers, go to Insert > Page Number > Remove Page Numbers. Do this for each section. To adjust page numbering, go to Insert > Page Number > Format Page Numbers. Make sure Start at is set to 1.

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Why is page number disabled in Word?

Also, since page numbers are fields, by default, they will be shaded when you select them. You can turn this setting off (for all fields) as follows: Click the Office button, and then click Word Options. In the Advanced category, change “Field coding” to “Never,” and click OK.

Why do page numbers not show on every page?

You are probably using two Page Styles, probably Left Page and Right Page. You need to enable the Header (and/or Footer) on each master style, then /Insert /Field /Page Numbers on one example on each page style.


 Including page numbers in your Word document is a simple and essential aspect of maintaining professionalism and improving readability. By following the step-by-step guide outlined above, you can effortlessly insert, customize, and format page numbers according to your document’s specific needs. Enhance the structure and accessibility of your documents with page numbers, making them easier to navigate for readers and saving you time in referencing and citation tasks.

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