How To Make A Digital Checklist

by Sep 10, 2020Creating Printables

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Checklists are a great freebie to grow your email list. They provide quick solutions to a problem. But taking that checklist and making it digital allows you to help your audience on multiple platforms.

Being able to use a checklist on a phone or tablet, makes it the perfect tool for this electronic world. 

There are a couple ways that you can make a digital checklist and the best part is that they are SUPER EASY to do. The hardest part for you will be figuring out what you want to include on your checklist.

Of the two options, you can go either the pretty way or the basic. Both are great. The only difference is that with the pretty option you can add your artistic flair!

For me though, I have been loving the basic digital checklist (I will show you why further down the post). So let’s get into the two digital checklists and take your freebie to the next level. 

What Is A Digital Checklist?

Before we go any further, let me first describe what I mean by digital checklist. A digital checklist is one that a person is able to access and use on an electronic device like their computer, tablet, or phone.

That means they are able to check off items to that list wherever and whenever. 

Take a moment and think about how enticing that will make your opt-in freebie. Now your subscribers have the ability to use your product at any opportunity. They are not limited by needing it printed. 

Instead, they can use it as soon as they get it.

How Do You Make A Digital Checklist?

So like I said above, there are two ways that you can make a digital checklist. Before you make your list, I recommend using the word document of your choice (Google Docs or Microsoft Word) and write the list.

If your list has many items within it, then I recommend dividing them into sections. This will make it easier for your subscribers to read.

Okay, onto making the lists!

Digital Checklist #1: Spreadsheet 

This is the basic checklist and my mind was blown when I discovered this was something I could do! Both Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets give you the ability to do this. 

I mean, how awesome is it that you can make a simple checklist where people can mark off items and you can access it anywhere!

I had no idea until one day, I decided to do a Google search on how to make a digital checklist. At that time I was trying to find other ways to make an editable PDF but got lucky and found this.

Out of the two options, I prefer Google Sheets for making this type of checklist. The process is a little simpler compared to Excel. There is only a small difference that does not matter if you prefer to use Excel.

There Are Two Kinds Of Checklists You Can Make In A Spreadsheet.

How nifty is that? Now you can create a little personalization to your checklist. You are not stuck with only one option. 

One style is a checkbox and the other is a drop-down menu. And the best part is that you follow the same process to make each.

How To Make A Digital Checklist In Google Sheets

Step 1: Open A New Google Sheets

Step 2: Highlight Cells

Select all the cells that you will be using for the checkmark portion of your list. If you are unsure, which cells you want to use then start with selecting only one cell. You can always duplicate it later.

Step 3: Create List With “Data Validation”

You can do this by either right-clicking a cell OR clicking the Data tab in the top menu bar. Click Data validation (for either method).

how to make a digital checklist

Step 4: Choose Your List Style

Open the drop-down menu for Criteria and select either List of items or Checkbox

how to make a digital checklist

Step 4: Choose Your List Style

Open the drop-down menu for Criteria and select either List of items or Checkbox

If you choose List of items, then you will need to enter what you want the drop-down list to say. Also, don’t forget to use commas to separate the items.

For example, you can use “complete, still working on it, not started”.

how to make a digital checklist
how to make a digital checklist

You can do any kind of combination of words you want or only choose one word. The final product is what you envision!

Step 5: Click Save

You have now created a section to check off your list. 

Checkbox Option

how to make a digital checklist

Drop-Down Menu Option

how to make a digital checklist

Bonus Step: Duplicate

Need to make more checkmark boxes or drop-down menus? One method is to do the standard copy and paste. This works better if you already have created a large number of checkmark boxes.

Or the easier method is to move your mouse to the bottom right-hand corner of the cell. When you see a plus sign, left-click and drag to where you want it to go.

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How To Make A Digital Checklist In Microsoft Excel

To create a drop-down menu style checklist, you can use either the desktop application or the app that comes with your Outlook email. Unfortunately, the free version that comes with Outlook does not have the ability to create a checkbox.

First I am going to show you how to create a drop-down menu checklist. The process is similar to Google Sheets.

Drop-Down Checklist

Step 1: Open A New Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet

Step 2: Highlight Cells 

Select all the cells that you will be using for the checkmark portion of your list. If you are unsure, which cells you want to use then start with selecting only one cell. You can always duplicate it later.

Step 3: Create List With “Data Validation”

To find the Data Validation option, you will click the Data tab in the top menu. It is located in the Data Tools section. Click Data Validation to open the settings window.

how to make a digital checklist

Open the drop-down menu for Allow and select either List. Enter what you want the drop-down list to say. Also, don’t forget to use commas to separate the items.

For example, you can use “all done, still working on it, not started”.

how to make a digital checklist

You can do any kind of combination of words you want or only choose one word. The final product is what you envision!

Checkbox Checklist

This checklist can only be completed with the paid version of Microsoft Excel. 

Step 1: Open A New Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet

Step 2: Inserting Checkbox From Developer Tab

Go to the Developer tab on the top menu. In the Controls section, you will see a drop-down menu for Insert. Click it and select the checkbox in form controls. 

how to make a digital checklist

Then click a cell of your choice for the checkbox to be inserted. When you select the checkbox, you can move it to the cell of your choice. 

how to make a digital checklist

Step 3: Editing the Checkbox

After you add the checkbox to your spreadsheet, you will notice that there is text associated with it. I recommend deleting the text leaving only the checkbox. 

Instead, add text to the cell adjoining your checkmark box. This will make duplicate the checkbox much easier for you.

Bonus Step for Both Types of Checklists: Duplicate

Need to make more checkmark boxes or drop-down menus? One method is to do the standard copy and paste. This works better if you already have created a large number of checkmark boxes.

Or the easier method is to move your mouse to the bottom right-hand corner of the cell. When you see a plus sign, left-click and drag to where you want it to go.

how to make a digital checklist

Digital Checklist #2: Editable Printable

This type of checklist allows you to be more creative. Use a graphic design tool like Canva or PowerPoint. These programs allow you to use graphic elements to make it unique from others.

Once you have created your checklist, you will then save the file as a PDF. 

From there, you need to use a PDF tool that lets you make it editable. If you have Adobe Acrobat, then this option is available through their program. 

Here is Adobe’s guide to creating an editable printable.

If you are not using a paid PDF program, then I recommend using PDFescape. This is a free PDF tool that you can use to make your printable editable.

Want some help in learning how to use this free PDF tool? Then check out this blog post HERE.

how to make a digital checklist

And that’s it! You can now make a digital checklist whenever you want. Whether you choose to use a spreadsheet or make your PDF editable, they are a great tool to help grow your blog and help your audience. 

Why Should You Use A Digital Checklist?

There are three simple reasons why you need to create a digital checklist and they are:

1. Easy To Create

Digital checklists are incredibly easy to create and will not take too much of your time. The hardest part will be you figuring out what you want to include in your checklist.

Creative Tip: 

Either change the text color of the fill color of the cell to organize your checklist. It also lets you add some personalization to your spreadsheet.

2. Access Anywhere

Your subscribers can use this checklist at any point no matter where they are. That is a powerful tool. So let’s say that you created a baby nursery checklist or a bridal registry checklist, your subscriber can both access it and edit it as they use it.

That is supremely powerful. People are always on their phones and giving them the ability to use your product at any point is a good business strategy.

3. Simple To Deliver

Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel (both the online and desktop versions) provide you with the ability to share your content easily. All you need to do is locate the share button and copy the link. It is that simple.

For both Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel, you can share your digital checklist by either clicking the share button in the top-right corner OR in the File tab located in the main menu.

Google Sheets:

Microsoft Excel:

how to make a digital checklist

Paste the link into your opt-in form OR you could insert it into a button.

Final Thoughts On Digital Checklists

I absolutely love these types of checklists. They provide me a way to help my readers in another platform. I mean who doesn’t love being able to access what they need wherever they want it,

I personally like to use a combination of a printable checklist and a digital checklist. This way my reader will use the one that works best for them.

So quick reminder on the best practices when creating a checklist to make the process easier for you.

  1. Write out or type your list before you begin making your opt-in freebie.
  2. If it is a big list, then break it into sections that are easier for your subscribers to use.
  3. Give your readers the option of both a printable checklist and a digital checklist.
So what do you think?

Do these checklists sound like a freebie you can use to grow your blog? Which digital checklist do you like best?

Tell me about in the comments below or feel free to email your thoughts at caitiej@theprintablesblog.com.

Happy Days –

the printables blog

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