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Cell Styles in Excel: Applying & Modifying Styles

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  • 0:01 Cell Styles
  • 0:41 Applying Cell Styles
  • 3:34 Modifying Cell Styles…
  • 4:40 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Karen Sorensen

Karen has a Bachelors in Communications. She has 25 years of experience in Information Systems, Adult Learning and Virtual Training.

If you are looking for a quick and easy way to change the look of a cell or a range of cells, applying a predesigned style is the way to go. This lesson will help you understand Cell Styles and discuss how to apply Cell Styles to your numbers and text in a worksheet.

Cell Styles

There are two ways to apply a style to a cell or a range of cells. You can choose your fonts, colors and shading manually, or you can use Excel's existing styles. A style is a set of formatting options already created and ready for you to apply to a cell or range of cells. Cell styles are a quick and an easy way to give your worksheet a more appealing and organized look, such as applying a style to headers and titles.

This lesson will review the steps to adding predesigned cell styles to your worksheets and guide you through the steps to changing the style once it has been applied.

Applying Cell Styles

Imagine you just spent hours creating an Excel workbook for your boss. The entire workbook is the revenue results for the year, detailed by each region. Each regional director sent you their results for quarter 1 and 2, and you have combined each spreadsheet into one workbook.

We have four regions, one worksheet per region. As you review the workbook, you notice that each worksheet is a little different. There are different fonts, font colors and shading for the titles, headers, input and totals. Before you present the document to your boss, you want to make sure that all elements of the different worksheets are the same and consistent. This is where cell styles can come to your rescue.

You could go into each worksheet and manually change the look of each type of content, or you could just apply the same style for each element of the worksheet.

The worksheets lack consistency in their formatting
worksheet example

In the lesson video, I have our workbook. Notice each worksheet looks a little bit different because there is no consistency in the formatting of the information. Let's start with making sure our header row (or column titles) are the same for each region. In this case, we will begin with the first region or worksheet, apply a style, then apply that same style to the other three regions.

  1. Select the cell range for the column titles.
  2. Go the Home menu in the ribbon.
  3. Look in Styles grouping of commands.
  4. Click on the Cell Styles command.
  5. Look in the Titles and Headings section and choose a heading style. (In our case, we will choose Heading 3.)

Now we can apply that same style to each worksheet and use this same process to apply consistent styles to each element or data type. This eliminates the need to manually select the font type, color and size, along with the shading, for each range of cells in a worksheet.

Cell Styles command
cell styles command

Take a moment to notice that the Cell Styles command presents many different types to choose from, such as Normal, Bad, Good and Neutral. In addition, the styles are categorized into different types of data, for instance Data and Model.

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