15 of the Best Excel Shortcuts You Need to Know

Despite being around for over three decades, Microsoft Excel remains a powerful tool, especially when collating and analyzing information. Throughout the years, the application has been updated to newer versions, each coming with more functionalities and shortcuts.

Today there are several (300+) shortcuts that users can apply when working with the application. You can check out a comprehensive list of these excel shortcuts and tips. We know 300+ is an awful lot of them. Don’t worry, though – you only need to master about ten or so that will suffice. Below we’ve compiled a list of the most frequent and important shortcuts that will make your work on Excel easier.

Basic must-know Excel shortcuts

Let’s start with the most basic excel shortcuts for beginners learning about Excel. Note that the ‘+’ sign means pressing the keys simultaneously.

Ctrl + O Open a workbook
W Close a workbook
S Save your workbook
C Copy contents of a specific cell(s)
Z Undo the latest action performed
X Cut the contents of a specific cell(s)
P Bring up the print menu
V Paste the copied content into a specific cell(s)

Advanced Excel shortcuts

There are different advanced shortcuts as grouped below:

Shortcuts for formatting data

Ctrl + 1 Bring up the ‘format cells’ option
Shift + Colon Fill in the current time in a cell
Colon Insert the current date
Space Select an entire column

Viewing/navigating through data

Home Return to the first cell
Tab Move to the next cell
Ctrl +


F1 Hide/show the ribbon
Tab Move to the next open workbook
PgDn Move to the next worksheet
PgUp Return to the previous sheet
G Bring up the ‘Go to (& Reference)’ option
F Bring up the ‘Find (& Replace)’ option

Other shortcuts

Additional shortcuts when working with Excel include:

Ctrl + * Highlight an active range in the cell with the entire data area between the blank columns and rows
F2 Edit the working cell and set the insertion point at the end of the cell content
Ctrl + Y Redo an undo command
F6 Include the split panes as you switch between different areas in a split worksheet. Also, allows you to move between the worksheet, Zoom controls, ribbon , and task pane
F12 Quickly and directly bring up the ‘save as’ menu
Ctrl + Enter Insert the contents of the current entry into  the specific cell range
Ctrl + Alt + V Bring up the ‘Paste Special dialog’ menu
Shift + Spacebar Select an entire row for a function

The shortcuts above will help you work smart when using Excel. However, do not be in a hurry to apply all of them at once. Take some time to master them before using them where relevant.  You will not only save time but also have a smooth experience using the application. Keep in mind that some may not work with your Excel if you’re using an outdated version.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here