Excel Shortcuts

Every computer user in this world knows that Excel is a most important software that they use as part of their work irrespective of the nature of work. It is equally important for us to know the short-cut keys to improve our productivity in working with Excel. This article lists out 15 most important keyboard short-cut keys (Windows OS) for using Microsoft Excel in our day-to-day work.I have shared the snap shot of the list of short-cuts explained in this article, for your quick note.

Shortcut Summary

 1. Line Breaks In Cell

Line Break


Press the Alt (&) Enter keys to insert a line break inside a cell as shown in this picture. 

2. Select Only Visible Cells

The key combination Alt (&) ; comes handy to select only visible cells/rows/columns, when we have some hidden columns or rows in between.  

3. Fill Down

Use Cntrl (&) D, to fill a cell's with that of the one that is immediately above it. This avoids the over head of copying and pasting the contents again. To fill the contents of the immediate left cell, use the short-cut Cntrl (&) R.  

4. Open Format Cells Dialog

To format contents of a cell, mostly we use to do a right mouse click and then select format cells. We can do the same by simply pressing Cntrl (&) 1. 

5. Edit Cell

To edit the current cell, press the function key - F2. This is the most widely used shortcut key. 

6. Find Next

To find a text inside a sheet, we can use the short-cut Cntrl (&) F. If we need to find the next matching content, we need to click the Find Next button in the Find dialog. Sometimes the dialog will hide the matching content that is being found and highlighted. To avoid this, after using the short-cut to find a text, close the find dialog and then just press Shift (&) F4 to find the next matching content. Please note that F4 is a function key. 

7. Insert/Edit Comment

Inserting comments or editing an existing comment in a cell as easy as pressing Shift (&) F2. 

8. Turn On/Off Filters

To analyse a big chunk of data, we use to create filters. To turn on filter in a sheet, just press Cntrl (&) Shift (&) L and to turn off the filters, press the same key combination again. This particular short-cut key will save us a lot of time especially during data analysis. 

9. View Dropdown Content

Once the filters are applied, we use to expand the filter on a column to view its contents or to select a filter criteria. If we have data validation dropdown enabled on a cell, we need to mouse click the drop down icon to enter the data. This hassle is avoided by simply using the combination Alt (&) Down Arrow. 

10. Select Till Last Non-blank Row/Column

We end up in scenarios where we need to select and copy the data till the last column or last row. Use the option Cntrl (&) Shift (&) Down Arrow, to select data till the last non-blank row or by using Cntrl (&) Shift (&) Right Arrow to select data till the last non-blank column in a row. 

11. Paste Special:

Paste SpecialWe need to use paste special option, when we need to just paste only the values, formats, formulas or comments from the copied content. This option is widely used to copy a list of rows from a sheet and paste the rows as list of columns in another sheet. To do this, we normally use the Transpose option in paste special dialog. This option is much required and widely used by advanced excel users, which could be achieved using the key combination Cntrl (&) Alt (&) V. 

12. Select Entire Row

To select an entire row use the short-cut keys - Shift (&) Space bar. This comes handy to select entire row, before inserting a new row or to copy the entire row. 

13. Select Entire Column

To select an entire column using the short-cut keys - Cntrl (&) Space bar. This comes handy to select entire column, before inserting a new column or to apply a filter on a column. 

14. Insert New Row/Column

After selecting an entire row or column, use Cntrl (&) + to insert a new row or column. You must use the + button in the number pad section. If you would like to use the + button near P, the use the combination Cntrl (&) Shift (&) +. To delete rows or columns, use minus in the place of plus. 

15. Navigate Between Worksheets

To navigate between different work sheets within an Excel, use the option Cntrl (&) Page Down or Cntrl (&) Page Up. 

These 15 shortcut keys and 76 Excel tips and tricks has helped me a lot in boosting up my productivity. If you enjoyed reading this article, share it with your friends using the social media sharing icons in this page.