Task 6: Table structure

To support navigation through tables, MadeToTag allows you to assign table structure tags. This function primarily lets you distinguish header cells column or row headings from normal cells.

  1. The Status section tells you the number of tables in articles and stories as well as those in any associated anchored frames.
  2. The number of tables which may be outside of assigned articles is also shown.
  3. The Navigate to tables section lets you navigate between available tables using the arrow buttons so that you can work on each table one after another.
  4. The Configure table headers menu lets you set up table headers and row or column headers.

Four options are available.

Use InDesign defined column headers

  1. The Use Adobe InDesign defined column headers process uses InDesign table headers for tagging purposes. This procedure is advisable if the table structure is already correctly configured within the InDesign document.
  2. If the existing tags are not immediately usable in InDesign, you can use Reset table to delete them.

A warning box will ask you whether you really want to remove the table tags.

Tag using Quick Headers

  1. Quick Headers are defined using the number of row and column headers. You can enter the values in the corresponding fields.
  2. It can be helpful to enable the Highlight table cells option to see the rows and columns for which the table headers have been specified. These will be shown in a darker color tone.

Table with Highlight table cells activated without tagged headers.

Table with Highlight table cells activated with tagged headers.


The Smart Headers option lets you Activate Smart Headers edit mode to freely define which cells should be identified as header cells.

The Smart Header process lets you mark any cells within a table using your cursor. These will be highlighted in green during this process. Starting with a previously selected table cell, you can even define very complex cell assignments.

To do so, follow these steps:

  • Click on the desired cells to select them (Important: “Smart Header edit mode” must be enabled.)
  • The selected cells will be highlighted in green with a dotted border.
  • You can then use Command+Click to mark cells as child elements. Child cells will be marked in blue.
  • This assignment will identify the originally selected cell as a header cell and assign the child cell to this header.
  • You can also click and drag or Command+Click and drag to select or assign multiple cells at once.
  • You can also nest child cell assignments, creating tiered header cell relationships.
  • The position of header cells and child elements within a table is irrelevant for Smart Header functionality; however, the table should be structured clearly and comprehensibly.
  • Hold the Shift key while assigning cells to turn the highlighted cell into a parent cell instead of a child cell, making the parent cell into a header for the originally selected cell(s). It is not possible to mark multiple cells as parents by keeping the Switch key pressed down. In other words, you can only ever assign one parent cell at a time.

Table is a “layout table”

In some cases, the InDesign table function is used purely for design reasons rather than to create an actual data table. In this case, it is important to clear the table tagging structure to prevent confusion in the accessible PDF. This cleanup can be performed using the Table is a “layout table” option.



I am having troubles with the Table feature. I have a relatively simple table with one Header Row and one Header Column. But, when I export them the Column headers are still showing as Tags and not
Also, I can't get the Smart Headers feature to work as described. I have tried selecting the table first, then trying to assign the cells, not selecting anything then trying to do it. It just isn't working as I had expected. Any help would be wonderful! I want to be able to make my Tables export properly without having to do much or any remediation after the fact. Thank you!

René Treuber

Hi Karyn,

thanks for your comment. We're not happy to see that it seems to not working as expected. Could you send us the InDesign document, please? We'd like to analyse whether it is an issue with the document or something more general. The exact InDesign version number as well as the MadeToTag version number would be interesting as well. You'll reach us best at [email protected]!

Kind regards,

Add your comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.