How to add audio to Google Slides

Google Slides logo on yellow gradient background.

Adding audio to your presentation, whether it’s soft background music for a wedding slideshow or a voice recording for a distance learning session, can keep your audience interested, engaged. and entertained. Here’s how to do it with Google Slides.

How audio insertion in Google Slides works

While this is a seemingly straightforward feature, inserting audio into Google Slides hasn’t always been an option. Previously, the only way to insert audio into your Google Slides presentation was to insert a video or link to a site like Spotify. It was not possible to insert the audio file alone. Fortunately, now you can.

The caveat here is that you cannot download the files directly from your local computer. You can only download them from Google Drive. So unlike PowerPoint where you can record your audio right in the app, you’ll have to record your audio separately for Google Slides, upload the audio to Google Drive, and then add it to your presentation from there.

This is obviously not limited to audio recordings. As long as the audio files are MP3 or WAV, you can download any type of audio including music.

RELATED: How to convert WAV file to MP3

Upload audio to Google Drive

If you haven’t uploaded your audio file to Google Drive yet, go to your Google Drive account and click the “New” button in the upper left corner of the window.

Click on the New button.

Then click on “File Download” from the menu that appears.

Click Upload File.

File Explorer (or Finder on Mac) will open. Find and select the file you want to download, then click “Open.”

Click Open to download the audio file.

How to import audio into Google Slides

Once the audio file has downloaded, open your Google Slides presentation to which you want to add audio, click “Insert” in the menu bar, then click “Audio.”

Click Insert, then click Audio from the menu.

The “Audio Insertion” window will appear. In the “My Drive” tab, select the file you want to download by clicking on it.

Select the audio to download.

Then click on the blue “Select” button in the lower left corner of the window.

Click Select.

A speaker icon in a gray circle will appear on the slide. You can resize the icon by clicking and dragging the handles that appear when selected. You can also rearrange the position of the icon by clicking and dragging it to the new location.

Below the icon you will find the play / pause and volume options.

You can also choose how and when audio is played during the presentation. When you click on the icon, the “Formatting Options” pane appears on the right side of the window. You will automatically be in the “Audio playback” group.

Under “Start playing” you can decide if you want the audio to play when you click the audio icon or if you want it to play automatically when you navigate to the slide.

Play audio automatically or on click.

You can also preset the audio volume during the presentation. Click and drag the slider under “Volume when presenting” to adjust it.

Adjust the audio playback volume.

Under the slider, you will see these three options:

  • Hide icon during presentation – This option, as the name suggests, hides the icon when you present. This option is only available if you have selected the option for audio to start automatically.
  • Audio loop – Once your audio reaches the end, it will start over. This is ideal for background music at a wedding or graduation ceremony.
  • Stop slide change – Once you move to the next slide, the audio will end.

Additional reading options.

That’s all we can say about it. Adjust the reading options according to the atmosphere of your presentation.

Now that you know how to add audio, try mastering some other basic functions to create the ultimate slideshow.

RELATED: The Beginner’s Guide to Google Slides

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