How to Work With Microsoft Word Page Numbers

Learn how to create page numbers in Microsoft Word

A picture of a small book with page numbers.
Add page numbers to break up a long document. Getty Images

If your Microsoft Word document is long (or book-length), you might want to add page numbers to help readers find their way it. You add the page numbers to either the header or footer. Headers are areas that run across the top of the document; footers run across the bottom. When you print a document, the headers and footers can be printed as well.

It’s possible to put page numbers in a Microsoft Word document no matter what version of it you’re using. Page numbers, and associated tasks like customizing headers and footers are available in Word 2003, Word 2007, Word 2010, Word 2013, Word 2016, and Word Online, part of Office 365. All of these are covered here. 

How to Add Page Numbers in Word 2003

A screen shot of the Page Number Format dialog box in Word 2003
Word 2003. Joli Ballew

You can add Microsoft page numbers in Word 2003 from the View menu. To begin, place your cursor at the first page of your document, or, where you want page numbers to begin. Then:

  1. Click the View tab and click Header And Footer.
  2. A header and footer appear on your document; place your cursor in the one you want to add page numbers to.
  3. Click the icon for Insert Page Number on the Header And Footer toolbar that appears.
  4. To make any changes, click Format Page Numbers.
  5. Make any desired changes and click OK.
  6. Close the header section by clicking Close on the Header And Footer toolbar.

How to Add Page Numbers in Word 2007 and Word 2010

A screen shot of the Page Number options in Word 2010.
Word 2010. Joli Ballew

You add page numbers in Microsoft Word 2007 and Word 2010 from the Insert tab. To get started, place your cursor at the first page of your document, or where you want page numbers to begin. Then:

  1. Click the Insert tab and click Page Number.
  2. Click Top of Page, Bottom of Page, or Page Margins to define where to place the numbers.
  3. Choose a page numbering design.
  4. Double-click anywhere in the document to hide the header and footer areas. 

How to Add Page Numbers in Microsoft Word 2013, Word 2016, and Word Online

A screen shot of the Page Number option in Word 2016,
Word 2016. Joli Ballew

You insert page numbers to documents in Microsoft Word 2013 from the Insert tab. To begin, place your cursor at the first page of your document, or where you want page numbers to begin. Then:

  1. Click the Insert tab.
  2. Click Page Number.
  3. Click Top of Page, Bottom of Page, or Page Margins to define where to place the numbers.
  4. Choose a page numbering design
  5. Double-click anywhere in the document to hide the header and footer areas.

Customize Headers and Footers

A screen shot of the Header and Footer options in Word 2016.
Footer options in Word 2016. Joli Ballew

You can also customize the headers and footers in all versions of Microsoft Word. You do that from the same area where you added page numbers.

To begin, click Header or Footer to see your options. In more recent editions of Word you can also get additional header and footer styles online, from Office.com.