Insert and Delete rows and columns Excel 2013

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Inserting and deleting rows and columns

We're reviewing the worksheet called Insert-Delete within the file 05-Layout, and we need to add a new column, a Phone Number column between Columns C and D. When you insert columns in Excel, select the column to the right of where the new column is going to appear. Now, using the standard menu techniques we can go on the Home tab to the Cells Group and choose Insert and simply Insert Sheet Columns; and we automatically get a new column to the left. All the other data gets pushed to the right.

And so I'll put in our Phone Number heading here and then eventually we'll fill in the details. We can also insert rows in a similar way. It's often going to be handier to use the right mouse button. Suppose we also need to add a Social Security column, we could right-click Column D and simply choose Insert. Notice that it doesn't say Columns but by implication that's what it means because we've right-clicked on a column-- Insert, and there's a new column--and eventually maybe we'll put in a Social Security Number. Now, sometimes when you're inserting data, you have to consider what is already there.

And if we wanted to put in Pennsylvania here in this list, what about the fact that we've got formulas right there that are adding up these numbers? Should we put Pennsylvania (PA) at the bottom here and move these down first, that sort of thing? Well, we could, but it's going to be simpler here to essentially take this data and insert new cells above it. Now, we could insert a new row, but if we look at the data to the left, we really don't want a new row in the middle of that TaxTable, nor do we want a new row in the midst of the other data that we've already got accumulated here.

So sometimes what we need to do is Insert Cells. So I'm going to select these cells right here, and using the right mouse button, Insert, notice that there are three dots behind this. If we had chosen a row or earlier as we had seen, we'd choose a column, no questions asked. This means we go to a dialog box automatically. We are about to insert cells, but do we want to shift them rightward or downward? And based on the nature of the data and how we've highlighted them, Excel is suggesting we want to shift these cells down. So we click OK.

Now, as we do this keep an eye on the totals that are in row seven, they're going to get bumped down. They're still going to be accurate, and maybe we'll put in Pennsylvania (PA) over here and also over here. Although I don't have the numbers ready just yet, what's happened to the formula here? It has been adjusted automatically. So there are times when you want to Insert Cells. Now, if we insert a new set of cells above the data here, it's going to push all the formulas down. So as a general rule, you don't worry about your formulas getting destroyed if you insert rows and columns.

There are exceptions to that, but for the most part that's not a major issue. But let's suppose we wanted to add a name to the list here. If we're not too careful and if we haven't scoped out this worksheet or if we're unfamiliar with it, we could easily make the mistake of saying, "Okay, if I want to put in a new name here--and of course we can do this at the bottom--why don't we right-click here, insert a row?" And we could add a new name. But meanwhile, what has happened to the other part of the worksheet as we scroll rightward here? We've put a new empty row on the TaxTable and we've put an empty row out here. That's probably not what you had in mind.

And so here too as I press Ctrl+Z to undo--which you probably would mean to do here--and let me make these two columns narrower, so we can see this a bit better, I'll just drag them this way. If we want to put a new name above this set of data here, highlight just this data, then right-click and Insert, shift these cells down, add the new name that way. And of course that does not disrupt the data to the right. Earlier we had the Pennsylvania (PA) in there automatically. So it didn't destroy the table in any way, didn't insert any empty cells there.

So just be sensitive to the idea. There certainly are times when you want to insert a new row, at other times insert cells, and certainly the same idea applies to columns as well. Now, there will be times of course when we need to delete a column, and maybe we've decided we're not going to put the Social Security Number in here, maybe it's too late to do an undo because we've taken some other effective measures in the meantime. So we want to get rid of Column D. The easiest way would be simply to right-click Column D and choose Delete; and all of our columns shift to the left.

If it turns out that we really don't want to add a name here, of course we don't want to delete the entire row, we've got data off to the right that we want to keep, but we might want to delete the cells. So right-click and Delete and shift the cells up. This only affects the data between Columns A through I. So the data below that will shift up. Nothing to the right will change whatsoever. So inserting and deleting columns and rows as well as inserting and deleting cells makes sense. It gives us the basic tools for redesigning our worksheets when necessary.

Inserting and deleting rows and columns
Video duration: 4m 52s 6h 32m Appropriate for all


Inserting and deleting rows and columns provides you with in-depth training on Business. Taught by Dennis Taylor as part of the Excel 2013 Essential Training

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