How to Mass Delete Google Docs: A Step-by-Step Guide


Matthew Burleigh

Looking to free up some space or declutter your Google Drive? Mass deleting Google Docs can be a breeze if you know the right steps to take. In just a few clicks, you can select multiple documents and send them to the trash. Remember, it’s always a good idea to double-check that you’re not deleting any important files before you start.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Mass Delete Google Docs

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what we’re aiming for. Mass deleting Google Docs will help you clean up your digital workspace, get rid of unnecessary files, and make it easier to find the documents you actually need.

Step 1: Access Google Drive

Log into your Google account and open Google Drive.

Google Drive is the home of all your Google Docs, so the first thing you need to do is navigate to and sign in with your Google account credentials.

Step 2: Select the Docs

Click on ‘My Drive’, then hold down the ‘Shift’ key and click on the documents you wish to delete.

Once you’re in ‘My Drive’, you’ll see all your files and folders. To select multiple Google Docs, click on the first one, hold down the ‘Shift’ key, and then click on the last document in the range you want to delete. All the files in between will be selected.

Step 3: Right-click and Choose ‘Remove’

Right-click on the selected documents and choose ‘Remove’ from the drop-down menu.

After selecting the documents, right-click on any of the highlighted files. A menu will appear with various options, and you’ll want to click on ‘Remove’ to send these files to the trash.

Step 4: Empty the Trash (Optional)

For a permanent delete, go to ‘Trash’, select all documents, right-click, and choose ‘Delete forever’.

If you’re sure you won’t need these documents again, you can permanently delete them. Go to the ‘Trash’ folder in Google Drive, select the documents, right-click, and choose ‘Delete forever’. Caution: There’s no going back after this step, so be absolutely certain before you proceed.

After completing these steps, the selected Google Docs will be moved to the trash. If you skipped the optional step, your documents will be in the trash for 30 days before being permanently deleted, giving you some time to recover them if you change your mind.

Tips for Mass Deleting Google Docs

  • Before deleting, make sure you have backups of any important documents.
  • Use the ‘search’ feature in Google Drive to find and select multiple files quickly.
  • If you’re part of a shared workspace, confirm that no one else needs the documents before deleting.
  • Take advantage of Google Drive’s ‘sort’ feature to organize your files by ‘Last modified’ or ‘Name’ for easier selection.
  • Remember that deleted files count toward your Google Drive storage until they are permanently removed from the trash.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I recover deleted Google Docs?

Deleted Google Docs can be recovered from the trash within 30 days of deletion.

If you accidentally delete a document, simply go to the ‘Trash’ folder in Google Drive, right-click on the file you want to recover, and select ‘Restore’. The document will be moved back to its original location.

Does mass deleting Google Docs free up storage space?

Yes, permanently deleting Google Docs will free up storage space in your Google Drive.

However, remember that files in the trash still count towards your storage limit. For the space to be freed up, you need to empty the trash or wait for 30 days until the files are automatically deleted.

What if I only want to delete specific files in a range?

You can use the ‘Ctrl’ (or ‘Cmd’ on Mac) key to select individual files within a range.

Click on the first file, then hold down the ‘Ctrl’ (or ‘Cmd’) key and click on any additional files you want to delete. This way, you can skip over files you want to keep.

Can I undo a deletion?

You can undo a deletion immediately after by pressing ‘Ctrl + Z’ (or ‘Cmd + Z’ on Mac) or by clicking ‘Undo’ in the notification that appears.

However, this only works right after the deletion. If you navigate away or close the tab, you’ll need to recover the files from the trash.

Will deleting shared Google Docs remove access for others?

Deleting a shared Google Doc will remove access for others once the file is permanently deleted.

While the document is in the trash, others can still view it if they have the link. However, once it’s permanently deleted, the file is no longer accessible to anyone.


  1. Access Google Drive.
  2. Select the Docs.
  3. Right-click and Choose ‘Remove’.
  4. Empty the Trash (Optional).


Mass deleting Google Docs can be a great way to declutter your digital workspace and ensure a more productive environment. By following the simple steps outlined, you can quickly and efficiently get rid of unnecessary documents. Just remember to double-check that the files you’re deleting are not needed, and consider making backups for important documents. With a cleaner Google Drive, you’ll have an easier time finding the files you need and can enjoy a more organized virtual space. So, why not give it a try and see how it can improve your workflow?

Matthew Burleigh

Matthew Burleigh has been writing tech content online for more than ten years. He enjoys writing about Google Docs in addition to many other applications and devices and has cumulatively covered Google’s word-processing application in hundreds of different articles.

He has been published on dozens of popular websites, and his works have accumulated millions of pageviews.
While focused primarily on tutorials and guides for popular electronics like the iPhone and iPad, as well as common applications like Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel, he covers topics across the entire technology spectrum.

You can read his bio here.

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