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The Most Useful Excel Tricks for Beginners

Excel workbook

Microsoft Excel can seem complicated. There are all these functions and formulas, boxes and options and when you just want to make a simple business account spreadsheet, it can seem like too much. The key is to focus on the most useful Excel tricks for beginners and master them to feel more at home on the software. Here are some simple hints and tips so you can get to grips with Excel in no time.

Simple shortcuts

Excel has loads of built-in shortcuts that let you do things with the press of a couple of buttons or mouse clicks, rather than needing to constantly be in the menu. Here are a few to get started.

One click select all

CTRL + A is one way to select an entire document but with Excel, there is also another option. If you click the corner button at the top of the sheet with the triangle in it, this will select all of the sheets in a second.

Shift between files

If you have more than one Excel file open, you can easily switch between them by using CTRL + Tab. You can also use the same shortcut to move between different tabs in Windows Explorer when you are searching the internet.

Add a new shortcut

If there’s something that you use a lot, you can create your own shortcut to add to the top menu. Normally there are three things there – Save, Undo and Repeat Typing. But you can add anything you want by going to File > Options > Quick Access Toolbar and selecting there the shortcuts you want to add so you can spend more time on analysing your Excel data.

Working with Excel

Shortcuts and quick fixes aren’t just restricted to high level stuff like opening files either. There are lots of easy ways to do simple tasks while working with Excel.

Add a diagonal line

Adding a diagonal line to a cell can help break up data. The feature to do this is found in the same place as the option to add a border around a cell in Home > Font > Borders. As well as the options to add a border, you can also add a diagonal line left to right or right to left.

Quickly move or copy data

Selecting all is great but sometimes you only want a section that you move or copy. Here, select the data you want then press CTRL and drag the content to where you want it to go. All the data will be copied, and you can delete the original if you don’t need it.

Remove blank cells

When you remove data, the cells remain so you want a quick way to remove those blank cells and tidy things up. Here, select the column with the blank cells and go to Data > Filter the select ‘blanks’. This will highlight all blank cells and you can simply hit delete to remove them entirely.

Simplified Excel

These are just a few of the basics you will learn when you do Excel training that cut down on the time needed to do simple tasks and ensure you focus on the work needed, not the how to do it.

Elliott Training offers an extensive range of Excel training courses for individuals or businesses, so you can realise the full potential of the spreadsheet. For more information about our courses, you can speak to us on 01454 203355 or use our contact form and we will get back to you.

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