by Cheryl Sklar
No matter how much we think we know in Excel, we can always benefit from others’ experiences and additional shortcuts. Here are a few quick and easy tips:
Automatically SUM() with ALT =
You can quickly add an entire row or column by clicking in the first empty cell at the end of that row or column. Press ALT = (equals key) to add the numbers in every cell to the left (or every cell above).
Logic for Number Formatting Keyboard Shortcuts
While many keyboard shortcuts seem random, there is usually logic behind them. If you look at the table below as an example, the Shift+4 key is how you get the dollar sign ($). So logically, CTRL + SHIFT + 4 will change formatting in that cell to a currency.
Repeat a Formula in Multiple Cells
(Thanks to our intern, Ben Norton, for this great tip.)
This trick populates all of the cells in a column with the same formula (so you don’t have to type the same formula over and over again), but it adjusts to use the data specific to each row.
Create the formula you need in the first cell. Then move your cursor to the lower right corner of that cell (you’ll see a little dot). When it turns into a plus sign, double click to copy that formula to the rest of the cells in that column. Each cell in the column will show the results of the formula using the data in that row.
Copy a Pattern of Numbers or Even Dates
I love this one – wow! Excel has the ability to recognize a pattern in your data, and allows you to automatically copy it to other cells. Simply enter information in two rows, which establishes the pattern. Then highlight those rows and drag down for as many cells as you want to populate. This works with numbers, days of the week or months.
Now that you’re getting back into the swing of things after the holidays, I hope these tips help you save some time in 2015. For more great Excel tips from our previous Tips, check out Alisa’s How to Excel in Excel and Richard’s Adding Rows and Columns in Excel Without Your Mouse. Here’s to a productive New Year!
Cheryl Sklar With over 26 years of experience in sales, marketing and general coordination, Cheryl uses her varied organizational skills to enhance the behind the scenes workings of Network 1. She strives to help things run smoothly wherever she can.
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Network 1 Consulting is a 17-year-old, IT Support company in Atlanta, GA. We become – or augment – the IT department for law firms and medical practices. Our IT experts can fix computers – but what our clients really value are the industry-specific best practices we bring to their firms. This is especially important with technology, along with regulations and cyber threats, changing so rapidly. We take a proactive approach to helping our clients use technology to gain and keep their competitive advantage.