Google Drive is a great cloud storage tool, but as you add files and folders, things can get messy. Shortcuts are a fantastic way to keep your Drive organized without the hassle of duplicating files, especially when you're working with multiple Drives. With Shortcuts, you and your team can easily find and organize files.

What is a Google Drive Shortcut? A shortcut is a link to an existing file or folder stored within your Drive. The shortcut appears in a new location of your choice but points back to the original file. This way, you have a single item accessible from multiple locations without taking up extra storage. You can use them in your drive or a shared drive, and they are visible to everyone with access to the folder or drive.

However, when opening the shortcut, the original file's permissions apply. So, even if a person can see the shortcut, they won't be able to open it unless they also have access to the original. They can request access to the original file from the owner using the shortcut.

Creating a Shortcut in Google Drive

You can create a shortcut in Google Drive from both the desktop and the Google Drive mobile app.

On Desktop

To create a shortcut, follow these steps.

  1. Open Google Drive on your computer.
  2. Right-click on the file or folder you want to create the shortcut.
  3. Go to 'Organize' from the context menu and select 'Add Shortcut' from the sub-menu.
  1. Then, select the location where you want to add the shortcut and click on 'Add'.

You can also use keyboard shortcuts to create a shortcut in Google Drive.

  1. Select the file or folder in Google Drive and click the Ctrl + C (Windows)/ Cmd + C (Mac) keys from your keyboard.
  2. Then, go to the location where you want to create the shortcut. Now, press the Ctrl + Shift + V (Windows)/ Cmd + Shift + V (Mac) keys on your keyboard to create the shortcut.

You can also delete a shortcut at any time. If you're not the owner of the file, you can only delete the shortcut and not the original file.

  1. To delete a shortcut, right-click on it and select 'Move to Trash' from the context menu.

The shortcut will be moved to the trash and will be deleted permanently after 30 days. You can also manually delete it from the trash before that.

On Mobile

  1. Open the Google Drive mobile app on your iOS or Android device.
  2. Then, go to the file/ folder and tap the three-dot menu on its right.
  3. From the menu, select the 'Add Shortcut to Drive' option.
  1. Choose the location for the shortcut by tapping on it.
  2. Then, either choose a folder in that location or tap 'Add' to create a shortcut directly.

You can also delete the shortcut from the mobile app.

  1. Go to the shortcut and tap the three dots next to it.
  2. Then, select 'Remove' from the menu.
  1. Tap 'Move to Bin' from the confirmation message.

Shortcuts are a great way to streamline your workflow by making it easy to organize your drive and collaborate with your teammates without anyone having to navigate complex folder paths.