Excel’s two main functions are to allow you to manage and view data from different perspectives, and one of the program’s simpler but powerful tools for this is the sort function.
Whether it’s simple ascending / descending sorting, multi-variable sorting to display data in groups or to maintain row integrity, or simple alphanumeric sorts to organize tabular data, sorting data in Excel is an essential skill.
Few programs are better suited for sorting tabular data than Excel, and your sorts can range from simple and relatively uncomplicated to very complex. While Excel’s sorting prowess – something you can do with the right dataset and a little knowledge of the inner workings of the program – is indeed robust and comprehensive, today’s technical advice focuses on two main types of sorts, namely
- Sorting data by one column
- Sorting data by several columns
Spreadsheets, of course, are made up of columns and rows of cells or tabular data, where each column contains a logical division of facts, numbers, or any other detail into categories, such as names, addresses, currency, parts. numbers, etc. – depending on the type of spreadsheet. On the other hand, rows represent people, objects, or shapes side by side or in the same instance or occurrence.
Depending on the type of spreadsheet and the data it contains, such as a tabular list of names, addresses, phone numbers, and other relevant data, rows are often similar to database records.
When you sort rows of data, each row must maintain its integrity, without inadvertently moving data from one row to another, which, as you will see below, is useful when sorting data across multiple columns.
Sort on one field
You can sort the records in your spreadsheet by row, and you can sort cells in the records by column. Of course, you can specify ascending or descending sort order. By default, in ascending / alphanumeric order, the program orders text from A to Z and numbers from lowest to highest. When sorting with a descending sort order, of course, the older one changes from Z to A , or so that the larger numbers start at the top.
As with many Excel functions, there are several ways to perform a simple sort; However, all you need for this type of sort is in the right-click pop-up menu as shown below.
- Right-click the field in the column by which you want to sort the spreadsheet to open the pop-up menu.
- Scroll down and hover over Sort to open a pop-up menu.
- Click Sort A to Z Ascending or Sort Z to A Descending (note that Excel does not include data in cells in row 1 when sorting; the program assumes that this row contains labels columns or headers.).
This simple sort works for many types of data, except when your rows and columns have identical or duplicate data. In these cases, you must sort by two or more columns, which will be next.
Sort records in multiple fields
Depending on the complexity of your data, you may need to sort by more than one column. Perhaps the best example is sorting the database alphabetically by last name. Let’s say there are several people in your data with the same last name. In these cases, you need to make sure that Linda Johnson appears in front of Lydia Johnson and Cherry Anderson appears after Charles Anderson You get the idea.
You can set up a custom search with multiple criteria in the Sort dialog box like this.
- Click a cell in the first column of the data you want to sort.
- Click Data just below the title bar to open the data feed. (The Ribbon is, of course, a series of contextual tabs at the top of the application window.)
- Under Sort & Filter, click the Sort button to open the Sort dialog box. Li>
Clicking in the Sort dialog box opens several different options for changing the sort, although some of them, if you are not sure exactly how each affects the sort, are likely to lead to unwanted results.
- Click OK.
- If a sort warning dialog box appears, select Expand Selection and click Sort.
In addition, when you select a column, Excel analyzes the contents of the cells in that column and makes educated guesses about which values ??should populate the Sort and Order fields. Unless you have a specific (and logical) reason for changing them, then don’t. (Unless you’re experimenting, of course. I always support that – and Excel’s undo function works great.)
As you can imagine, this is just the beginning of how you can sort data in Excel. However, it is important to remember that if you are not careful, using the wrong parameters can cause your data to collide and completely change its position in the table. Sorting is quick and easy. The good news is that Undo is fast too. Don’t be afraid to cancel and try again. And again.