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Excel Shortcut Keys

MS Excel is a widely used spreadsheet software, and most people are quite familiar with working on it. Since it is a powerful software and has been around for a long time, it has several advanced features. One of such features is the use of shortcut keys in Excel. By using excel shortcut keys, we can undoubtedly speed up our working process and further increase the overall productivity of the work process.

In this article, we are discussing the wide range of shortcuts that can be used in Excel and make things more convenient. Since excel has a pretty long list of shortcuts, we have summarized most of the general shortcuts in different categories. This also helps us remember most of the shortcuts. One advantage of memorizing these excel shortcut keys is that they are compatible with almost every version of Excel we are using on the Windows platform.

Before discussing the shortcuts, let us discuss some fundamental concepts of shortcuts so that we can understand them efficiently:

  • When there is a use of plus sign (+) in a shortcut key combination, we must press multiple keys simultaneously. For instance, if a shortcut key to print any document is Ctrl + P, we need to press the 'Ctrl' key and the 'P' key together.
  • When there is a comma sign (,) in a shortcut key combination, we must press multiple keys in order. For instance, if we are given a shortcut key combination as Alt + H, A, C, we are first required to press the 'Alt' key and 'H' together, then release those keys and press A and C one after another.
  • When there is a use of function key (such as F1, F2, F3…..F12) in a shortcut key combination, we must first activate function keys by pressing the 'Fn' button from the keyboard and then try the corresponding shortcut. For some keyboards, it may not be necessary.
Excel Shortcut Keys

Keyboard shortcuts are essential alternatives to using a touchscreen or a mouse. Let us now come directly to the table of Excel shortcut keys, which also include their actions/ uses:

General Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes the shortcuts that are most commonly used in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
F1 To Launch a Help Pane
Ctrl + A Select All
Ctrl + B To apply/ remove Bold from the selection
Ctrl + I To apply/ remove Italic from the selection
Ctrl + U To apply/ remove the underscore from the selection
Ctrl + C To copy selection
Ctrl + V To paste content from the clipboard
Ctrl + Alt + V To launch the 'Paste Special' window
Ctrl + X To cut the selection
Ctrl + Z To undo the changes/ action
Ctrl + Y To redo the changes/ action
Ctrl + D To duplicate the object, text, or formula
Ctrl + P To print a Workbook
Ctrl + F To launch the 'Find and Replace' window with the Find tab selected
Ctrl + H To launch the 'Find and Replace' window with Replace tab selected
Ctrl + W To close a Workbook
Ctrl + F4 To close Excel
Ctrl + F2 To switch to print preview
F4 To repeat the last action/ command
F12 To launch the 'Save As' command
F7 To check the spelling
Alt/ F10 To turn the key tips On/ Off
Ctrl + Shift + U Expand/ Collapse the formula bar
F11 To insert a bar chart as per the selection (on a new sheet)
Alt + F1 To insert an embedded bar chart as per the selection (on the current sheet)
Ctrl + Shift + F4 To find a previous match (after initial Find)
Shift + F4 To find the next match (after initial Find)
Ctrl + Shift + L To toggle the Autofilter
Alt + ↓ To activate the filter
Ctrl + T or Ctrl + L To insert the table
Shift + Space To select the table row
Ctrl + Space To select the table column
Ctrl + A (when active cell is in table) To select the entire table
Alt + C To clear the slicer filter
Shift + F7 To launch the Thesaurus
Alt + F8 To launch a Macro dialog box
Alt + F11 To launch VBA Editor
Ctrl + 6 To show/ hide objects such as images, watermarks, etc.
Alt + ' To launch the 'Modify Cell Style' window
Shift + F10 To display the mouse, right-click menu options
Alt + Space To show Control menu options
Alt + F To display the 'File' tab options
Alt + H To display the 'Home' tab options
Alt + N To display the 'Insert' tab options
Alt + P To display the 'Page Layout' tab options
Alt + M To display the 'Formulas' tab options
Alt + A To display the 'Data' tab options
Alt + R To display the 'Review' tab options
Alt + W To display the 'View' tab options
Alt + L To display the 'Developer' tab options
Shift + F3 To insert a function

Worksheet Related Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes the shortcuts that are most commonly used to perform worksheet (commonly called sheets) tasks in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Shift + F11 To add a new worksheet
Ctrl + PgUp To go to the previous worksheet
Ctrl + PgDn To go to the next worksheet
Alt + E, L To delete the current worksheet
Alt + O, H, R To rename the current worksheet
Alt + E, M To move the current worksheet
F6 OR Shift + F6 To move the selection between the ribbon, task pane, worksheet, and zoom controls in splatted worksheets
Ctrl + Shift + PgUp/ PgDn To select the adjacent worksheets
ScrLk To toggle the scroll lock
Ctrl + Shift + F1 To toggle full-screen view
Alt + P, R, S To set the print area for the worksheet
Ctrl + F2 To view the print preview of the worksheet
Alt + P, R, C To clear the print area
Ctrl + Mouse Wheel Up To perform zoom in
Ctrl + Mouse Wheel Down To perform zoom out
Alt + R, P, S To protect the sheet

Workbook Related Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to the workbook in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + N To create a new Workbook
Ctrl + O To open an existing Workbook from the local storage
Ctrl +S To save a Workbook
Ctrl + Tab To go to the next workbook
Ctrl + Shift + Tab To go to the previous workbook
Ctrl + F9 To minimize the current workbook window
Ctrl + F10 To maximize the current workbook window
Ctrl + F4 To close the current workbook
Alt + F4 To close the Excel

Ribbon Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes the shortcuts that are most commonly used to perform tasks related to Ribbon in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + F1 To expand/ collapse the ribbon
Alt To activate the access keys
→ ← ↑ ↓ To move through tabs and groups in ribbon
Space / Enter To activate or open the selected control
Enter To confirm control changes
F1 To get help on the selected control

Drag/ Drop Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes the shortcuts that are most commonly used to perform drag/ drop tasks in Excel after the cells have been selected:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Drag To drag and cut
Ctrl + Drag To drag and copy
Shift + Drag To drag and insert
Ctrl + Shift + Drag To drag and insert the copy
Alt +Drag To drag to worksheet
Ctrl + Drag To drag to duplicate the worksheet

Navigation Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform tasks related to navigation in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
To move to the right side of the active cell
To move to the left side of the active cell
To move to the one cell upside
To move to the one cell downside
Alt + PgDn To move one screen to the right side
Alt + PgUp To move one screen to the left side
PgUp To move one screen up
PgUp To move one screen down
Ctrl + → To move to the right edge (last cell in the corresponding row) of the data region
Ctrl + ← To move to the left edge (Initial cell in the corresponding row) of the data region
Ctrl + ↑ To move to the top edge (Initial cell in the corresponding column) of the data region
Ctrl + ↓ To move to the bottom edge (last cell in the corresponding column) of the data region
Home To move to the beginning of the current row
Ctrl + End To move to the last cell of the current worksheet containing the data
Ctrl + Home To move to the first cell of the current worksheet
End To turn On/ Off End mode

Active Cell Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform tasks when there is an active cell in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Shift + Backspace To select the active cell (when several cells are already selected)
Ctrl + Backspace To display the active cell on a worksheet
Ctrl + . To move the active cell clockwise to the corners of the selection
Enter To move active cell down in the selection/ wrap to the next column
Shift + Enter To move active cell up in the selection/ wrap to the previous column
Tab To move the active cell right in a selection/ wrap to the next row
Shift + Tab To move the active cell left in a selection/ wrap to the previous row

Selection Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform selection tasks in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Shift + Space To select the entire row
Ctrl + Space To select the entire column
Ctrl + A To select the current region when the worksheet includes data. Pressing again helps to select the current region and the summary rows. Pressing again helps to select the entire worksheet.
Shift + Click To expand the selection
Ctrl + Click To add non-adjacent cells to the selection
Ctrl + Alt + → To move to the right side between non-adjacent selections
Ctrl + Alt + ← To move to the left side between the adjacent selections
Shift +F8 To toggle 'Add to Selection' mode
Esc To exit 'Add to Selection' mode

Extend Selection Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform extending selection tasks in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Shift + → To extend the selection to the right side
Shift + ← To extend the selection to the left side
Shift + ↑ To extend the selection to the upside direction
Shift + ↓ To extend the selection down
Ctrl +Shift + → To extend the selection to the last cell to the right side that includes data, or to the next cell containing the data, or to the last column
Ctrl + Shift + ← To extend the selection to the last cell to the left side that includes data, or to the next cell containing the data, or to the first column
Ctrl + Shift + ↑ To extend the selection to the last cell to the upside direction that includes data, or to the next cell containing the data, or to the first row
Ctrl + Shift + ↓ To extend the selection to the last cell to the bottom side that includes data, or to the next cell containing the data, or to the last row
Shift + PgUp To extend the selection, one screen upside
Shift + PgDn To extend the selection one screen downside
Alt +Shift + PgDn To extend the selection one screen right side
Alt + Shift + PgUp To extend the selection, one screen left side
Shift + Home To extend the selection to the beginning of the row/s
Ctrl + Shift + Home To extend the selection to the first cell in a worksheet
Ctrl + Shift + End To extend the selection to the last cell in a worksheet
F8 To toggle the 'Extend Selection' mode
Esc To cancel the 'Extend Selection' mode

Select Special Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform special selection tasks in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + G OR F5 To show 'Go To' dialog window
Ctrl + Shift + O To select cells with comments
Ctrl + Shift + * To select the region around the active cell
Ctrl + A To select the current region
Ctrl + [ To select the direct precedents
Ctrl + Shift + { To select all precedents
Ctrl + ] To select the direct dependents
Ctrl + Shift + } To select all dependents
Alt + ; To select the visible cells only

Cell Edit Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform tasks related to editing the cell in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
F2 To edit the current cell
Shift + F2 To insert/ edit comment
Shift + F10, M To remove/ delete comment
Esc To cancel the editing mode
Shift + → To select the one character on the right side, pressing →multiple times can select more characters right
Shift + ← To select the one character on the left side, pressing ←multiple times can select more character left
Ctrl + → To move the pointer one word right, pressing → multiple times can move further to the right
Ctrl + ← To move the pointer one word left, pressing ←multiple times can move further to the left
Ctrl + Shift + → To select the one word on the right side, pressing → multiple times can select more words to the right
Ctrl + Shift + ← To select the one word on the left side, pressing ←multiple times can select more words to the left
Shift + Home To select all the characters from the current pointer position to the beginning of the current cell
Shift + End To select all the characters from the current pointer position to the end of the current cell
Ctrl + Delete To delete all the characters from the current pointer position to the end of the line in the current cell
Delete To delete the character to the right side of the pointer position
Backspace To delete the character to the left side of the pointer position
Alt + Enter To start a new line in the current cell

Entering Data Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to entering the data in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Enter To enter the data and move to the next/ down cell
Enter (after copying, selecting cell/s, then pressing) To enter the copied data in all the selected cells
Shift + Enter To enter the data and go to the above cell
Tab To enter the data and go to the right cell
Shift + Tab To enter the data and go to the left cell
Ctrl + Enter To enter the data and remain in the current cell
Ctrl + ; To add the current date
Ctrl + Shift + : To add the current time
Ctrl + D To fill the data into down cell/s from the cell above
Ctrl + R To fill the data into right cell/s from the cell on left
Ctrl + ' To duplicate the formula from the above cell (the formula is the exact copy)
Ctrl + Shift + " To duplicate the value from the above cell
Ctrl + E To flash fill
Ctrl + K To insert a hyperlink
Alt + ↓ To show an AutoComplete list

Formatting Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to the regular formatting in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + 1 To format cells
Ctrl + Shift + F To show 'Format Cells' with the Font tab selected
Ctrl + 5 To apply/ remove strikethrough from the selection
Alt + H, A, L To align the content left side
Alt + H, A, C To align center
Alt + H, A, R To align the content right side
Alt + H, 6 To insert Indent
Alt + H, 5 To remove Indent
Alt + H, W To wrap text
Alt + H, A, T To align top
Alt + H, A, B To align bottom
Alt + H, A, M To align middle
Alt + H, F, G To increase the font size one step
Alt + H, F, K To decrease the font size one step

Number Formatting Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to the number formatting in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + Shift + ~ To apply general format
Ctrl + Shift + ! To apply number format (with decimals)
Ctrl + Shift + @ To apply time format
Ctrl + Shift + # To apply a date format
Ctrl + Shift + $ To apply currency format
Ctrl + Shift + % To apply percentage format
Ctrl + Shift + ^ To apply scientific format

Borders Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to the border in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Alt + H, B To launch a list of border styles from the ribbon
Ctrl + Shift + & To insert a border around the selected cells
Alt + H, B, R To add/ remove the right side border
Alt + H, B, L To add/ remove the left side border
Alt + H, B, P To add/ remove the top side border
Alt + H, B, O To add/ remove the bottom side border
Alt + H, B, A To add all side borders to all the selected cells
Ctrl + Shift + - (minus sign button on the keyboard) To delete the borders from the selection

Formulas Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that can be used to perform tasks related to formula/ formulae in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
= OR + To start entering the formula
F4 To toggle between absolute and relative references (in a cell edit mode)
Shift + F3 To launch the 'Insert Function' dialog window
Alt + = To perform Autosum
Ctrl + ` To toggle showing formulas On/ Off
Ctrl + Shift + A To insert function arguments
Ctrl + Shift + Enter To enter an array formula
F9 To calculate worksheets
Shift + F9 To calculate the active worksheets
Ctrl + Alt + F9 To force calculate all the worksheets
F9 To evaluate part of a formula (in a cell edit mode)
Ctrl + Shift + U To expand / Collapse the formula bar
Ctrl + A To show function arguments dialog window
Ctrl + F3 To open the name manager mode
Ctrl + Shift + F3 To create a name from the values in row(s) or column(s)
F3 To paste a name into the formula
Tab To accept the function with auto-complete

Rows and Columns Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that help to perform tasks related to rows and columns in Excel:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Ctrl + + (plus sign button on keyboard) To launch an Insert Dialog Box for rows and columns
Ctrl + - (minus sign button on keyboard) To launch Delete Dialog Box for rows and columns
Delete To completely delete the contents of the selection
Ctrl + 0 To hide the entire column where a cell is selected
Ctrl + 9 To hide the entire row where a cell is selected
Ctrl + Shift + 0 To unhide columns
Ctrl + Shift + 9 To unhide rows
Alt + Shift + → To group rows/ columns (with rows or columns selected)
Alt + Shift + ← To ungroup rows/ columns (with rows or columns selected)
Ctrl + 8 To hide/ show outline symbols

Pivot Tables Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that are used to perform pivot table-related tasks:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Alt + N, V To create a Pivot table
Ctrl + A (when the cursor inside the pivot table) To select the entire Pivot table
Alt + Shift + → To group Pivot table items
Alt + Shift + ← To ungroup Pivot table items
Ctrl + - (minus sign button on keyboard) To hide or filter out the pivot table items
Alt + H, S, C To unhide or clear filter on pivot table items
Alt + N, S, Z, C To insert the pivot chart

Dialog Boxes Excel Shortcut Keys

This category includes Excel shortcut keys that only work when there is an open dialog box:

Shortcut Key/s Action
Tab To move to the next control
Shift + Tab To move to the previous control
Ctrl + Tab To move to the next tab
Ctrl + Shift + Tab To move to the previous tab
Enter To accept and apply the changes
Space To check and uncheck the boxes
Esc To cancel and close the dialog box

VBA (Visual Basic Editor) Excel Shortcut Keys

As Excel provides VBA editor support to use advanced features, we can use the following shortcut keys and increase overall productivity. However, these shortcuts must be used when the VBA editor is opened.

Shortcut Key/s Action
F2 To view Object Browser
F4 To open the properties window
F5 To run Sub/ Form or Run Macro
F6 To switch to split windows
F7 To view code Window
F9 To toggle Breakpoint
F10 To activate the menu bar
Shift + F2 To view the definition
Shift + F7 To view the object
Shift + F10 To display the right-click menu options
Alt + F4 To close VBE
Alt + F6 To switch between the previous two Windows
Alt + F11 To return to the Application
Ctrl + Shift + F2 To go to the last position
Ctrl + Shift + F8 To step out
Ctrl + Shift + F9 To clear all the Breakpoints
Insert To toggle insert mode
Home To move to the beginning of the line
End To move to the end of the line
Enter To insert a new line
Shift + Insert To paste the content from the clipboard
Alt + Spacebar To display the System menu
Alt + Tab To cycle between applications
Alt + Backspace To undo the changes
Ctrl + E To export module
Ctrl + I To turn On quick info
Ctrl + J To list properties/ methods
Ctrl + L To display the call stack
Ctrl + M To import a file
Ctrl + N To add a new line
Ctrl + R To launch project explorer
Ctrl + T To show available components
Ctrl + Y To cut the entire line
Ctrl + Insert To copy contents
Ctrl + Delete To delete to the last of the word
Ctrl + Home To go to the top of the module
Ctrl + End To go to the end of the module
Ctrl + Left Arrow To move one word to the left
Ctrl + Right Arrow To move one word to the right
Ctrl + Up Arrow To move to the previous procedure
Ctrl + Down Arrow To move to the next procedure
Ctrl + Spacebar To complete the word
Ctrl + Tab To cycle windows
Ctrl + Backspace To delete to the start of the word
Ctrl + Shift + I To view parameter info
Ctrl + Shift + J To list constants





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