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How To Manage Your Bookmarks In Google Chrome

Managing your bookmarks in Google Chrome is relatively easy to do. Most of us will amass quite a large number of bookmarks over time which then makes finding the one you want an odious task. It’s often easier (and quicker) to search Google for the site you want than scan through a large number of unorganised bookmarks.

However, in Google Chrome it’s quite easy to manage (or organise) your bookmarks into some sort of order that makes using them effortless.

Chrome Bookmarks Bar Basics.

In Google Chrome you access all your bookmarks from the Bookmarks Bar. However, for some reason, Chrome doesn’t show the Bookmarks Bar by default. You have to turn it on yourself. While it’s easy to do, it is mildly annoying.

In this first part of the guide, we’ll go through the basics of using the Chromes bookmarks features.


How To Show The Bookmarks Bar.

There are two ways to show the Bookmarks Bar in Chrome.

  1. Press CTRL and SHIFT and the letter B at the same time on your keyboard.
  2. Click the 3 vertical dots in the top right hand corner, then move pointer onto BOOKMARKS, then click SHOW BOOKMARKS BAR.
Steps taken to enable the Bookmarks Bar from the Chrome settings menu are numbered 1, 2 and 3.
1. Click the 3 dots – 2. Hover over Bookmarks – 3. Click Show Bookmarks Bar.

Adding New Bookmarks To Chrome.

When you want to bookmark a webpage or website there are a couple of ways to do it.

When you’re on a webpage and you want to save as a bookmark you can either

  1. Press CTRL and the letter D on your keyboard
  2. Click the STAR ICON at the very end of the Address Bar.

Either way, the Bookmark Added window will open.

By default, Chrome will save your new bookmark onto the Bookmarks Bar.

Click the DONE button to save the bookmark.

Star icon indicated when saving bookmark in Chrome

Hidden (Or Overflow) Bookmarks In Chrome.

The Bookmarks Bar can only hold so many bookmarks before you run out of space. Once the bar is full, it seems that no more bookmarks are being saved. But they are, there’s a kind of “overflow” for the bookmarks that won’t fit on the bar.

It’s called Hidden Bookmarks and is represented by these two chevrons at the end of the Bookmarks Bar.

Click on the chevrons to reveal your hidden (or overflow) bookmarks.

Hidden (overflow) bookmarks icon is indicated. Overflow bookmarks are visible in Chrome


How To Move (Or Arrange) Your Bookmarks In Chrome.

The Bookmarks Bar is the place to have your most-used bookmarks because they’re easy and quick to get to. While lesser-used bookmarks can be stored under the hidden bookmarks icon (the chevrons).

To move a bookmark you can simply drag and drop it to where you want it to be.

Put your pointer onto the bookmark that you want to move, then hold down the left mouse button. Now move your mouse (drag) and you’ll see the bookmark follow your movements. When it’s in place, let go of the mouse button (drop)

To help position the bookmark properly, as you move it, you’ll see a straight black line appear on the Bar. The line is where the bookmark will go. All other bookmarks will be shunted left or right along the Bar to make way for it.

Note that the black line that appears is nowhere near as big as in the image shown. It’s actually quite small, so you do have to look for it.

Bookmark being dragged along the Bookmarks Bar

You can also use drag and drop to move bookmarks from the hidden bookmarks menu onto the Bookmarks Bar, but obviously, as you do this, something else will drop off the Bar to make way for the new entry. It can be a bit like juggling glass bottles to get it right.

How To Delete Bookmarks.

Over time, you’ll find that you no longer need or use certain web pages that you’ve got saved. These can be deleted to make more room.

To delete a bookmark, simply right-click on it.

Then on the menu that appears, left-click DELETE.

Righ click menu is open. Delete is highlighted.

Beyond The Basics Of Chrome Bookmarks.

Now that we’ve covered the basics of adding, moving, and deleting, it’s time to look at managing your bookmarks to get the most out of them.

One of the main problems is that you’ll probably accumulate way too many bookmarks. At least too many to be able to use effectively. Deleting out the old ones will help a little, but even if you only use a particular bookmark once a year, that doesn’t mean you should have to delete it.

There are many things that you can do to help make things better, easier for yourself.


Chrome Bookmark Folders.

The first thing you can do is to store similar bookmarks in folders. A folder only really takes up the space of a single bookmark, but it could easily hold 10 or 20 plus.

As an example, let’s say you’ve got accounts with Amazon TV and Netflix.

You could easily save both bookmarks into a single folder, along with Youtube, Vimeo, the BBC, and any other video streaming service that you use.

You can obviously do the same for online shopping, online banking, social media, email accounts, etc.

Bookmark folder named Video has been clicked revealing links to various video streaming websites including Amazon and Netflix.
All your video streaming websites in one place.

How To Create Bookmarks Folders In Chrome

To create a folder, right-click on the Bookmarks Bar, then on the menu that opens, left-click ADD FOLDER.

That will open the New Folder window.

Right clicking the bookamrks Bar in Chrome. Menu is visible and Add Folder option is marked.

On the New Folder page, type a name for your folder. Something descriptive of what type of bookmarks are going to go in there.

But try to keep the names short, longer names use up more space on the Bar.

  • Video – for streaming services
  • Banks – for banking and card services
  • Social – for Facebook, Twitter etc.
  • Shops – for shopping sites.

Just below the folder name box, you’ll see two default folders, Bookmarks Bar and Other Bookmarks.

Left-click once on the Bookmarks Bar folder to select it and then click the DONE button.

After you click the DONE button, you’ll return to Chrome.

If your Bookmarks Bar is already full, then you won’t be able to see the folder that you just created. It’ll be in the overflow area.

Click the hidden bookmarks icon (chevrons) and at the bottom of the list you’ll find your new folder.

Drag and drop it onto the Bookmarks Bar wherever you want it to be positioned.

A folder being dragged from bookmarks overflow area to the Bookmarks Bar in Google Chrome.
Drag your folder to wherever you want it to be on the Bar.

Populating Your New Folder.

Now all you need to do is to drag and drop whichever bookmarks you want to go into the folder.

Put your pointer onto the bookmark in question then hold down the left mouse button.

Drag the bookmark directly onto the folder and then release the mouse button.

Be sure that you are directly on top of the folder before releasing the mouse button.

The bookmark will be moved into the folder.

Bookmark being moved along the Bar into a folder.
Drag your current bookmarks and drop them into the folder.

Saving Bookmarks Directly Into Folders.

Now that you’ve got all your current bookmarks sorted into relevant folders, what about any new bookmarks that you might make.

When you’re adding a new webpage as a bookmark by clicking the STAR icon or pressing CTRL + D, the Bookmark Added window opens. Just below the name of the website, you’ll see the FOLDERS box. By default, Google Chrome will save new bookmarks to the Bookmarks Bar.

To save it into a different folder, click the downward-facing arrowhead then click the folder of your choice.

new bookmark being saved into a different folder.
When adding a new bookmark, click the drop down arrow to reveal your folders.
Folder selected
Then select which folder you want the bookmark to be saved into.

Quick Note.

The only slight issue with this is that Chrome will “remember” which folder you saved your bookmark into. So the next time you try to add a new bookmark, it will save into the last folder that you used.

So you have to get used to checking (and changing, if necessary) exactly which folder the bookmark is going to go into before clicking the DONE button.

If you make a mistake, it’s easily rectified by dragging the offending bookmark from the “wrong” folder and dropping it into the “right” folder. But I have temporarily “lost” the occasional bookmark until I’ve realised what I’ve done.

Renaming & Deleting bookmark Folders In Google Chrome.

You can easily rename or delete any of your bookmark folders in Chrome.

Right-click on a folder and on the menu that appears either click RENAME or DELETE.

Please note that deleting a folder will delete all the bookmarks inside that folder

Options menu is open and both Delete and Rename are highlighted in Google Chrome.
Delete or Rename your folder.

Editing Your Google Chrome Bookmarks.

Sometimes the web page that you want to save either has a very long name or a name that doesn’t really describe the page or site.

Long webpage names take up more space on the Chrome Bookmarks Bar than they need to and non-descriptive names are pretty useless.

As an example, take a look at these two bookmarks.

The first one (as many of you will already know) is for eBay, but it doesn’t say eBay, apparently, it’s “Electronics, Cars, Fa”, Whatever Fa is.

And then there’s John Lewis & Partn. That’s a little too long for what it is when space is at a premium.

In Chrome, you can edit, or change, the name of any of your bookmarks, either at the time of adding them or after they’ve been added.

A Question mark beneath the ebay bookmark and john lewis is too long.

To Edit An Existing Bookmark.

Right-click on the bookmark that you want to edit.

On the menu that opens, left-click EDIT.

Chrome Bookmarks Bar has been right clicked and menu is open. Edit is highlighted on the menu.

The Edit Bookmark window will open.

Now type whatever name you want to give to the bookmark into the NAME box.

You can pretty much name it anything you like, but short and descriptive generally works best.

In this example I’ll change “Electronics, Cars, Fa” to simply eBay

When you’re done, click the SAVE button.

To Edit A New Bookmark

When you’re adding a new bookmark, you can change the name of it in the NAME box.

Again you can call it anything that makes sense to you.

Click the DONE button when you’re ready.

Adding a new bookmark. The Name box is indicated.
Save new bookmarks with better, more descriptive names.

Make Even More Room On Your Bookmarks Bar.

There’s another trick that you can do to create extra space on the Google Chrome Bookmarks Bar. And that is to do away with the bookmark name altogether.

Many websites use what’s called a favicon. It’s a small image or maybe a shape that represents the website or company.

And a lot of these favicons are instantly recognisable. So much so that you’ll find you don’t actually need to have a name for the bookmark. You’ll know by the favicon.

You can use that to save more space on your crowded bookmarks Bar in Chrome.

Chrome Bookmarks Bar showing only Favicons. Ebay, CNN, Youtube, Netflix and Amazon.
Do you really need the name of these websites to be displayed?

To achieve this space-saving miracle when you’re adding a new bookmark, just delete everything inside the name box.

The same can be done for existing bookmarks. Just right-click on one of them, left-click EDIT, then delete everything in the NAME box.

This won’t work for every website, just the most well-known ones.

bookmarking Facebook without a name in the Name box.

Google Chrome Bookmarks Manager.

Most of what you may want to do with your bookmarks can be done just in Chrome without needing to go into its settings. But if you’re trying to manage or organise a lot of bookmarks, then there’s a dedicated Bookmarks Manager page.

To open Chromes Bookmarks Manager either

  1. Press CTRL and SHIFT and the letter O on your keyboard at the same time.
  2. Click the 3 vertical dots in the top right corner, then move your pointer onto BOOKMARKS, and then click on BOOKMARKS MANAGER.
Steps for opening Bookmarks Manager in Google Chrome.
1. Click settings icon (3 dots) 2. Hover over Bookmarks 3. Click Bookmarks Manager

Inside the Bookmarks Manager, you’ll see all your current bookmarks and your bookmarking folders.

You can drag and drop bookmarks into folders and even drag folders into folders to become subfolders.

When you’ve got a large number of bookmarks already, it can be easier to organise them from within the Manager, rather than from the Bookmarks Bar itself.

How To Import And Export Chrome Bookmarks.

You can save all your bookmarks into a file, either for safekeeping, or maybe to transfer to another PC or browser. Saving your bookmarks is called exporting. If you already have an exported list of bookmarks, then you can import them into Chrome. Both actions can be done from inside the Bookmarks Manager.

To import or export bookmarks in Google Chrome click the 3 vertical dots in the top right corner. Not the ones in the very top, it’s the 3 dots just below those that you want.

On the menu that opens, click either IMPORT BOOKMARKS or EXPORT BOOKMARKS.

Call out indicating which settings icon (3 dots) to click to access the Chrome Bookmarks Manager options menu.
Be sure to click the correct 3 dots.
Chrome Bookmarks Manager options menu is open and Import and Export bookmarks options are both highlighted.
Choose either Import or Export Bookmarks.

To Export Bookmarks From Chrome.

To export your bookmarks in Google Chrome, click EXPORT on the menu.

The standard Windows Save As window will open allowing you to decide where to save the file.

The exported bookmarks will be in the HTML format so that it can be used by pretty much any browser.

How To Save A File On A PC

Choose where to save your file.

To Import Bookmarks Into Chrome.

To import bookmarks into Chrome, on the menu, click IMPORT BOOKMARKS.

Then navigate to your saved bookmarks file (the HTML file), select it, and click the OPEN button.

How To Use Windows File Explorer

HTML file selected.


Managing (or organsing) a large collection of bookmarks can take some time and a little planning, but in Google Chrome it’s not difficult to do, and the results are well worth the effort.

This guide deals specifically with managing your bookmarks in Google Chrome. If you want a more complete guide to using Chrome, setting the Home page, Start page and other settings in Chrome, then click here How To Use Google Chrome

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