7 Google Slides Features for Eye-Catching Presentations

Google Slides is an incredibly versatile presentation software that offers numerous useful features to help you create professional and visually appealing slide decks. In this article, we will explore 7 key Google Slides features that can take your presentations to the next level.

1. Apply Image Effects

Images can make or break a presentation. While high-quality images are essential, you can also enhance ordinary images with Google Slides’ built-in effects.

Here are the steps to apply image effects:

  • Select the image you want to modify.
  • Click “Format options” in the toolbar.
  • Under “Image options,” choose “Reflection” or “Shadow.”
  • Adjust the reflection transparency or shadow angle and blur as needed.

The reflection and shadow effects add polish, making your images pop on the slide.

2. Crop an Image to a Shape

Cropping images into unique or custom shapes is another excellent way to boost visual interest.

Follow these steps to crop an image to a shape in Google Slides:

  • Insert the image you want to crop.
  • Select the image and click “Crop image” in the toolbar.
  • Click “Crop to shape” and choose a shape like a circle, triangle, speech bubble, etc.
  • Adjust the crop area and drag to reposition as needed.

Cropping images to shapes gives you endless possibilities to showcase images creatively.

3. Place Text in Front of an Image

Layering text over an image is an eye-catching design trick. The high-contrast effect draws attention to important text or titles.

Here is how to place text in front of an image in Google Slides:

  • Insert an image on the slide.
  • Click “Arrange” in the toolbar.
  • Select “Bring to front” to move the image forward.
  • Add a text box and drag it on top of the image.

The clean text overlays add emphasis and visual interest effortlessly.

4. Add Animations

Subtle animations can make your presentation more dynamic and polished. They also highlight important points and transition between ideas smoothly.

Follow these steps to add animations in Google Slides:

  • Select the text or object you want to animate.
  • Click “Insert” in the menu and choose “Animation.”
  • Pick an animation like fade in, fly in, float in, etc.
  • Customize the animation duration and other settings.

Use animations judiciously to emphasize key points without overdoing it.

5. Insert Icons

Relevant icons interspersed in your presentation can act as visual cues to strengthen your message. Google Slides offer multiple icon libraries to choose from.

Here is how to add icons:

  • Place the cursor where you want the icon.
  • Select “Insert” and click the “Icons” dropdown.
  • Browse the available icons grouped into categories.
  • Choose an icon and a style color to insert it.

Strategically placing icons makes your content more visually informative and engaging.

6. Use Guides for Alignment

Proper alignment of objects boosts the presentation’s visual flow and consistency. Guides act as an alignment aid so you can easily line up titles, text, and other elements.

Here are the steps to use guides:

  • Click “View” in the menu and enable “Guides”
  • Select an object like a text box or shape.
  • Drag the object close to the guide indicator lines.
  • The object will snap into alignment with the guides.

Guides facilitate precision alignment, saving layout time.

7. Add Subtle Slide Transitions

Harsh slide transitions can feel jarring and unprofessional. Subtle transitions like fades and dissolves transition smoothly between slides.

To add transitions:

  • Select the slide you want to transition from.
  • Click “Transition” in the toolbar.
  • Choose a subtle transition effect and duration.
  • Click “Apply to all” to add the transition to all slides.

Smooth subtle transitions lend a polished flow to your presentation.


Google Slides equips you with all the tools you need to create stunning, professional presentations. Strategically applying features like animations, image effects, icons, guides and subtle transitions can take your slide deck from boring to brilliant in minutes.

Implementing even a few of these features is an easy way to produce presentation visuals that impress and inform your audience. With some practice, you’ll be able to prepare flawless and impactful presentations in Google Slides.