Linking To Document Locations With A Cross-Reference

When you want to help your readers easily navigate to specific details in your document, Microsoft Word provides a valuable tool known as the Cross-Reference feature.

Microsoft Word Tip: Linking To Document Locations With A Cross-Reference

Key Points:

  • Use this feature when linking to document locations.
  • Did you create your cross-references first?
  • Highlighting existing content is not needed.
  • Microsoft Word considers your reference a field.

When you want to help your readers easily navigate to specific details in your document, Microsoft Word provides a valuable tool known as the Cross-Reference feature. Linking to document locations makes it easier to find your related content.

A few of the features of Cross-Reference will work with endnotes, figures, footnotes, tables, and numbered items. In today’s video, Dawn provides a fantastic visual example of how quick and easy it is to link to document locations.

YouTube video

Before Linking, You Need To Create Your Cross-References

Before you can begin linking to document locations, it would be best if you first created the cross-references in the Insert>Links>Cross-Reference section.

Those references can be a chart, page number, heading, etc. Once you’re ready to insert the cross-reference, the dialog box will show what references you’ve created that are available to link to in your document.

How To Insert The Cross-Reference

To insert your cross-reference, move your cursor to the location of your Word document where you will insert your reference. Quick note: You do not need to select or highlight any existing text that becomes your link.

At the top of the ribbon, tap on your Insert tab. Across the top, you will see the Links section. Now, click on “Cross-Reference.”

When your Cross-Reference window opens, select the Reference Type you want from the drop-down menu. Depending on your reference types, they might be a bookmark, equation, figure, numbered item, graph, etc.

Once you’ve chosen your Reference Type, those items will appear in your document’s “For Which Caption:” window. If the box is empty, the Reference Type you want is not within your content.

Now it’s time to show how you want your link to appear. You’ll see different options, e.g., entire caption, only caption text, page number, etc.

Check the box for Insert as Hyperlink. Then, click “Insert” to add the cross-reference. If successful, when you click the link in your document, it should immediately take you to the reference.

A Word About Fields

When you insert a cross-reference into your document, Microsoft Word considers that reference a “Field.” A field represents a set of data or information that automatically instructs the program to insert something, e.g., graphics, table, text, etc., into your page.

For example, if you update a table stored somewhere else and have it referenced in the field, the updated table gets selected automatically. That means you will not need to re-insert the table.

K2 Technologies Can Help You With A Cross-Reference

Linking to document locations with the cross-reference feature makes referencing tasks quick and easy. Also, with this feature, your fields will automatically update if you change a reference at a later date.

When you need an IT company that provides security and support for Microsoft 365 products, K2 Technologies can assist. Contact us or call (307) 200-7567 to schedule a consultation.