In Your Basic Arsenal How to Use the Quick Access Toolbar

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The Quick Access Toolbar

Located in the upper left-hand corner is what's called the Quick Access Toolbar. Initially, it consists of four or five buttons, but it can be expanded and put to good use. What it represents is an area of the screen that's always going to be visible. The idea here is, if there are certain features that you use in Excel often, you might want to have them represented on the Quick Access Toolbar. Initially, you'll see a button for "saving", "undoing", and "redoing". Off to the right is a Special Drop Arrow, Customize Quick Access Toolbar.

Do you want a special button for Quick Printing? Do you print often? This might be handy. If we click this choice, we now have an icon for Quick Printing. Click this again, might we use or do we think we know we will be using Spelling checking a lot? We'll, click this icon as well. Now over time, maybe you'll decide, we don't use that that much or don't use that often, maybe we don't need this. You can easily click with the right mouse button and simply remove this from the Quick Access Toolbar, but there's an even broader use. Suppose you've gotten comfortable with Excel and one of the features that you use often is applying a color background? Fill Color-- it's on the Home Tab.

Well, what if one day you're working with the Data Tab and maybe you start to use the Data Tab a lot because you're working with a list like what we see here? You might be doing sorting and filtering. What if you want to apply color right now? What do you need to do? You've got to go back to the Home Tab to get to this button. Instead of doing that each time you need this feature, one that you use often-- and you can do this with any icon in the ribbon system-- right-click and add to Quick Access Toolbar and there it is. If we are working with our data on the Data Tab or the Review Tab or the Formulas Tab, and we want to use that color background, well then, we can select the cells and simply use that button without needing to go back to the Home Tab, so it can be used that way as well.

Furthermore, the drop arrow that we see here on the right, Customize Quick Access Toolbar, has the choice at the bottom called More Commands. This leads us into a completely different dialog box, alerting us to the fact that any of these commands that we see here--under the heading Popular Commands-- any of these can be buttons on our Quick Access Toolbar. If there's a feature such as Shapes that you might use often, you can add that to the Quick Access Toolbar.

If that weren't enough, in addition to Popular Commands, click this arrow to the right and you'll see "Commands Not in the Ribbon". Now probably, this is for people who've been using Excel for a while or who have specialized uses. Here's a huge list of commands, well, over 300 of them. Any one of these has a button and in it too could be added to the Quick Access Toolbar. Believe it or not, there's a third choice here called "All Commands". Here, we have about a thousand choices. Again, file that away, come back to this some later time perhaps, and decide whether any of these buttons represents a feature that you use often-- you can add it to the Quick Access Toolbar.

The top-down order that we see here to the right does reflect the left to right order that we see in the upper left-hand corner of our screens. From time to time you may say, I want a certain button to be on the right hand edge. I want to make it easy, well, here's Quick Print, maybe you use it often. What might you do here? Move it down the list, which in effect will put it on the right-hand side. As we click OK here, we now see that our Print button is there too. Another option is the placement of the Quick Access Toolbar.

You might want to put it below the Ribbon. It will use up slightly more screen space, but it does put it closer to the data that you will be working with. If you right-click anywhere in the Quick Access Toolbar, you'll see an option called "Show Quick Access Toolbar Below the Ribbon" and you can put down here. And if later you change your mind about that, you can right-click the Quick Access Toolbar and show it "Above the Ribbon". Sometimes, you'll have many, many buttons in your Quick Access Toolbar. Sometimes, you'll decide to just start all over, or maybe you're working with another computer with many, many buttons, you want to simply start all over and design it your way.

You can easily right-click and customize the Quick Access Toolbar. And then on this Excel Options dialog box here, reset the Quick Access Toolbar, and now it's back in its original state. It's a great feature for customizing your use of Excel, so you can get to often used commands.

The Quick Access Toolbar
Video duration: 4m 41s 6h 32m Appropriate for all


The Quick Access Toolbar provides you with in-depth training on Business. Taught by Dennis Taylor as part of the Excel 2013 Essential Training

Business Education + Elearning
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