How to Apply a Default Layout to a Slide in Google Slides

Google Slides makes it easy to create professional presentations quickly. One way it does this is by providing default slide layouts that you can apply to your slides with just a few clicks.

What is a Slide Layout?

A slide layout controls the placement of content placeholders on your slide. Content placeholders include things like:

  • Title
  • Subtitle
  • Bulleted lists
  • Images
  • Charts/graphs
  • Videos
  • Tables
  • Text boxes

When you apply a layout, it will add these placeholders to your slide so you know exactly where to put each type of content.

Layouts help you organize information cleanly and effectively. They also ensure visual consistency across your presentation.

Why Use the Default Layouts?

Google Slides comes with 11 preset slide layouts to choose from. These default layouts were designed by professionals to look good and communicate information clearly.

Some key benefits of using the built-in layouts include:

  • Save time – No need to position placeholders manually
  • Look professional – Layouts follow best practices for slide design
  • Easy to update – Simply replace placeholder contents
  • Visually consistent – Maintains same look and feel throughout deck

The default layouts have the right balance of text, images, and white space for a polished presentation.

How to Apply a Layout

Applying a slide layout in Google Slides is very simple:

On Desktop

  1. Open your presentation and select the slide you want to change
  2. Click the Layout button on the toolbar
  3. Choose one of the default layout options

On Mobile

  1. Open your presentation and double tap the slide to change
  2. Tap the 3-dot menu icon
  3. Select Change Layout
  4. Choose from the layout options

That’s it! The selected placeholder boxes will be added to your slide automatically.

Customizing the Layouts

You aren’t limited to the default layouts in Google Slides. You can also customize them to meet your specific needs.

Here are some ways to tailor the layouts:

  • Add placeholders – Insert new content boxes as needed
  • Delete placeholders – Remove any unused boxes
  • Resize placeholders – Make them bigger or smaller
  • Reposition placeholders – Move them around

To do this:

  1. Go to View > Master in the menu
  2. Select the layout to edit
  3. Make your changes
  4. Click Close Master View when finished

The customized layout will now appear as an option when you go to change slide layouts.

Tips for Using Layouts Effectively

  • Stick to 1-2 layouts within a presentation for consistency
  • Use simple layouts for text-heavy slides
  • Try a picture layout for image-focused slides
  • Utilize layouts with columns for comparisons
  • Add plenty of white space around contents
  • Align contents left or center, avoid right align
  • Use a blank layout when you want maximum design flexibility


Applying one of Google Slides’ default layouts is a great way to quickly organize your information in a professional way. With just a couple clicks, you can transform a messy slide into a well-structured one.

And if the existing options don’t quite fit your needs, you can easily customize the layouts to your liking.

So the next time you’re building a presentation, let the layout feature do some of the heavy lifting for you!