Create a Table Within a Table in Word and Google Docs

816908 Create a Table Within a Table in Word and Google Docs

Creating a table within a table, also known as nesting tables, can be a handy tool when you’re dealing with complex data sets or trying to organize information in a more structured manner. This guide will walk you through the process of creating nested tables in both Microsoft Word and Google Docs.

Creating a Nested Table in Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word allows you to place one table within another, which can be useful for complex document layouts[9]. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Open a Word document and click on the location where you want to place the table.
  2. Go to the “Insert” tab and click “Table”. When the submenu opens, click and drag the mouse to select the number of rows and columns you need for your outer table[5].
  3. Once the outer table is created, click inside any cell in the larger table. Again, use the “Insert” tab to create a table. This will be your inner table[5].
  4. You can adjust the borders of the secondary table to create more separation between the cell and table borders[9].

Creating a Nested Table in Google Docs

Google Docs also allows you to create nested tables. Here are the steps to do it:

  1. Select the cell in your primary table where you want to display the secondary table.
  2. Click on the “Insert” option in the top menu bar.
  3. Select the “Table” option.
  4. Choose the number of rows and columns for your secondary table[2].
  5. You can also change the color, shade, border, etc. of your table for better visualization[2].

Formatting Nested Tables

After creating your nested tables, you can format them to improve their appearance and readability. In Google Docs, you can format borders and shading to give your table a polished, professional look[11]. In Word, you can add borders to all or parts of cells, add shading in different colors, merge and split cells, and even freeze the size of some or all of the cells in a table[13].


Creating a table within a table can be a powerful tool for organizing and presenting complex information. Whether you’re using Microsoft Word or Google Docs, the process is straightforward and can greatly enhance the readability of your documents. So, the next time you’re faced with a complex data set or need to present information in a structured manner, consider using nested tables.