basic formatting in excel

Formatting Cells

You can change the appearance of a cell without changing the actual data by simply formatting it. Formatting lends a professional look to the worksheet and also makes specific data stand out so the user can interpret it easily.

There are various types of formatting that can be applied to a cell. Number, font, border and alignment are some of the formatting types that can be used. When you enter a value into a cell, Excel uses a default format. To apply the Number format, you can use the “Format Cells” option. Right click on the cell in which you have entered the data and select “Format Cells.” In the dialog box that opens, select the Number tab. If you want to change your data into a currency format, select the “Currency” option in the Number tab and click on “OK.”

In the “Home” tab, you can also use the alignment group to align the data and the number or the border group to add a border to that particular cell. If you click on the Percentage symbol in the Number group, you can apply a Percentage format to the data. In Microsoft Word, you can change the font or color of your data by using the Font group.

Graphs and Charts

Excel can also be used to create different types of graphs and charts such as line graphs, pie charts, bar graphs, etc.

To create a graph, you first need to make sure that all your data is in the Excel worksheet. Arrange your data into two columns, one X and the other Y. Once you know that you have all your data, you need to choose the type of chart you want to create. Click on the “Charts” option in the “Insert” tab and click on the type of chart you intend to create (column, bar, line pie, area, scatter and others). You also have the option to choose between a 3D graph and a 2D graph. Excel then shows your data in the form of a graph. You can tweak the two axes by right clicking on the axis and choosing the “Format Axis” option.


Microsoft Excel is available in all MS Office versions we offer including Office 2010, 2011 for Mac, Office 2013, Office 365, and Office 2016. >Click here to buy!<

Image credit: Nicholas Wang/Flickr