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Written by Jacky Chou

15 Keyboard Shortcuts For Excel Highlight Cells Like A Pro

Key Takeaway:

  • Highlighting cells in Excel can expedite data analysis: Keyboard shortcuts make it easier to highlight the current cell, range of cells, or entire column/row. This helps in efficient data processing and saves time.
  • Highlighting cells can simplify data interpretation: With keyboard shortcuts, you can highlight cells that contain specific text or values, are duplicates, have conditional formatting, or meet other criteria. This makes it easier to see patterns and trends in the data.
  • Highlighting cells with customized shortcuts and VBA save time and effort: By assigning your own shortcuts or using Visual Basic for Applications (VBA), you can customize the highlighting process to meet your specific needs, which can simplify analysis and cut down on manual data processing.

Are you tired of struggling to highlight cells in a Microsoft Excel document? You don’t have to anymore! This article outlines 15 useful keyboard shortcuts to quickly select and highlight cells like a pro.

15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro

Be a pro at highlighting cells in Excel! Master the 15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells. Each shortcut provides an exclusive and productive way to highlight cells. These shortcuts include:

  1. The current cell
  2. Using VBA to highlight cells
  3. Highlighting cells with a certain value/date
  4. Showing/hiding highlighted cells
  5. Custom shortcuts

Make your Excel experience fast and efficient with these 15 shortcuts!

15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro-15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro,

Image credits: by David Washington

Shortcut 1: Highlight the Current Cell

To select the current cell in Excel, try using a keyboard shortcut designed for quick action. By highlighting the current cell, users can avoid errors and expedite their work process.

  1. Pressing 'Ctrl' + '/', will select the active or current cell.
  2. To navigate to another worksheet while still highlighting the current cell, use 'Ctrl' + 'Shift' + '.' to move right and 'Ctrl' + 'Shift' + ',' for left.
  3. Another way to highlight the current cell is by pressing 'Ctrl' + 'Shift' + spacebar'. This will select the entire row containing your active or current cell.

In addition to highlighting just one column at a time with shortcuts like Ctrl+Space or Shift+Space, there are many other ways to streamline Excel workflow through keyboard shortcuts.

By utilizing these simple tricks and steps when working in Excel, you can dramatically increase your productivity and become an expert user in no time!

Don’t miss out on all that Excel can offer! Try these shortcuts today to improve your spreadsheet game. Get ready to unleash your inner artist as you highlight Excel cells like a pro with this shortcut that’s sure to make your spreadsheets pop!

Shortcut 2: Highlight a Range of Cells

To highlight a range of cells in Excel, there are specific keyboard shortcuts that can be utilized. The following guide explains this shortcut in detail:

  1. First, select the starting cell of the range you want to highlight.
  2. Press and hold the Shift key.
  3. While holding down the Shift key, use the arrow keys (up, down, left or right) to expand or contract your range.
  4. Once the desired range is selected, release the Shift key.
  5. To finalize your highlighted cells press Ctrl + Enter.

It’s essential to use keyboard shortcuts in Excel to maximize productivity and speed up work processes. Highlighting a range of cells is no exception to this rule as it can save time when selecting cells quickly.

A unique feature of this shortcut is that it is flexible and can be used in several ways such as highlighting columns or rows by choosing their starting cell and dragging across them while holding down the shift key.

Pro Tip: When working on large spreadsheets or complex workbooks with multiple sheets, using these types of keyboard shortcuts increases efficiency and accuracy levels. Excel’s got a lazy streak – why highlight cell by cell when you can highlight an entire column/row with just one keystroke?

Shortcut 3: Highlight the Entire Column/Row

To highlight the entire row or column in Excel, use this keyboard shortcut. It will help you save time and increase your productivity.


Press [Ctrl]+[Spacebar] to select the entire column, and [Shift]+[Spacebar] to select the entire row. This is an easy way to quickly highlight data without having to scroll through your document manually.

A fun fact about this shortcut is that it was actually designed with efficiency in mind. According to a Microsoft study, users who regularly use keyboard shortcuts are able to complete tasks up to four times faster than those who rely on mouse clicks alone. So give it a try and see how much time you can save!

Add some pizzazz to your Excel spreadsheets by changing highlight colors with just a keystroke – now even your boring data can be visually stimulating.

Shortcut 4: Change Highlight Color

To modify the shade of your highlighted cells, utilize ‘Shortcut 4: Update Highlight Color’. Here’s how:

  1. Open Excel.
  2. Select the range of cells you wish to highlight.
  3. Type ALT+H+H or select the ‘Home’ tab on the ribbon and tap on ‘Fill Color’.
  4. Choose a new color for your highlighted cells.
  5. Press Enter or click outside the menu to apply your changes.

Another essential aspect to keep in mind is that you can select diverse colors from a customized palette by tapping on ‘More Colors’ at the bottom of the menu.

Pro Tip: Use a consistent color scheme in your worksheets to organize and categorize data quickly.

Time to give those digits some spotlight – Shortcut 5 lets you easily highlight all cells with numbers or formulas. Excel, making math exciting since 1985.

Shortcut 5: Highlight All Cells with a Number/Formula

Microsoft Excel’s Keyboard Shortcut 5 enables the highlighting of cells that contain numbers or formulas with ease. Follow the steps below to learn how to use this outstanding feature.

  1. Select all the cells by pressing Ctrl + A.
  2. Press F5 to invoke the ‘Go To’ Dialog Box.
  3. Click on the ‘Special’ button to access the ‘Go To Special’ dialog box.
  4. Select ‘Constants’ and choose ‘Numbers’, then click on ‘OK.’
  5. Now, all the cells with numbers or formulas will be highlighted. You can apply any format you want to these highlighted cells.

This shortcut feature makes it easy for you to identify empty spaces in a worksheet. Once all cells containing values get highlighted, it is easy for users to put their selected Null value into action. Users can save time and improve efficiency by using keyboard shortcuts.

Using excel shortcuts not only speeds up your work but also enhances your performance at work. Excel provides various useful features to update large amounts of data simultaneously, thus making payments easier.

Time to shake things up in the spreadsheet world by highlighting cells like a pro, or at least, like someone who knows their shortcuts.

Shortcut 6: Highlight Cells Above/Below a Certain Value

When looking to highlight cells with values that exceed or fall below a specific number, here are some expert shortcuts you can use:

  • Select the cells you want to investigate
  • Press ALT+O+D/ALT+A+W to open up the Conditional Formatting dialogue box
  • Choose “Highlight Cell Rules”
  • Select “Greater Than” or “Less Than”
  • Enter your value in the text field and specify which color you want to use

Moreover, these shortcuts will help you refine data sets better and give insights quickly. Allowing the user to explore findings efficiently.

A piece of real-life data analysis sought to answer the question, “What is more important for customer retention? Customer account representatives (CARs) or pricing?” After analyzing sales data and customer feedback, the team found that while both factors impact retention rates, CAR interactions had a more profound effect on customers staying loyal.

Highlighting cells with specific text/values in Excel is like finding a needle in a haystack, but with this shortcut, you’ll be the best needle-picker in town.

Shortcut 7: Highlight Cells with Specific Text/Value

When working with a large data set in Excel, finding specific values or texts can be a daunting task, but there is a solution. With this nifty shortcut, locating and highlighting particular cells has never been easier.

To highlight cells with specific text/value in Excel:

  1. Highlight the range where you want to locate the particular value
  2. Press “Ctrl + F” to open the Find and Replace Dialog box
  3. Type the keyword/text/value in the search bar and then click on “Find All“. Once all the relevant cells are highlighted, close the dialog box.

This method will not only save you time scouring through heaps of data manually but also ensure that no crucial data point is missed out.

It’s important to note that this shortcut is not limited to finding exact matches. If you type partial/ incomplete words or phrases, Excel will still highlight all cells containing them.

In the past, professionals had to fork out hours combing through spreadsheets for vital information. However, thanks to modern technology like semantic analysis and Natural Language Processing (NLP), users can now breeze through their workdays without breaking a sweat.

Highlighting duplicate cells in Excel: Because one of everything is enough, unless it’s a keyboard shortcut.

Shortcut 8: Highlight Duplicate/Unique Cells

You can effortlessly highlight duplicate or unique cells in Excel with this shortcut:

  1. Select the range of cells where you want to identify duplicates or unique values.
  2. Press Alt+H, H on your keyboard to select Conditional Formatting, then New Rule.
  3. Choose Use a formula to determine which cells to format.
  4. To highlight duplicates, enter =COUNTIF($A$1:$A$10,A1)>1 into the formula box.
  5. If you want to highlight unique values, select Format only unique or duplicate values and then choose Unique from the drop-down list.
  6. Select the formatting style you want for your highlighted cells and click OK.

This shortcut saves time when working with large datasets by quickly highlighting duplicates and unique values.

Did you know that Excel was originally released in 1985 for Macintosh computers? Since then, it has become one of the most widely used spreadsheet applications worldwide.

If you’re stuck in the past and can’t keep up with current dates, Excel has got your back with Shortcut 9: Highlight Cells Based on Date.

Shortcut 9: Highlight Cells Based on Date

To highlight cells based on a date in Excel, utilize a specific shortcut known for its efficiency. By following the 3-Step Guide below, you can utilize this Shortcut seamlessly.

  1. Select the column that contains dates you want to highlight.
  2. Press Alt+H, L, and then S sequentially.
  3. In the New Formatting Rule dialog box, select ‘Use a formula to determine which cells to format’. Enter the formula as: =TODAY()-D1>30 – this will highlight cells dated more than 30 days old.

It’s worth noting that you can amend ‘30’ to any number of your choice, depending on how old or new you want the dates highlighted to be.

The above guide provides a precise overview of how to Highlight Cells Based on Date using Excel shortcuts. Utilizing these shortcuts decreases time expenditure significantly while working on Excel tasks.

Adding shortcuts can boost productivity immensely while cutting time expenditures remarkably. Unleash your inner Picasso with Conditional Formatting and Excel’s shortcut, before your spreadsheet turns into a 2D horror show.

Shortcut 10: Highlight Cells with Conditional Formatting

Conditional Formatting is an Excel feature that allows users to format cells based on predefined rules. This technique is called Shortcut 10: Cells Highlighting with Conditions, enabling you to harness data insights and trends quickly.

Here are the three simple steps to highlight cells using conditional formatting:

  1. Select the range of cells you want to apply conditional formatting.
  2. Click on the Home tab, select Conditional Formatting in the Styles group and then click on Highlight Cells Rules.
  3. Select a rule type, set your preferred conditions, choose a highlighting style and click Apply.

Users may quickly highlight specific cell values, such as numeric or text-based data with Shortcut10. The shortcut has automated these time-consuming procedures.

Highlighting cells with conditional formatting has one unique advantage; it tells Excel what properties to use when applying specific styles provided within the dialog box.

To create visually appealing reports, applying appropriate color schemes that highlight important details helps users convey critical information effortlessly. Highlighting multiple data points can also help users quickly identify trends and outliers for further analysis.

Historically Excel did not have this capability until Microsoft introduced Conditional Formatting in Excel 2007. This innovation allowed business analysts to spot trends faster than ever before, providing smarter decisions and faster response times for emerging opportunities or threats.

You can’t always highlight the best, sometimes you gotta un-highlight the rest with Shortcut 11.

Shortcut 11: Remove Highlight from Cells

To undo cell highlights in Excel, you can use a specific keyboard shortcut. This action will help to remove any highlight added to the cells.

Here is a 4-Step Guide on how to Remove Highlight from Cells in Excel quickly and effortlessly:

  1. Select the highlighted cells.
  2. Press the Ctrl + Alt + H keys.
  3. Find and click on “Clear Rules” from the drop-down menu that appears.
  4. Select “Clear Rules from Selected Cells” and press Enter or click OK.

One additional point worth mentioning is that you should take care when removing multiple cell highlights simultaneously, as it may lead to accidental deletion of important data.

To avoid this issue, make sure that you only remove the highlight from selected parts of the worksheet using this feature.

For better performance while highlighting and removing cells, we suggest learning more about Excel shortcut keys. Moreover, always double-check your actions before finalizing them as they can affect crucial data.

Unleash your inner magician with Shortcut 12 and make highlighted cells disappear like a rabbit in a hat.

Shortcut 12: Show/Hide Highlighted Cells

To toggle between showing and hiding highlighted cells, use a keyboard shortcut that helps you manage data effectively. Streamline your workflow with ‘Shortcut 12: Toggle Highlighted Cells’ by following this five-step guide:

  1. Select the cells you want to hide in the worksheet.
  2. Press Ctrl+1 to open the Format Cells dialog box.
  3. Select the Hidden checkbox from the Protection tab and click Ok.
  4. Now press Ctrl+Shift+( (Left Parenthesis) to hide selected cells and Ctrl+Shift+) (Right Parenthesis) to unhide them.
  5. You can also create a custom keyboard shortcut by clicking on New from the Shortcut Key section of Format Cells Dialog Box.

It’s important to remember that when you hide cells, any formulas or calculations referencing those hidden cells will still work, but won’t be visible until unhidden. Utilizing this unique technique can save time and keep your data organized.

In practice, toggling doesn’t remove data but only hides it from view. Did you know Excel shortcuts can increase productivity by up to 50%? (source: Microsoft)

Custom shortcuts in Excel? Because who has time to waste on unnecessary clicks and keystrokes?

Shortcut 13: Create a Custom Shortcut

Customize Your Own Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel

Creating custom keyboard shortcuts in Excel can help boost productivity and save time by avoiding inefficient manual steps. Here’s how to create a shortcut of your own:

  1. Select the function you would like to perform
  2. Click on “Options” from the “File” menu
  3. Choose “Customize Ribbon”, then click on “Keyboard Shortcuts”

From here, you will be able to visualize all the current shortcuts and customize your own hotkeys based on commands that do not currently have one assigned.

Furthermore, once you’ve created custom shortcuts for Excel, practice using them regularly until they become second nature. This will help increase productivity even further by reducing the number of manual steps between commands and functions.

Excel just got even quicker with Quick Analysis – highlight those cells like a boss!

Shortcut 14: Use Quick Analysis to Highlight Cells

By using Quick Analysis in Excel, you can highlight cells like a professional. Follow these five simple steps to learn how:

  1. First, select the range of cells you want to highlight.
  2. Next, click on the Quick Analysis icon that appears at the bottom right-hand corner of your selection.
  3. From there, choose ‘Formatting’ and then select ‘Highlight Cells Rules.’
  4. You will have the option to highlight cells based on rules such as ‘Greater Than,’ ‘Text That Contains,’ and more.
  5. Select the appropriate rule and adjust any necessary settings before applying it to your selected range of cells.

Highlighting cells through Quick Analysis is a great way to efficiently format your Excel sheet without wasting time manually applying formatting.

It’s worth noting that not all versions of Excel have Quick Analysis. Ensure that you have this feature available before attempting to use this shortcut.

Did you know that Quick Analysis was first introduced in Excel 2013? Its addition has helped streamline formatting processes for users across the world.

Feeling fancy? Use VBA to highlight cells like a true Excel wizard.

Shortcut 15: Use VBA to Highlight Cells

When it comes to highlighting cells in Excel like a pro, Shortcut 15 utilizing VBA is an efficient and effective tool. It allows users to highlight specific cells or ranges of cells based on certain conditions, ultimately simplifying data analysis and organization.

Here’s a five-step guide for using Shortcut 15:

  1. Begin by opening the Visual Basic Editor, which can be accessed through the Developer tab on the Ribbon.
  2. In the editor window, insert a new module and start by typing “Sub” followed by the name of your macro in the first line.
  3. Next, declare variables such as the range of cells you want to highlight and any specific conditions that must be met.
  4. After writing out the parameters for your macro, specify how you want Excel to format highlighted cells according to your criteria. For example, you could tell Excel to fill all qualifying cells with yellow shading or change font color on specified values.
  5. Finally, apply your new macro to a specific sheet or workbook by going back into Excel and running it from under “Macros” in the developer tab.

Remember that practice makes perfect when it comes to mastering VBA shortcuts like this one.

Unique details about Shortcut 15 include its ability to pinpoint higher-level data trends based on highly specific input criteria. By customizing which conditions must be met for certain data points to draw attention visually (e.g., values greater than or less than a set number), users can efficiently identify core data patterns without getting bogged down in minutiae.

Did you know that Microsoft actually provides users with extensive documentation detailing how exactly VBA shortcuts work with Excel? All functions are thoroughly documented in detail over at!

Five Facts About 15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro:

  • ✅ These keyboard shortcuts can save you time and make it easier to work with large amounts of data in Excel.
  • ✅ The highlight shortcut (Ctrl + Shift + Arrow Key) allows you to quickly select entire rows or columns based on the direction of the arrow key.
  • ✅ The highlight shortcut can also be used in combination with other keys, such as Shift + Ctrl + Spacebar to select the entire worksheet.
  • ✅ Other handy shortcuts include Ctrl + 1 for formatting, Ctrl + F to find data, and Ctrl + ; to insert the current date.
  • ✅ Learning these keyboard shortcuts can improve your efficiency and productivity when working with Excel spreadsheets.

FAQs about 15 Keyboard Shortcuts For Excel Highlight Cells Like A Pro

What are the 15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro?

The 15 Keyboard Shortcuts for Excel Highlight Cells Like a Pro are:

  • Ctrl + Shift + # – Apply Date Format (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Ctrl + Shift + $ – Apply Currency Format ($)
  • Ctrl + Shift + % – Apply Percent Format (%)
  • Ctrl + B – Bold Text
  • Ctrl + I – Italicize Text
  • Ctrl + U – Underline Text
  • Ctrl + 1 – Format Cells Dialog Box
  • Alt + H + H – Highlight Cells Dropdown Menu
  • Alt + H + L – Clear Formatting
  • Alt + H + H + V – Paste Values Only
  • Alt + W + F + F – Freeze Panes
  • Alt + W + S – Split Panes
  • Alt + A + T – Filter Data
  • Alt + H + D + L – Remove Duplicates
  • Ctrl + Shift + L – Apply Filter

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