Excel Simple Shortcut Tips … to make “data-entry life” a little Easier!

March 15, 2017

When working with a program as intricate as Excel, things can become a little overwhelming. With the latest updates in Microsoft Office there is quite a bit for anyone to catch up on, especially a “newbie”. However, there are people out there (like us) to help! Here are a few of our favorite “shortcuts” to make your data-entry lives easier.


Select all

This shortcut feature is used when we want to “select all” the data on a worksheet to edit (i.e. make same font, make font bold, remove formats and so on…) or simply to just cut and paste. This might seem like a useless or boring feature but when time is working against you and your boss is yelling for the enormous data table you’ve been so frantically working on to now be all in the same font style and size, no underlining, no bold, etc. etc.; this easy excel feature can save the day! All you have to do is make sure the worksheet you need to edit is open front and center, click the small button highlighted below then let the magic happen. The entire worksheet will turn blue (unless you’ve customized your Microsoft Office theme). Once that happens, edit the worksheet accordingly and go make your boss happy!


Select few

Now let’s say you don’t want to select the entire workbook to edit but rather a few consecutive cells, rows or columns. There are a couple of ways to do this. The of the easiest ways is by clicking the first cell in the series you want to select and dragging the mouse out while the keeping your finger down on the right side of the mouse (this is with an external wired or wireless mouse). This action will highlight rows and columns simultaneously as you slide the mouse out.


An alternative method for accomplishing the same task mentioned above is by using “shift”+”arrow” keys. This would be ideal for laptop users who do not have an external mouse, especially for those who have difficulty using the built in mousepad. Many prefer this method (like when their external mouse suddenly goes missing) because it is much easier than trying to multitask with your fingers all over the mousepad. In order to avoid a hand cramp, simply click the first cell in the series that you need to edit then hold down the “shift” key and use the “arrow” keys to select the cells you want to edit.


What if you don’t need to select entire columns and rows, but rather a few select cells to edit all at once instead of individually editing the cells one-by-one? Well there’s a shortcut for that too! Click on the first cell you want to edit in the series. Then with your finger on the “Ctrl” button, click all the cells you want to edit. They will turn blue (again assuming you have not customized the theme of your version of Excel) as you click on the next cell in the series you want to edit. Once you are done selecting cells just simply take your finger off the “Ctrl” button and edit away (be careful to not click on another cell without holding down the “Ctrl” button or all highlighted cells will un-highlight)!




Stay connected with us monthly for future articles and for more helpful Excel Tips. We hope these tips help make your work go by faster, your day more enjoyable, and make “data-entry life” a little easier!

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