Excel Tip - Word Wrapping Text as you Type

You may know about the wrap text tool in Excel that allows you to arrange text in a cell over several lines, but did you know that you can achieve the same result using a keyboard combination as you type the headings?... 

 

  • In the following example, the headings in Row 2 make the columns B – E appear quite wide in contrast to the two digit numbers in the data:

 

  • It would be clearer to see the two words in the titles appear on two rows in the cell rather than in one long line.  This is a useful feature if you have long column headings and you don’t want to have very wide columns widths because of this

 

  • Start in the cell for you first heading, in the example above, we started in B2. Type the first word for your column heading, we typed “North"

 

  • After typing the first word of the heading, on the keyboard, press Alt Return or Alt Enter and type the next part of the heading.  We have typed “Region” in the example below:

 

  • Press the Tab key to move to the next adjacent cell Type “East” and then press Alt Return or Alt Enter and type the next part of the heading “Region”.  Continue across the worksheet for additional headings:

 

  • Row 2 will adjust its height to accommodate the number of rows of text that you type, but you can adjust the row height further by dragging the row divider between Rows 2 and 3:

 

  • To centre the text within the new row height, select the entire row by clicking on Row 2 Number, then select the Middle Align tool and the Center tool in the Alignment group on the Home tab

 

  • Another benefit of word wrapping your headings as you type, you get to control where the text breaks rather than when using the Text Wrapping tool, that determines where to break the text

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