PowerPoint 2016: Using Find & Replace

The Find and Replace feature in PowerPoint 2016 is an invaluable tool for efficiently updating text and formatting across an entire presentation. Whether you need to correct a misspelling, change a company name, or modify text formatting, Find and Replace allows you to make multiple changes at once, ensuring consistency and saving time.

Accessing Find and Replace

Find and Replace can be easily accessed in PowerPoint 2016 by:

  • Clicking the Replace button in the Editing group on the Home tab of the Ribbon
  • Using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + H

This will open up the Find and Replace dialog box.

Performing a Basic Find and Replace

To perform a basic find and replace:

  1. Enter the text you want to find in the Find what field
  2. Enter the replacement text in the Replace with field
  3. Click Find Next to jump to the first occurrence of the text
  4. Click Replace to change the currently selected text, or Replace All to change all occurrences

For example, to replace all instances of the company name “ABC Corp” with “XYZ Inc”, you would:

  1. Type “ABC Corp” in Find what
  2. Type “XYZ Inc” in Replace with
  3. Click Replace All

Using Advanced Find and Replace Options

Clicking More > > in the Find and Replace dialog box gives you access to some powerful advanced options:

  • Match case: Makes the search case-sensitive
  • Find whole words only: Only finds standalone instances of the text, not parts of larger words
  • Use wildcards: Allows the use of wildcards like asterisks (*) and question marks (?) in your search
  • Sounds like: Finds words that sound similar to the entered text
  • Find all word forms: Finds different forms of the word, like plurals and verb conjugations

Replacing Text Formatting

Not only can you find and replace text, but PowerPoint 2016 also allows you to find and replace text formatting.

To replace a certain text style:

  1. Click More > >
  2. Click Format
  3. Select the text style to replace
  4. Leave the Replace with field blank
  5. Click Replace All

This will remove the selected text style from all text in the presentation.

Replacing Within Tables, Charts, and Other Objects

The standard Find and Replace feature won’t search within tables, charts, SmartArt, and other objects. To find and replace text within these items:

  1. Click the object to select it
  2. Go to the Drawing Tools Format tab
  3. Click Edit Text in the Text group
  4. Use Find and Replace as normal within the text box

Undoing and Redoing Replacements

If you replace some text and then realize you shouldn’t have, PowerPoint 2016 allows you to undo it:

  • Undo the last replacement: Ctrl + Z
  • Undo all replacements: Click the arrow next to Undo on the Quick Access Toolbar and select Replace All

To redo a replacement you had undone:

  • Redo the last undone replacement: Ctrl + Y
  • Redo multiple undone replacements: Click the arrow next to Redo on the Quick Access Toolbar

Tips for Efficient Use

  • Always test Find and Replace on a copy of your presentation first
  • Use Replace All cautiously – review changes before saving
  • Name ranges to find and replace text in multiple objects
  • Use the Selection Pane to find and replace text in individual objects

The Find and Replace tool can save you significant time when updating presentations, ensure you use it efficiently and cautiously. Mastering Find and Replace in PowerPoint 2016 takes your editing abilities to an advanced level.