Numbers: Fitting Your Content to a Printed Page

If you use Numbers a lot, you’ve probably run across the issue of your spreadsheet not fitting onto the page you want to print it on. So you go to print, and you see something ugly like this:

Hey, Numbers, if my columns could NOT bleed over onto page two, that’d be really nice.

Luckily, this is pretty easy to fix on both the old version of Numbers (from iWork ’09) and the new one (for Mavericks), and you won’t have to adjust any column sizes by hand or anything. In the old version of Numbers, you’ll look at the bottom of the window for the small icon indicated in my screenshot below.

That turns on Print View. When you click it, you’ll get a look at how your document will print out, along with a handy-dandy little slider to adjust it at the bottom of the window:

That Content Scale slider will increase or decrease the size of your table, and as you move it forward and back, you’ll get a preview of your changes in the main Numbers window. You can switch back and forth between portrait and landscape orientations there, as well, to figure out exactly how you want things to look:

When you’re happy with the way your document is set up, click on the Print View icon again to go back to the normal Numbers view, or you could go ahead and print out your document, which should now be perfectly formatted.

In the Mavericks version of Numbers, this process is even easier. Press Command-P or choose File> Print, and you’ll be taken to the all-new print dialog. Within that window, you’ll see the same Content Scale slider, the option to print portrait or landscape, and even a “Fit” button, which’ll attempt to force your content into the perfect size for printing.

So no matter which version of Numbers you’re using, you can easily configure exactly how you want your document to appear on a page. I do like the idea of avoiding wasting 20 pieces of printer paper on my tiny little spreadsheets!