Making a copy of a Google Drive document when using your own account is a simple matter. However, what if we could share files with collaborators who automatically make a copy when they receive them, wouldn’t that be wild? Well, probably not, but it’s still cool.

The idea behind what we’re talking about might not make much sense from the periphery, so let’s try to better explain what we’re trying to accomplish, here. OK, and if you could share documents with colleagues or anyone you’ve collaborated with, but instead there’s only one copy of the document, Docs decided to create a tool.

You see, one document will be edited by the person you are working with, while the other is a copy of the original document without the changes made. By doing this, it is not necessary to use the Case > make a copy command because everything is automatic now.

Automatically copy Google Docs files when shared

Google doesn’t make it easy to automatically create a copy of a document when it’s shared. In this article, we’ll show you how to do it, and quickly. You will have 3 steps to follow:

  1. Locate Google Drive document
  2. Define access
  3. Share the link but with a twist

1]Locate the Google Drive document

Each collaborator, in most cases, is required to individually make changes to a document. By going this route, collaborators can make changes to their own documents without having to worry about corrupting the original version.

There is no need to ask anyone to make a copy, just follow the steps we are about to lay out and everything will be handled automatically.

OK, first you’ll want to locate the Google Drive document you want to share and open it. You should see a blue share button in the upper right section of the document. Click it, then select Share with people and groups. From there, click in the Get link box to generate the shareable link.

2]Set Access

Once you click the box, please select Copy Link, and from there you can share it with anyone via email, one of the many messaging services, or any other way you you feel most comfortable with.

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Now what’s cool here is the ability to set access. People can choose between Viewer, Commenter or Editor. To do this, click on the arrow on the right that points down.

3]Share the link but with a touch

Automatically copy Google Docs files when shared

Now is the time to share the link with your collaborators, but it won’t be a standard cut-and-paste affair. Once you have copied the link, then it is necessary to delete everything after the last slash in the link and replace the deleted content with the copy. From there, share the link to the list of recipients.

When they’ve clicked on the shared link, it should quickly redirect them to their Google Drive screen, which will ask them to create a copy. When the button is selected, a local copy is immediately saved to their Google Drive, and that’s it.

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