Tite's Brazil knew a win on Friday (AEDT) would book its spot at Qatar 2022 and the Selecao claimed the result they needed in hard-fought fashion on home soil.
Paqueta and Neymar combined for the decisive goal in the 72nd minute as CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying leader Brazil stayed unbeaten through 12 rounds.
Brazil entered the contest having never lost a game against Colombia in all their previous 13 meetings in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying (W6 D7). However, the Selecao had only won one of their last six games in this fixture.
It was a cagey start in Sao Paulo, where Brazil star Neymar was fortunate to escape punishment after getting into the face of referee Roberto Tobar.
The first half came to life during the closing stages as both teams had chances to open the scoring – Brazil finally got in behind Colombia and Danilo's cross deflected onto the post nine minutes before half-time.
Colombia star Luis Diaz then almost curled a stunning long-range effort into the back of the net three minutes later but it flashed just wide of the post, while Brazil's Marquinhos saw his header narrowly miss the far corner of the net on the stroke of half-time.
Like the opening 45 minutes, there was not much separating the two teams until Paqueta popped up to put Brazil ahead.
After Colombia failed to clear the ball properly, Brazil capitalised with 18 minutes remaining – Neymar playing a one-touch pass through to Paqueta, who managed to find a way past David Ospina in instinctive fashion.