Join Chris Grover for an in-depth discussion in this video Grouping data in outlines, part of Learn Excel 2010: The Basics.
Sure it's good to have all that detail behind your numbers. But sometimes, less tells more of the story. When your data fits neatly into groups you can use outlines to show and hide as much as you want. Here's how it works. We've got a spreadsheet here that shows sales and expenses, and then calculates whether there's a profit or a loss, and it keeps track of the information each month and then totals it for the quarters. Well, sometimes you may want to just see the quarters and you don't really need to see the monthly detail of this. So, the thing to do is to go to your Data Tab, look over here in the outline group where we have the group commands.
So what we're going to do is select three columns for the three months, January, February, and March, and we're going to group them, and when we do that you can see that there's a bar above the group. And it's got this little minus button on it right now. When I click that, it hides the group, and all we see is the quarter, and it turns into a plus button. And I can click that to expand it again. So, when you do that for something like this you probably want to do it for all of the columns.
So we select our columns and then click Group, and, you want to click in the top here where the letters are to select the columns. Now we have four groups, one for each quarter, and we can show and hide them, as we want to, or we can use the buttons over here. One stands for the first level of the group, and two stands for the second level of the group. And if we wanted to put groups inside of groups, we could do that as well. You can go down to eight levels of groups nested inside of other groups in this organization.
The other thing that you can do is you can group rows as well as columns. We're looking at grouping columns over here, but here's another work sheet that is grouping rows. And what we've got here is we have products, we have books magazines, DVDs and music, are the major groups, and the sub data inside of it are locations where these are stored. Locations, Mission Boulevard, Main Street and Fourth Street. So we can see all of the books and all the detail where they're sold, or we can hide the location detail, and just see the totals for each of these items that we're selling. Now there may come a time where you want to remove a group, and let's go back to our original worksheet here.
So say we decide we don't need groups here anymore. The thing to do here is to select the group, and then click the Ungroup button and then it disappears. You can do that individually or you can select a whole bunch of them at once, and click Ungroup and they'll go away. So in this lesson you learned how to group your data so that you can show and hide it using the outline totals. You saw that you can group both columns and rows of data, and you saw how to ungroup your data if you don't want it in a group any longer.
- Understanding Excel and its user interface
- Getting started with basic tasks
- Developing your spreadsheet
- Creating more complex formulas
- Making changes to your workbook
- Visualizing your data with color, charts, and graphics
- Analyzing data
- Printing and sharing your worksheet