Creating and Using Fill-in Fields

Introduction to Fill-in fields

You can add fill-in fields to a dot phrase to make it easy to create customized boilerplate text at the time you expand an abbreviation. A great way to learn more is to watch these snippets in action in our video Fill-in Snippets.

Here is an example of a dot phrase with fill-in fields in action:

TextExpander supports four kinds of fill-in fields, as seen above:

A – Single Line Field: Type in the occupation, who lives at home, or a PHQ9 score.

B – Multi Line Field: Allows for multiple lines of text to appear. The patients current list of providers, their Family History.

C – Optional Section: This content will always be the same, but does not have to appear every time.

D – Popup Menu: Assign a few standard options, like “normal”, “decreased”, “independent”, “requires assistance.”

Creating a Fill-in Snippet

  1. Create a new snippet by selecting New Snippet + in the TextExpander menubar.
  2. Choose the Fill-ins button located at the top of the snippet editor and select one of the options. A dialog will appear to let you customize some of the field’s options.
    • You will notice a fifth option, “Show at top.” This will allow all the fill-in fields to appear at the top of the fill-in window, useful if you create a long snippet with lots of fields.
  3. Set your field’s options, including the field name.
    Field name:
    This helps you remember what to fill the field with as you use the snippet, and let’s TextExpander recognize different fields. If two different fill-in fields of the same type have the same Field Name they are treated as one. Meaning, as you fill out one field, the other will fill with the same text.
  4. Select OK to close the popup dialog. Double-click on the field’s entry to open the dialog and edit the field’s properties again.

Popup Dialog

All of the fields are optional. The fill-in will work even if you don’t change any of the defaults. Note: All fill-ins with the same Field Name will have the same value, so will be filled the same.

  • Field Name:
  • Default Value:
  • Width:


  • Access Fill-ins via the Fill-in button in the editing bar at the top of the snippet editor.
  • Double-click within a field entry to edit it in a popup dialog.
  • Expand other snippets into the fill-in fields in the expansion window.
  • Switch applications without dismissing the fill-in window.
  • Text and popup fill-in fields support default values.
  • “Show at top”: For longer snippets, display the fields at the top of the fill-in window to make filling out the fields easier. This also works for longer script snippets.
  • Type, copy/paste, or expand other snippets in the single-line and multi-line fields.