Excel SUM Shortcut

SUM Shortcut in Excel (‘Alt’ and ‘=’)

Excel Sum shortcut is very simple, to use this shortcut, just press ‘Alt’ and ‘=’ simultaneously in the cell where we want the sum for the corresponding cells, note the data to be sum is should be in continuous range.

Using Auto Sum in Excel to Reduce Cycle Time

simple shortcut key

This is the shortcut key to auto sum the above cell numbers. Ok, let’s try this out now. Place a cursor on the where we need to apply the excel sum formula; in this case, formula cell is A6.

excel sum shortcut example 2

Now hold the ALT key and press the equal sign.

excel sum shortcut example 2-1

As you can see, as soon as you press the excel shortcut key, it has applied the SUM formula by selecting the above cells as the reference.

Press the enter key to get the result in cell C6.

excel sum shortcut example 2-2

Like this using ALT + =, we can automatically apply the SUM function to get the total of above cell numbers.

Different Methods to Apply Excel SUM Formula Shortcut Key

Method #1 – Get Total to Below Cell

Let’s consider the same data, as we have seen in the previous example.

  1. First, select the range of cells from A1 to A5.

    excel sum shortcut example 3

  2. Since I need the result in the A6 cell, I have selected until that cell.Now press the shortcut key ALT + =.

    excel sum shortcut example 3-1

As you notice, it has not displayed any kind of SUM function syntax; rather, just give us the total of the numbers we have selected.

Method #2 – Click on Auto Sum under Home Tab

Let’s consider the same data for this example as well.

Place a cursor on the cell C6.


Now go to Home Tab and Press excel shortcut key AUTO SUM.

sum shortcut example 3-3

Now, as soon as you click on “Auto Sum,” we can see the pop-up SUM function in cell C6.


Like this, we can apply the Alt + = key to arrive at the results.

Auto Sum More than One Column Data in Excel

Assume we have numbers in more than one column, so how do we add these numbers.

Example 4

We have numbers in more than one column. So, select all the result columns once.

Example 4-1

Now, after selecting the result, cells press ALt + =.


It has applied the formula to the last cell of the selection, now don’t simply press Enter, rather hit Ctrl + Enter key to apply the same formula to all the selected cells.

Example 4-3

So, upon pressing this sum formula shortcut key, we got the sum total in all the selected cells.

Horizontal Auto Sum in Excel

Now we have seen how to apply excel auto sum shortcut to vertical data, i.e., Column Data. For this, consider the below data.


Now select the cells from A1 to E1.

Example 5-1

Now press the excel sum formula shortcut key, i.e., Alt + = to arrive auto sum.


As we can see, it has applied the excel sum formula shortcut to the beside cell of the selected cells.


One of the limitations of the sum shortcut key is it will consider all the above cells until it finds the blank cell only. For example, look at the below image.

I have data from A1 to A6 cell, but in this range, there is a blank cell, i.e., A3 cell.


I have pressed the shortcut key ALT + = Since there is a blank cell, the auto sum has ignored all the above cells which have data and returned only the sum of selected cells only.


In this example, data is small, and identification is easy, but in large data, it is a dangerous ploy, so be careful with this.

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to SUM Shortcut in Excel. Here we will show you how to use the auto sum “Sum Shortcut” key in excel, and we will also show you the limitations of the shortcut along with examples and a downloadable excel template. You may learn more about excel from the following articles –

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