Grouping Cells in Excel – Different Ways to Sort Out Data

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Microsoft Excel lets you sort data using one or more cells in a spreadsheet. Grouping cells in Excel gives you a chance to have visuals to clear data. Not only this, but you can even make some changes in the outline as per your needs. When you need to make a truly defined data sheet, grouping comes in.

With Excel, it will be easier to group data into multiple categories so that you can read data conveniently. Here in this post, you will get to know some useful methods that help in grouping cells in Excel. Let’s dive in:

Sometimes when your spreadsheet is full of information, it could be challenging to organize data for better understanding. With a list of data, you can easily manage to wrap it up.

Below you will find a dataset containing product B, the name of some product brands in column C, and sales in January, February, and March in columns D, E, and F. In column G, you can see the net sale of all products. Suppose that the individual sales in individual months are unwanted information for us and we don’t want to have the sales for separate brands as well.

So, how would it happen? Do you have any idea? We’ll group the data separately that we don’t need.

Grouping Cells in Excel Using Group Feature

Using the group feature, you can hide some cells and icons from your sheet so that they are not visible to you. The group feature lets you group cells by following the steps given below:

  1. First of all, select the data that needed to be grouped. Here we’ll select the data cells from columns D, E, and F.
  2. From the ribbon, click on the Data tab and then choose the Group drop-down menu.
  3. Now, in the outline toolbar click on the option Group.

  1. Right after this step, you will see a minus sign added to the outline above the selected cells. Using this sign, we will group the cells.
  2. Considering the above data, now suppose we need to group the cells from rows 5, 6, 7, and 8. Select cells from these rows.
  3. Moreover, open the Data tab from the Excel toolbar and choose the Group option.

  1. Here we go. Whenever you need to hide cells you can easily manage to do this because these cells are grouped now.

Apply Subtotal Command to Group Cells

Using the Excel subtotal feature helps in the data analysis. It also helps in making groups and then further uses them for sum, average, and other functions on the grouped cells. Below we have some easy-to-follow steps:

  1. Select the entire sheet by clicking on the green triangle given at the top of the left side.
  2. Now, open the Data tab from the ribbon.
  3. Later on, choose the Subtotal option given under the Outline section.

  1. You will see an Excel pop-up window appears. Click on the OK button.
  2. Now, you can see the Subtotal dialog box and then choose the columns you need to group.
  3. Click OK.

  1. Following this step will make new rows after each product and that will be the net sale for each month.
  2. The cells on the left side of your sheet are now grouped.

Keyboard Shortcuts to Group Cells in Excel

Most of the time, people don’t want to be a part of lengthy steps that’s why they prefer trying keyboard shortcuts that are helpful in every way. It also helps in increasing the level of productivity. For grouping cells in Excel, we can use keyboard shortcuts. For this, follow the steps:

  1. First, choose the cells that needed to be grouped. Here we will select columns D, E, and F.
  2. Press the Shift + Alt + Right Arrow keys from the keyboard.
  3. That’s it. Your cells are now grouped.

Summing Up

Now, you are fully aware of the methods that help in grouping cells in Excel. Try any of the above-mentioned methods because each method has its own significance. Also, share these methods with others so that you can be a part of spreading the knowledge thread.


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