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How to Add Animated GIFs in Google Slides for More Lively Presentations


The right animated GIF in a Google Slides presentation can grab attention. Here’s how to insert them for subtle effects.


This article will show you how to insert animated GIFs in Google Slides or more dynamic presentations.


GIFs haven’t yet outlived their usefulness. These small animations can be tremendous timesavers for conveying your message in one slide. Moreover, with a suitable animated GIF, you don’t have to create several graphics on multiple slides. And finding a specific animated GIF is more accessible thanks to the explosion of memes and sites like Giphy, Reddit, and Tumblr.


Drag and Drop to Add an Animated GIF to a Google Slide

The easiest method to put animated GIFs on a Google Slide is to drag and drop them from the desktop. Open Google Slide and the slide where you want to place the GIF. Then, select the downloaded GIF on your desktop and drop it on the slide.

Copy-pasting a GIF to a slide turns it into a static image. Also, Google Slides doesn’t support Google’s own WebP file format, in which few GIFs are saved on your desktop from sites like Tumblr.

The Insert menu offers several options to upload animated GIFs to your Google Slide. If you have used animated GIFs in Google Docs, you will find them familiar. Open a slide and take your pick from the three main methods below.

Upload From Computer

This is the obvious option when creating GIFs on your PC or converting a YouTube snippet into an animated GIF.

  1. Select Insert > Image > Upload from computer.
  2. Browse to the saved location and select Open in the Explorer window to insert the GIF.
  3. Drag the GIF to the desired location on the slide or use the corner anchor points to resize the animation.

Inserting an animated GIF on Google Slides

Search the Web

You can find a rich collection of animated GIFs using the right keywords. For instance, use Google’s Advanced Image Search to find images with the right size, aspect ratio, or type (animated), among other parameters.

  1. Select Insert > Image > Search the web.
  2. Enter a keyword like [search term] animated GIF on the Google Search side panel.
  3. Choose the suitable GIF from the results, and select Insert.

Use Google Search in Google Slides to insert an animated GIF

You can select the little magnifying lens icon on the image to preview the file in the Google sidebar. Then, select Insert on the Preview window.

By URL

If the URL doesn’t embed the GIF on the slide, use the shareable URL or see if you can strip the hyperlink of the extra parameters that trail the .gif file format extension.

  1. Go to some of the recommended GIF sites or use a search engine to find the right GIF.
  2. Right-click on the GIF and select Copy image address from the browser’s context menu. Alternatively, you can use the animated GIF’s share link.
    Copy image address from the browser's context menu

  3. Select Insert > Image > By URL and paste the link in the field to display the animation on the slide.
    Paste the link in the field to display the animation on the slide

You can also pick up an animation from any other Drive folder, access them from Photos, or pick them up from another Drive document.

Tips for Creatively Adding GIFs to Google Slides

Using an animated GIF in a title slide

Displaying animated GIFs in a Google Slide is the easy part. But then, you have to apply your creativity to artfully place and design the slide so that the animation doesn’t look out of place. So here are some suggestions for presenting with an animated GIF.

  • Enhance boring slides: Use them on the static title and concluding slides.
  • Check the animation speed: Animated GIF charts can be eye-catching when the animation gives the audience enough time to absorb the data.
  • Explain a process: Animated GIFs can be a presentation within a presentation. Use them to explain a complex process in a single slide.
  • Add Context: Drop the correct GIF on a slide where you need to add more context for the text.
  • Enhance with Format Options: Tweak the appearance of the GIF with the help of Format options in the Google Slides toolbar.
  • Optimize for Size: Check the GIF’s file size as they often can be larger than videos. So, converting them to video might be a better optimization option.
  • Break for Humor: Add animated GIFs to add fun or change the pace of a data-heavy presentation.

Remember always to ensure that you have permission to use the animated GIFs. Also, check the type of Creative Commons license the graphic comes with.

Don’t Overuse GIF Animations

Subtlety is the key to using GIF animations, and it shouldn’t take over the message. Animated GIFs are visual aids, which may be right for some presentations while jarring for others. For instance, you can have a lot of creative flexibility in a presentation for school but not for a business presentation. So, try out animated GIFs in Google Slides for more interactive presentations.

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