Microsoft Excel Formatting Keyboard Shortcuts

Excel Keyboard ShortcutsAfter the popularity of our previous Microsoft Excel shortcut tutorial post we have decided to follow it up so you can be introduced to using keys for performing formatting. Hopefully you are now using your mouse far less after using our navigation shortcut guide. If not, be sure to have a run through of it first.

Many of these shortcuts can be used across many programs within the Microsoft Office suite, so they can be invaluable to learn in order to speed up your regular day to day tasks.

 ctrl +  Press these buttons together while selecting a cell to open the Format cells dialogue box
 ctrl +  Select a cell and press together to bold the contents
 ctrl +  Press together to make contents of selected cell(s) be formatted with italics.
 ctrl + u This will underline the contents of a cell(s). Pressing on content that is already underlined will remove the formatting
 ctrl + 5 Strikethrough text selected in the cell
 ctrl + shift + & Press these three keys together once you have selected cells to draw a boarder around them. Replace the & for a _ (underscore) to remove formatting
 alt + ' Press these together on a cell to view the Style pop up box
 ctrl + shift + f Brings up the Format Cells pop up window. From here you can control all of the cell’s formatting and through pressing shift and the directional arrow buttons you can navigate around without having to resort to using your mouse
 ctrl + ; Automatically enter today’s date into the selected cell
 ctrl + shift + ; Automatically enter the current time into the selected cell. Replace the ; with @ to automatically format the cell for date and time
 ctrl + a Select everything in the worksheet
 ctrl + ' If used below a cell with a formula in it this function will copy the formula into the selected cell
 ctrl + shift + + Brings up the Insert Cells dialogue box. From here you can shift existing cells around to fit in your new cells
 ctrl + z The all important undo command, great help for correcting an error
 ctrl + shift + $ Apply the cell you currently have selected with the Currency Format
 ctrl + shift + ^ Make the number in the cell selected be formatted as an Exponential number
 ctrl + shiftpercent Make the number in the cell selected to be formatted as a percentage

There are still plenty more short cuts to discover and make use of. Once you start using keyboard shortcuts more often you will notice a change in your overall user experience of Excel, making it possible to use the program for small tasks you otherwise might have thought about doing in an easier but less efficient or manageable way.

If you would really like to push your Microsoft Excel keyboard shortcut skills then you should take a look at Veodin KeyRocket; a small program that sits in the background and gives you prompts and reminders of shortcuts you could have used instead of using your mouse. It also tracks your progress, so you can measure how close you are getting to becoming an ultimate Excel Poweruser!


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Andy Trainer

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