Plain presentations have their place in serious business settings, but in any other case, holding your audience's attention is key. In this guide, we'll cover how to add music, video, or sound to your Google Slides to spice them up a little.
Prerequisites for adding video or audio to Google Slides
First, though, you should ensure that you have an active Google account before you start, as well as enough Google Drive storage to store both the presentation and your videos/audio. The amount of storage you need will of course depend on how long your audio and videos are and what quality they're saved at.
If you want to store a particularly large video, you may have to sign up for a Google One subscription. The basic tier nets you 100GB of storage for about $2/month, which is affordable.
With that said, let's get into the meat of the tutorial:
How to Add Audio / Music to Google Slides
It's quite easy to insert audio into Google Slides these days thanks to the “Insert Audio” option that Google added a few years back. You just have to make sure to upload the file you want to use to your Google Drive first:
- Open Google Drive
You can access Google Drive via its webpage or by clicking the Google Drive tray icon in your taskbar and then pressing the drive button in the pop-up.
- Click the “My Drive” heading and press “Upload files”
- Browse to your music or audio and press “Open”
- Go to the Google Slides webpage and press “Go to Slides”
You can save some Googling by clicking this direct link to the Slides webpage.
- Click your presentation to open it
- Navigate to the slide you want to add audio to and press “Insert > Audio” in the toolbar
- Click your Google Slides audio or music from in the Drive tab and press “Select”
- Click “Continue editing” if you get a warning
- An audio player will appear on your slide
- Press the Google Slides music player and press “Format > Format options” in the toolbar
- Choose whether you want your music to start automatically or activate on click under the “Start playing” heading
- Adjust the “Volume when presenting” slider to suit your preferences
Make sure you test this on the setup you'll be presenting from before you start your presentation if possible. Your home speakers may be much quieter than a conference room setup.
- Tick “Hide icon when presenting”
- Choose whether you want the audio to loop
- Tick or untick “Stop on slide change”
If you're wondering how to make music play through the entire Google Slides presentation, the answer is to untick this option. When you combine it with the loop option, it can add some nice background music to Google Slides.
How to Add a Video to Google Slides
You can add music to your presentation through a YouTube or Drive video. In fact, this used to be the only way to do so. However, you can also use the following as a guide on how to embed a video in Google Slides more generally:
- Select your slide and press “Insert > Video” in the toolbar
- Copy the link to your YouTube video
- Open the “By URL” option in the Insert Video pop-up, paste the link, and press “Select”
- OR: Open the search tab and enter the title of the song you'd like to embed
- Select the YouTube video from the list and press “Select”
- OR: Add video to Google Slides via the Google Drive tab
- Click on the video in your Google Drive storage and press “Select”
- Google Slides will insert the video into your slide
- Click the video and press “Format > Format options”
- Choose whether to play the video on click, manually or automatically
- Select where you want the video to start and end
- Tick or untick the “Mute audio” option
- Adjust, the size, rotation, positioning, and drop shadow to your liking
Before we had the insert audio and video features, the only way to add music to Google Slides was via a sharable Google Drive link. While the new functionality makes this unnecessary in most circumstances, there are times when you might want to use this method instead. Here's how you can:
- Upload your audio or video file to Google Drive
To do so you can click the “My Drive” heading and then press “Upload files”.
- Open your slide and press “Insert > Text box”
- Right-click your text box
- Click “Link” in the context menu
- Right-click the file in your Google Drive and press “Get link”
- Press “Copy link” in the pop-up
- Paste the link into your textbox in Google Slides
You can then press the text box link during your presentation to open a new tab with your music, audio, or video.
Extra: How to Add Audio to PowerPoint
If you prefer Microsoft PowerPoint over Google's slightly finicky Slides, don't worry. We also have a guide on how to add audio to PowerPoint. You won't have to jump through hoops with Google Drives, so you may find it easier.
Extra: How to Embed a Video in PowerPoint
Just like Google Slides, PowerPoint lets you embed a YouTube video directly in your slide. The process is a little less intuitive, though, so make sure to follow our dedicated guide.
Extra: How to Insert an Animated GIF in PowerPoint
Meanwhile, if you only want a short clip in your presentation, you can follow our guide on how to insert an animated GIF in PowerPoint.