Updated: 05/03/2022 by Computer Hope

Alternatively called a bullet point, a bullet is an asterisk, black dot, circle, or another mark found before the text. Bullet lists identify key items or denote significance when order does not matter. Bullet points are used in documents and presentations to help organize information and make it easier to read or understand.

Bullet example

  • Example of a bulleted item

Bulleted list example

A bulleted list or bullet list is several items preceded with symbols instead of numbers. Below is an example of such a list.

  • Item one
  • Item two
  • Item three
  • Item four
  • Item five

Why use a bullet list?

A bullet list is used when creating a list of two or more items, and their order is not important. For example, a list of items you want to buy from a store could be shown in a bullet list. A number list should be used if you're creating a list of steps or directions where the order is important.

Which programs use bulleted lists?

Word processors and presentation software are the most common, offering different bullet types and customizations. Web pages can also utilize bulleted lists using the <ul> and <ol> HTML (HyperText Markup Language) tags.

The following image shows the Bullets and Numbering window in Microsoft Word.

Bullets menu in Word


The Microsoft Word keyboard shortcut to create a bullet is Ctrl+Shift+L.


The Google Docs keyboard shortcut to create a bullet is Ctrl+Shift+8.

Asterisk, Check box, Item, Typography terms, UL, Word processor terms