Shortcut your way to Excel-Lence

12 May at 14:34

Getting bogged down in Excel? Our Keyboard Shortcuts could Ctrl-S your day! Feel free to check them out, and don’t forget to () to let us know how you got on.

Useful keyboard shortcuts

Using the keyboard to supplement your mouse-clicks can improve the speed and ease with which you use Excel.  The shortcuts might seem a little obscure at first, but keep this crib-sheet next to your PC, and you’ll soon find they become second nature.

Basic spreadsheet admin

  • Ctrl-S.  Saves the active spreadsheet.
  • Ctrl-P. Prints from the active Worksheet.  You can set up exactly what prints from the sheet, and how the page breaks fall – see Unit 32: Page & Print set up of the Excel with Business course).

Basic editing

  • Ctrl-C.  Copy selected cell(s) to the clipboard.
  • Ctrl-V.  Paste the clipboard contents into the selected cell(s).
  • Alt-E S V. An apparently abstruse one this, but useful.  ‘Pastes values’, that is replaces any formulas in the copied cells with their result.  Also called ‘hard pasting’.
  • F4 (function key) while editing a cell reference.  Toggles between relative & absolute cell references. See Unit 11: Cell references.
  • Ctrl-Z.  Undo the last edit.

Moving around a spreadsheet

    • Arrow keys ().  These move the selected cell one cell at a time in the arrow’s direction.
    • Return. Has the same effect as the down arrow (↓) – moves a cell down (although you can change this – see Unit 3: Customizing Excel).
    • Page up/down. This scrolls up/down by a ‘page’ – that is, by the height of the spreadsheet that is visible in the window.
    • Ctrl key plus arrow key (Ctrl ).  This moves the selected cell to the edge of the block of data the selection is on, or if it is not on a block of data to the start of the next one, or, if there are no more blocks of data, to the edge of the spreadsheet.
    • Shift + any of the above (e.g. Shift-Ctrl-) selects all the cells between the start and end point of the selection.
    • Ctrl + Page up/down. Moves between Worksheets in the active spreadsheet.


Excel with Business

This short lesson is a snippet from Excel with Business’s online Excel-training course – see for more details.