What are layout rules?

Layout rules allow you to define the relative placement of surround elements on the page layout and dynamically adjust your page sizes. You can create placement rules that will maintain consistent placement across all map documents. You can create placement rules for any surround element.


If more than one element exists in the layout view with the same name, rules will be applied to the most recent element added in the layout.

The Element Placement tab

The Element Placement tab consists of placement rules and rule properties. Placement rules determine the vertical and horizontal alignment in relation to another element on the page layout. When you create placement rules, you designate where the element appears on the page based on the placement of a different point of reference. You could place a map title based on the position of the data frame.

Placement Rules

The Placement Rules list displays the content of your rules. You can group placement rules to make them easier to manage. For example, you can group a horizontal rule and a vertical rule for placing a scale bar. These rules will move in the rule order together. You can edit, ungroup, copy, paste, rename, move, and remove rules.

You can search your placement rules for specific text. If there are several placement rules in your Placement Rules list, you can group, expand, and collapse all the rules.

Rule Properties

In the Rule Properties area, you can define the alignment of an element by forming a sentence with the interface. For example, "Align the Bottom of Title Above the Top of Layers At a distance of one centimeter." In this case, the Title text will always be one centimeter above the Layers data frame, so if you move the data frame, the title will move with it.

The Adjustable Page Size tab

The Adjustable Page Size tab allows you to specify page sizes, orientations, and margin distances. Use this tab to quickly set page size properties. You can also create new page sizes, remove existing page sizes, and apply a page size to a layout..

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