How to Group Columns in Excel – Group Data in a Worksheet

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Do you have any idea how to group columns in Excel?

When it comes to grouping columns in Excel, you simply can merge one or more columns in a sheet. By using this feature, you can easily spread out or in the data. Whenever you are required to group columns, choosing two or more columns is mandatory. Once the column selection is done, you have to open the Data tab to choose the Outline section.

Grouping also gives you commands to show the required data that you want to display. Let’s see how you can group columns in Excel.

Manually Grouping Columns

To group columns manually, you can follow the steps given below:

  • Choose the columns you need to group.

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  • From the Ribbon menu, click on the Data tab and then choose the Outline option.
  • From this options menu, choose Group to merge columns. Continue this process until your required groups are not created.

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Once you are done with grouping columns, you can add another layer of grouping. Adding a new level of grouping will appear on the upper left side of the screen.

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You can simply repeat this process all over your sheet.

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How to Group Columns in Excel?

As already mentioned, this process is not difficult at all. You simply have to select the columns that needed to be grouped together. Also, keep in mind that you will not be able to group non-adjacent columns.

Drag the mouse cursor to choose the columns you want to group. Or else you can even select the first column by holding the SHIFT key and then choose the last column in the given range.

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Open the Data tab and click on the Outline drop-down menu given on the right side of the ribbon. Open the Group menu or select the Group drop-down arrow key.

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Now, you will be able to see the selected columns that you group in a line with a minus sign appearing beside each column. With the minus button, you can subside the group, and the subsequent plus sign button to spread out it.

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Furthermore, you will also note that buttons named 1 and 2 on the left side are useful to spread in or out of the group. Also, note that the number buttons will change by default when you add a subgroup to the sheet.

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Why Grouping Excel Columns is Recommended

Grouping columns together effectively lets you collapse or expand the sheet areas. Also, grouping is needed to minimize the estimations that many users might not need when working with Excel sheets.

The column needs to be grouped when you have to hide cells.

Column grouping is a great way when you have to make new sheets as a substitute. You can compose data in a better structure by grouping columns.

You can even set up the grouping level by grouping the columns together.

Why Excel Column Grouping Should be Avoided?

In the above section, you have learned about a few options that urge you to group columns. Let’s know about some points that stop you from grouping columns together.

Non-adjacent columns are not supposed to be added to a group.

In case, when you have multiple sheets and want to organize similar columns on several other sheets, it would be impossible to group columns.

You have to first recheck whether the data is sorted or not.

Whenever you intend to group columns, you have to check if the right columns are selected that need to be grouped.

Things to Remember

When you click on the minus sign button, it will hide the column by default, and plus sign button will automatically unhide it.

You should not choose some non-nearby columns.

By pressing the SHIFT + ALT + left arrow key, you can remove the grouping from the sheet.

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