How to email a document

Documents – that is, computer files – can be attached to an email so that the recipient can receive your party invitation or view your holiday snaps at the touch of a button.

This guide will show you how to attach a document to an email using Gmail. However, you’ll find this information relevant to the majority of email accounts. This guide is written for Windows users.
You’ll need:
  • an email account, set up and ready to send and receive email
  • a document saved on your computer.
Follow these step-by-step instructions to email a document
Step 1: Log in to your email account so that you are on the dashboard (front page) of your mail account.
Step 2: Click Compose. Alternatively, you can reply to an email that you’ve received by double-clicking on it in your list of received emails, then following the same steps.
Step 3: Once your new email is open, type your recipient’s email address in the ‘To’ field. Then put a title for your email in the ‘Subject’ box and type your message.
Composing an email in Gmail
Step 4: Click on the paper clip icon at the bottom of the compose window. 
Step 5: Browse through your Windows folders until you reach the document you want to attach to your email. Highlight this by clicking on it and then click Open. This will add the document as an attachment to your email.
Step 6: You can tell that your document has been attached to you email by its file name appearing in blue text at the bottom of the compose window.
Step 7: If you want to attach another document, click the paperclip icon again and repeat steps 4 and 5.
Attached document in Gmail compose window
Step 8: When you’re ready to send your email, click Send.
Karen Maxwell is a Digital Unite tutor and assessor/trainer of computer accessibility.

Got a question?

Got a question?
Click here to ask our online community and tutors.


Monica Skopac's picture

By Monica Skopac on 27th December 2012

I think this guide is very,very good!
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 30th December 2012

Thank you very much, Monica!
Dogara daniel's picture

By Dogara daniel on 5th February 2013

I really like the explaination stapes
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 8th February 2013

Thank you!
Clive Robson's picture

By Clive Robson on 13th September 2013

Thank you so much for the lesson.
DU Community Manager's picture

By DU Community Manager on 13th September 2013

Our pleasure, Clive!
salehah's picture

By salehah on 15th November 2014

What exactly is meant by 'copy and paste' and in what circumstances would we need to.

By SUKPEN DANIEL JUNIOR on 27th February 2015

Fantastic explanation to how to email a document