How to Move Columns in Excel?
We can move columns in excel from one position to another using two simple methods –
- Method #1 – Drag Option
- Method #2 – Cut and Paste Option
Let us discuss the two methods in detail –
#1 Move Columns using Drag Option
Usually, when we apply the basic excel formula in the first cell, we either copy and paste to remaining cells, or we just simply drag the formula cell to other remaining cells. This is where our first hands-on dragging comes into the picture.
For the practical example of moving or swapping columns, I have created the below data.
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In an ideal data structure of organizations, data of employees should start with Emp ID, Emp Name, and Department. But in the above example, we have the opposite of this completely; we need to sort this issue by arranging the data in order. To make the data organized, we will show you a simple dragging method but a tricky one.
- Step 1: First, select the Emp ID column.
- Step 2: Now, on the selected column at the right side of the selected place a cursor on the column as shown below.
- Step 3: As soon as you can see this icon, hold on the SHIFT key, and hold the left click of the mouse, and drag the column to the required column. In this example, we are dragging the column from the third position to the first position. So drag till the first column, as shown in the below picture.
- Step 4: Once you reach the desired column, just leave the SHIFT key and left-click of the mouse. Now the current column (Dept) will be moved to the right, i.e., now Dept occupies the second column, i.e., “B.”
Step 5: As we can see in the above image, Emp ID is the first column, and all the other columns moved one position right to the column. Now select the Emp Name column and drag to first place once again.
#2 Move Columns using CUT & PASTE Method
We can drag the column by using our traditional CUT, COPY – PASTE method as well.
- Step 1: For this first, we need to select the column that is required to swap, so I will select the column EMP ID here.
- Step 2: Now press the shortcut key Ctr + X or right-click on the column and select CUT.
- Step 3: After we cut the column now, we need to select the column where we need to insert it. In this example, I am selecting the first column.
- Step 4: Now, I will right-click on the column and select “Insert Cut Cells.”
- Step 5: As soon as you choose the option “Insert Cut Cell,” it will move the current column to the right, and the newly inserted column occupies the first column spot.
- Step 6: Now select the Emp Name column and press Ctrl + X.
- Step 7: Now, select column B.
- Step 8: Right-click and choose “Insert Cut Cell.”
- Step 9: Now, we have data organized in order.
Like this, we can move columns in excel from one position to another to change the position and arrange the data in order.
Note: the First option is a quite risky one because if you forget the option of holding the shift key, you may lose the data. However, it will intimate you before replacing it.
This has been a guide to Move Columns in Excel. Here we learn how to Move or drag Columns in Excel and swap columns by using the CUT & PASTE method along with practical examples and downloadable templates. You may learn more about excel from the following articles –