Yesterday the Google Drive team announced one of the biggest updates to Docs and Sheets that we’ve seen in a long time. The new Add-ons feature for Docs and Sheets makes it really easy to bring some advanced functionality, or just some missing features, to your most important Drive files.

Ultimate Guide to Google Apps

With this new Add-ons feature comes a brand new marketplace with dozens of options to choose from. We suggest playing around some of them to see which ones fit your specific needs, but there are a few that we really like already. Check them out below, or you can learn how to add these tools to your Docs and Sheets in this video.

1. Creating a mail-merge has never been easier than with Merge by MailChimp

Before Add-ons were introduced, creating a mail-merge required some knowledge of apps script as well as a lot of patience when putting together all the materials. With Merge by MailChimp the process has been simplified significantly with a friendly user-interface. If you’re not familiar with mail-merges, they allow you to send an email to a large group of people by pulling an email template from a Google Doc, contact information from a Spreadsheet and sending it via Gmail.

2. Require (or receive) approval for changes in Docs with Letter Feed Workflows

Collaboration is already one of the most powerful tools in Google Docs, but asking for (or receiving) approval for changes can really only be addressed with a workaround by using comments. Many people have requested genuine a genuine workflow for Docs, and Workflows from Letter Feed aims to solve that problem. This Add-on makes receiving approval for changes much simpler in a professional workflow, which is great to see.

3. Don’t forget to cite your sources with the Bibliography Creator from EasyBib

Students (and teachers, for that matter) finally have a much easier way to cite their sources directly inside of Google Docs with the Bibliography Creator from EasyBib. EasyBib has always been a great tool for creating a bibliography via their website, but this brand-new Add-on means you don’t even have to leave your Doc when finishing up a paper!

4. Insert data from Sheets directly into a Doc with Charts

Charts for Docs and Sheets

A lot of people have issues when making their data in a Google Spreadsheet work together with a Google Doc. Charts makes it easy to add data from a Sheet into a Doc in the form of a chart.

5. Easy printing of labels and name tags with Avery Label Merge

Another great Add-on for making Sheets and Docs work together is Avery’s Label Merge, which makes formatting data in Sheets into labels and name tags really easy. If you already have your data consolidated in a Sheet, it can be really time consuming to copy and paste it when creating labels or name tags. Avery Label Merge takes the busy work out of your hands, saving your tons of time.

6. Join a conference call with all collaborators in a Doc with UberConference

UberConference for Google Docs

UberConference was already one of our favorite collaboration tools because it works really well with Google Apps and it makes getting in touch with people so much easier. Now you can take collaboration in Google Docs even further by creating a conference call with all your collaborators…inside a Google Doc!

7. Brand new version of Doctopus for EDUs should make teachers really happy

The Doctopus Apps Script was one of the most popular tools for teachers because it made assigning projects much easier. The new Add-ons section should allow even more educators to get on board because Doctopus is now so much more easy to use. With Doctopus you can create, assign and track progress of your students projects while never leaving Google Drive!


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  11. Tami

    For some reason I am no longer able to directly print my Google Drawings or Google Sheets. I have to save them in another format and then print. This occurs on both my school Mac (OS Yosimite) and on my home PC (Windows 8). Any idea what has changed?

    I look forward to your newsletters! They really help me stay current.

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