Publisher 2016 Quick Start

Publisher is a desktop publishing application that helps you create visually rich, professional-looking publications.

With Publisher on your PC, you can:

  • Lay out content for print or online publication in a variety of predesigned templates.

  • Create simple items like greeting cards and labels.

  • Create complex projects like yearbooks, catalogs, and professional email newsletters.

Screenshot of a newsletter created from a Publisher template.

If you don't already have Publisher, and need to install it, see Download and install or reinstall Office 365 or Office 2016 on your PC or Mac.

Download Office 365

Sign in

Whenever prompted, sign in to Publisher, Office, or Office 365 by using your Microsoft account or work or school account.

Being signed in allows you to:

  • Save or share files using OneDrive.

  • Collaborate with friends and colleagues.

For more information, see Sign in to Office or Where to sign in to Office 365.

Screenshot of the Microsoft account Sign In page

Create with a template

  1. Open Publisher.

    If you're already in Publisher, select File > New.

  2. Select or search for a template:

    • Select a FEATURED template.

    • Select BUILT-IN and select a template.

    • Search for a template using:

      • Search for online templates Start Searching button , or

      • One of the Suggested searches.

  3. Select Create.

Screenshot of templates on the Publisher Start screen.

Save your business information to reuse

Save your business information, to pre-populate fields, save time, and ensure consistency.

  1. Select Insert >Business Information

    > Edit Business Information.

  2. Select New and enter your information.

  3. Select Add Logo to add a logo or image. Browse to the logo, and select Open.

  4. For Business Information set name, type a name like Personal, School, or Company.

  5. Select Save.

Publisher Business Information

Screenshot of the Create New Business Information Set dialog box.

Add a text box

  1. Select Home > Draw Text Box.

  2. Drag the cross-shaped cursor to draw a box where you want to add text.

  3. Type the text in the text box.

    If the text doesn't fit in the text box, make the text box bigger, or link it to another text box.

Screenshot of a text box on a page of a Publisher file.

Insert a picture

You can insert a picture from your computer, or insert an online picture from Facebook, OneDrive, or the web.

  1. Select Insert > Pictures or

    Insert > Online Pictures.

  2. Find the picture you want and select it.

  3. Select Insert.

Screenshot of the Insert Pictures window for online pictures.

Save your file

When you save your file to the cloud, you can share and collaborate with others, and get to your files on your computer, tablet or phone.

  1. Select File > Save As.

  2. Select OneDrive.

    Save personal files to OneDrive - Personal, and work files to your company OneDrive.

    You can also save to another location in the list, or add a location.

Screenshot of the Save As page of the Publisher Backstage view.

Link text boxes

If you have too much text to fit in a text box, select or create another text box and link them.

  1. Select the overflow button The Publisher text box overflow button .

    The cursor changes to a pitcher text box linking pitcher, used to link text boxes. .

  2. Select the text box you want the text to flow into.

    Or click anywhere on the page to create a new text box for the overflow text.

Screenshot of a text box with overflow text ready to pour into another text box.

Swap pictures

Drag and swap pictures from the scratch area to your layout until you find the layout you like.

  1. Select a picture.

  2. Drag the picture by the mountain icon where you want it.

  3. When the pink highlight appears around the picture, release the mouse button.

Swap pictures

Crop a picture

  1. Select the picture.

  2. Select Picture Tools Format > Crop.

  3. Use the cropping handles to size the picture:

    • Drag a center handle to crop that side.

    • Hold Ctrl and drag a center handle to crop evenly on two sides.

    • Hold Ctrl+Shift and drag a corner handle to crop all four sides evenly.

  4. Click outside the picture to crop.

Screenshot of an image being cropped.

Add effects to pictures

You can add effects like shadow, reflection, glow, soft edges, bevel, and 3-D rotation to pictures.

  1. Select a picture.

  2. Select Picture Tools Format > Picture Effects.

  3. Select an effect: Shadow, Reflection, Glow, Soft Edges, Bevel, or 3-D Rotation.

  4. Select the effect you want.

Picture effect

Add effects to text

You can add shadow, reflection, glow, and bevel effects to text.

  1. Select the text you want to format.

  2. Select Text Box Tools Format > Text Effects.

  3. Select the type of effect: Shadow, Reflection, Glow, or Bevel.

  4. Select the specific effect you want.

Text effects

Add a building block

Publisher offers hundreds of building blocks to use in your publications, like headings, calendars, borders, and advertisements.

  1. Select the Insert tab.

  2. Select a building block from:

    • Page Parts

    • Calendars

    • Borders & Accents or

    • Advertisements.

See all building blocks

  • Select Show Building Block Library Dialog Box Launcher button on the ribbon .

  • Select a building block in the library, and then select Insert.

Publisher Building Blocks Screenshot of the partial Building Block Library window displaying thumbnails in the Page Parts category.
Get help with Publisher
  1. Select ? in the upper-right corner.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • Select a category and topic from the Top categories list.

    • Select Search help, type what you want help with, and then select Search Help pane Search button .

Screenshot of the Publisher 2016 Help pane displaying the results of a search for Trifold.

Publisher help and training

Publisher training

Publisher help

Photograph of a woman working on a Surface tablet computer.
Connect with an expert
Contact us
Expand your skills
Explore training

Was this information helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Thank you for your feedback! It sounds like it might be helpful to connect you to one of our Office support agents.