Friday, October 27, 2017

Excel Tutorial: How Can I Customize SmartArt?

Elizabeth asked, "Once I insert SmartArt in Excel, how can I change the color and look?"

What Elizabeth is asking is very smart. Inserting the same old SmartArt and not changing it, or customizing it in any way, looks very boring. I recommend customizing SmartArt and other objects to match your company colors and logo, your presentation style and format, so that it doesn't feel like it was an after thought.

To customize SmartArt, simply follow these steps.

You can also watch the video tutorial below.

Click the "Insert" Tab.
Click "SmartArt" from the Illustrations group.

In the "Choose a SmartArt Graphic" dialog box, select the category on the left. Then you select the item in the middle. The right shows a preview of the item. Select OK to insert the content.

Excel inserts the selected SmartArt graphic in the middle of the spreadsheet.

You can simply click on one of the boxes and type in your text, if desired. Notice that the font sizes adjust, depending on how much text you enter.

Don't stop there, now it's time to customize the SmartArt.

With the SmartArt selected (click on it, if you need), you will see the "SmartArt Tools" contextual tabs "Design" and "Format."

Click on these tabs to see the customization options. Features on these tabs will be different based on the type of SmartArt you inserted.

You can customize things like the colors, the styles, and fonts.

Look around and practice to find the best look for your Excel spreadsheet and/or presentation.

Now that you know how to customize SmartArt, you will look like the expert professional for visualizing in Excel.

Watch the video tutorial here.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Excel Tutorial: Auditing Formulas with Trace Precedents

If you have formulas that are based on the contents of another cell, you have precedent cells. If you have problems with a formula or result, you can trace the precedent cells to help track down the problem. The Trace Precedents command is useful to see the trail of data relationships. The Trace Precedents command allows you to show tracer arrows to show the relationship between the active cell and the precedents to that cell. 

  • Tracer arrows are blue when pointing from a cell that provides data to another cell.
  • Red tracer arrows indicate an erroneous value.
  • Tracer arrows are black when pointing from a cell in another worksheet.
  • The other worksheet is represented by a worksheet icon. 

If you prefer, watch the Video Tutorial below.

If tracer arrows do not show, you will need to turn on the objects in the Options window. 

Use the following procedure.
  • Select the File Tab
  • Select Options.
  • Select the Advanced tab.
  • Under the Display options for this workbook, make sure the workbook you are using is displayed.
  • The For objects, show option should be All.

If a cell has a precedent that is in another worksheet, the other worksheet must be open.

For more tips like this, CLICK HERE to

download my FREE eBook:

65+ Ways to Use Office to be More Productive!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Excel Tutorial: Align Cells

In this Excel Tutorial: Align Cells, you'll learn the basic alignment techniques to make your data visually attractive. You'll also learn keyboard shortcuts for cell alignment.

If you prefer video, you may view the Excel Tutorial using the video below.

To align cells in Excel, it's quite simple.

Simply select the area you would like to align, typically this would be an entire column. If the entire column needs to be aligned a specific way, then click the Column Header to make the changes to the entire column.

Once the area is selected, click the alignment option you wish by using the "Alignment" area on the "Home" tab.

Options include:

  • Top, Middle, and Bottom Alignment for Vertical Alignment
  • Left, Center, and Right Alignment for Horizontal Alignment
  • Wrap Text to wrap the text within the cell
  • Merge and Center to merge data and center it across multiple cell
    • NOTE: Excel will give you a warning if you are merging data over existing data
  • And there are some indentation options as well

Here are a few keyboard shortcuts for these same functions to align cells:

  • CTRL + E = Center align 
  • CTRL + J = Justify align
  • CTRL + L = Left align
  • CTRL + R = Right align

Watch this brief video tutorial, if you prefer.

I'm excited to announce my newest course - Excel Essentials: Tutorial for Beginners!

In this course, you will learn to use Excel in under 2 hours! We not only cover the basics, but teach useful Formulas, Functions, and Analysis.

I'm proud to offer my First 30 Fans with a Coupon to take the course for FREE!

Just CLICK HERE for the FREE Coupon.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Excel Essentials: Tutorial for Beginners Now Open

I'm excited to announce my newest course - Excel Essentials: Tutorial for Beginners!

In this course, you will learn to use Excel in under 2 hours! We not only cover the basics, but teach useful Formulas, Functions, and Analysis.

I'm proud to offer my First 30 Fans with a Coupon to take the course for FREE!

Just CLICK HERE for the FREE Coupon.

All I ask in return is that you write a review on the course.

Watch this quick preview of the course to learn more:

I hope you enjoy the course, and I know that you will learn valuable Excel skills.



Sunday, October 15, 2017

How to Join Cells using Excel Concatenate

Excel Functions can seem overwhelming, but once they are broken down, they can be very easy, but can provide you with useful results.

Here's how to Join Cells using the Excel Function Concatenate.

You may read the steps here or view the video version below.

Do you need a Full Name field to import into a particular program? But, you only have First Name and Last Name fields in Excel? There are many times when you need to Merge or Join Cells in Excel - this tip shows you how easy it really is:

Insert a New Column.
Type =CONCATENATE(Cell1,Cell2,etc)

Using the formula above, here is an example of the results:

Cell A1             Cell B1              Cell C1           RESULTS Cell D1
Go                    Ask                   Debbie            GoAskDebbie

If these are the results you wish, simply Copy the formula down the column to include all rows you wish.

Let's say you need a Space or a Comma between each of the cells once they have been merged. To do this, type your formula as follows:
=CONCATENATE(Cell1," ",Cell2," ",etc.)

This would create the following result from the above scenario "Go Ask Debbie." Notice now there are spaces between the cell contents.

Get creative this can help you create many different types of results.

For more tips like this, CLICK HERE to
download my FREE eBook:
65+ Ways to Use Office to be More Productive!

How to Delete Blank Rows in Excel