How to embed a Word document into an Excel 2016 / 365 / 2019 workbook?

Last update: September 2019

Applies to: Excel 2019, 2016, 2013; Office 365; Windows 10, 7 and macOS.

Dorothy wanted to learn how to insert objects into her Excel spreadsheets:

I believe i have seen a Microsoft Excel worksheet that had a Word document embedded in it. Can you explain how can i insert Word files into Excel? I am using Excel 365.

Thanks for the question. One of the key benefits of an integrated productivity suite, such as Office, is the ability to insert file objects , in this case Word document files, into other Microsoft Office applications, namely Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint.

So without further ado, here’s a quick tutorial that is aimed at explaining how you can embed an object (being a document, presentation, diagram, notebook)  into Excel. We’ll demonstrate the process by adding a Word file into a workbook.

Inserting Word documents into Excel spreadsheets

  1. First off, open Microsoft Excel.
  2. Then hit File, then navigate to the Open tab, search and open for your Workbook. (Tip – consider pinning files for easier access in the future).
  3. Navigate to the relevant worksheet in your Excel file.
  4. From the Ribbon, hit Insert.
  5. In the right hand side of the Ribbon, hit Object (located in the Text group of the Insert tab).
  6. At this point, you can either add a new Word file to your worksheet or an existing one. Select Create a new file and pick Microsoft Word as the object type from the drop down list to add a brand new document or select Create from file to add an existing file  to the spreadsheet.
  7. Now, go ahead and adjust the look and feel of your embedded object so it will fit your spreadsheet layout.
  8. Next, hit OK.
  9. And obviously, don’t forget to save your Excel spreadsheet on your computer or OneDrive.

Adding Word attachments into Excel

In a similar fashion you are able to insert your Word doc as an attachment to the worksheet.

Follow steps 1-6 above, but be sure of highlighting the Display as Icon and Link to File check-boxes before moving to step 8. Your document will displayed as an icon on your spreadsheet, which you can double click to open it.

Linking to a file from Word and Excel

As shown above, by using the Link to File feature, you can easily link to any embedded file or icon in your spreadsheet or document.


  1. As shown above, embedded files can also be displayed as links or icons in your spreadsheet.
  2. The process we just outlined applies for adding any type of files (including if needed, image, graphs, equation objects and so forth) into an Excel spreadsheet.

Embedding Word docs into Excel on macOS

  1. Open Excel for macOS.
  2. Navigate and open your spreadsheet.
  3. Go to the Insert tab.
  4. Now, go ahead and hit Select Object.
  5. The Insert Object form will appear:


  1. Select Microsoft Word document to insert a brand new file, or hit the From file button to add an existing doc to your worksheet.
  2. Last hit OK, and don’t forget to save your file.



  1. If you are using Microsoft Office on MAC, you’ll be able to embed Word docs, but not PowerPoint presentations nor Visio diagrams.

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