WordPress – Pasting Text From Word or Other Editor

Video Tutorial

Script & Screenshots

In this video I’m going to go through how to copy content from Microsoft Word or other editors into WordPress.

If you’ve ever tried to copy text from a Microsoft Word document and then paste it into a post or page, then you know that the text doesn’t always look right when you publish it to your blog. Needless to say, Word and WordPress are not very compatible.

Word is great for creating your content, but less than ideal for copying to WordPress as a bunch of extra HTML code gets inserted into the text.  The same applies when using Google Docs, OpenOffice, or other word processors.  You won’t be able to see the extra code in the visual editor, but if you switch to the text editor and know a bit of HTML, you’ll notice lots of extra code throughout your blog post that you don’t want there.

It’s best to create your page or post text on the fly within the WordPress editor, but if you like to create it offline in another editor, I’ll show you how to copy and paste without any extra code mysteriously appearing.

If you do need to paste text from another editor, first you want to select all the text from the document.

Notice in this document how I have bold, italics, highlighting, indenting, and single spacing other than in between the menu items.

I want to select all of the text so I will use the Control key plus the A key.  If you don’t want to select everything in the document, highlight only what you’d like and copy it.

I’ll right click on the text, then click on Copy.

Now I will paste it into my visual editor.

As you can see with mine, it adds a lot of extra breaks between paragraphs.

Click on the Preview Changes button to see if the formatting is all messed up.  You can also look at the text editor tab to see if you see any HTML code.  If you don’t know what HTML code looks like, it will be anything located between brackets < > .

Click on the new tab that it opens for the Preview.

You can see all spacing issues on this page.  There should not be paragraph breaks under each of the menu items under Cold Plates.  In my Word document they are single breaks.  If your formatting is bad, you have a few options.

So I’m going to go back to my dashboard and show you how you can fix the formatting.

I’m going to select all the text I just copied and pasted using the Control plus the A key.

One is to highlight all that text or only the text that the formatting looks bad.  Then click on the Eraser button.  This will delete all the formatting.  So this will delete all the bold, headings, italics, highlights, etc.

Now I’ll click on the Preview Changes button to see how the formatting looks now.

I’ll click on the tab to preview the changes.

As you can see the bold and italics is gone, but the spacing under Cold Plates still has paragraph breaks.

I’m going to delete all the text so I can show you another way to paste your text.

Now I’m going to move from the Visual editor to the Text editor.   This will remove all formatting immediately.

Now I’m going to paste to content here in the text editor.

I’ll click on the Preview Changes button again so I can see how my content looks now.

Click on the preview tab.

As you can see, the formatting looks different than the last version.  Once again it removed all the bold and italics, it also has the spacing look like it should.  So with removing the formatting from the start, the spacing copied over correctly.  I’d much rather have it this way so that I only have to add the bold and italics back in.  I find that’s easier than fixing the spacing.

Now I’m going to go back to the dashboard to show you one more way to add your content.

I’m going to delete all the text from the text editor.

And go back to the visual editor.

This time click on the clipboard button with a ‘T’ on it before pasting any text.  This is the Paste as Text button.

It will pop up a message that says:  Paste is now in plain text mode. Contents will now be pasted as plain text until you toggle this option off.  Once you’ve enabled the Plain Text option once for a post or page, subsequent clicks on the button will turn it on (evidenced by a box around the button) or off (no box around the button).

After you click on the ‘X’ to close this message, you may not see the pop up window again, but the toggle option will still work.

Here is how the Toolbar looks in “Plain Text on” mode. Notice the icon has a box around it.

Now that I’m done adding the content, I will click on the button again to turn it off.

Here is how the Toolbar looks in “Plain Text off” mode. Note that there’s no box around it.

Click on Preview Changes button again.

Now click on the preview tab to view the changes.

As you can see in this version, it is very similar to when we used the clear formatting button in the first step.  So for my text, my best option would be to paste in the text editor and add the bold and italics.  Then click on Update or Publish to save the changes.  Depending on your text, one of the other options may be better for you.

Some other notes for if you do want to copy the formatting over, is that not all formatting created in a word processor will be reproduced when pasting into WordPress editor. We’ve found that using Chrome as your browser is the best way to ensure the majority of your formatting transfers over.  Tables created in Word should still paste as tables, but borders may not transfer over. If you need a traditional table, we suggest recreating your tables in HTML.  Footnotes and other specialized formatting may paste in, but in some cases that formatting will be lost.  And for images, you will have to upload any images that were in your document to your blog before you can use them.  See the video on adding media if you need help adding images.

That’s it for this video.  I’ll see you in the next one.

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Adding Images   (11:48)
Adding a PDF as a Link   (2:35)
Linking Text to a URL   (3:15)
Pasting Text From Word or Other Editor   (7:26)
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