Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Nudging a Graphic.

Nudging a Graphic

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated January 17, 2023)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


You already know that you can insert graphics within a Word document, and that you can position those graphics using the mouse. Sometimes using the mouse doesn't give the greatest amount of control over the placement of an object. For this reason, you may want to only use the mouse to handle the "rough placement" of a graphic. You can then nudge the graphic into its final location.

To nudge a graphic, simply make sure it is selected, and then use the arrow keys. Pressing an arrow key moves the graphic in the direction indicated. If you want even finer control, hold down the Ctrl key as you press an arrow key. The result is a nudge of a single pixel in the placement of the object. (Thus, if you want to nudge a graphic one pixel to the right, simply hold down the Ctrl key as you press the Right Arrow key.)

If this tip doesn't seem to work on your graphics, there is a good chance that it is because of the way you have wrapping defined for the graphic. If the graphic is inline, you cannot nudge the graphic. Instead, it has to be configured so that text wraps around the graphic, in some way.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5907) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Nudging a Graphic.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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