How to Use Alignment and Wrap Text Features in Excel 2013

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Working with alignment and Wrap Text

On the Home Tab in the ribbon, there is an alignment group with a variety of tools for allowing you to line up text in different ways within cells. Here's a look you may or may not like. I'm going to highlight the cells in row 3 and using this icon right here for Orientation, click the drop arrow and maybe angle the data counterclockwise, maybe gives it a little bit of flare or possibly exploring these some more and clicking the arrow. How about Rotating the Text Up? How does that look? Could be interesting maybe. We could adjust the row height eventually too, if we wish, so that makes sense sometimes.

If we want to change back here, we can simply rotate the text up again and actually that turns it back to normal or possibly could have done an undo there too. There are times when you've got data in a cell and you actually want to wrap the data, so that it appears as if you've got two rows of data in the same cell. We could certainly make column A wider, but on the other hand we might want it narrower. Let's apply what's called Wrap Text to the data here, for example. This may cause some unsatisfactory appearances. We might eventually change our minds and readjust the column width.

By going to Wrap Text, what we're seeing here is "wrap the text". In other words, if it won't fit across the column width, then put it in the same cell but underneath the data this way. I think in the example here, these aren't great choices, but do recognize this, if you were in a different worksheet-- let's imagine that we were for the moment-- if you're going to put in an entry on the column, maybe you want to put in 2013 Salary and you're envisioning the column not needing to be very wide. If you want the word Salary to appear under 2013, you can press Alt+Enter and then type Salary and then Enter.

It automatically stacks up the data that way. By pressing Alt+Enter, you were controlling where the wrap occurs. Another example could be--we'll just use this again--imagine that we're in a totally different worksheet here. If I were to type in 2013 and then Alt+ Enter and put in Tax, and then Alt+Enter and then Rate, if this is a column, it only is going to have letters or a few numbers in them, that would give us the opportunity to make the column maybe a lot narrower, if we had that kind of data in it. Recognize that you can also wrap texts, simply by pressing Alt+Enter to force a line break.

Now, at times we have data like this that's a title, and this is in cell D1, and it might look fine there, it might look better though if it were in the middle of the cell--not middle left- right--but middle, meaning top-bottom. These three buttons here have to do with vertical alignment. This is currently bottom aligned, it might look better in the middle, so let's see it that way, where it might look better on top; so we can make those changes. Now, it might also make sense to center this across these cells.

The data itself is in D1, so what might we consider doing here? How about merge in the center? And that makes sense there too. We might want to do that with this as well, centering all the way across there-- that may or may not be a good choice-- but we could try it, Merge & Center. In this case, as in the case up here, we've essentially blended or merged all of these cells, A1 through I1 are now one big cell called A1, and there is really no B1 and C1 here. This is all one big cell here.

You might add color to it, something like that. We've centered this across columns A through I. In this example here, we've centered it across columns D through I. Keep in mind too, something really basic, we might want to take this data and center it and of course we've got these buttons here for Aligning Right, Center, and Left, maybe Center looks better there and maybe not, maybe lining it up on the right. From time to time, that might be the better choice. We've got easy tools here for realigning data, both horizontally here, vertically here.

Earlier we saw Orientation, Angling Text and Wrap Text, as well as Merge &Center. Various Alignment Tools we have at our fingertips, by way of the Alignment group on the Home tab.

Working with alignment and Wrap Text
Video duration: 4m 2s 6h 32m Appropriate for all


Working with alignment and Wrap Text 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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