How to sort a list in Microsoft Excel

Updated: 05/21/2018 by Computer Hope
Microsoft Excel

In Microsoft Excel, you can use the Sort feature to perform many actions with lists and tables of data. Users are generally looking alphabetize many text values or arrange a list of numbers in order from lowest to highest or from highest to lowest. To proceed, follow the instructions in the next section.


Details on how to sort quickly are in the second section farther down the page.

Using sort to organize a list

  1. In Excel, highlight the values in a column that you want to organize.
  2. Click the Data tab at the top of the program window.
  3. Click the Sort option.
  4. Make sure the Sort by option is set to the column that you highlighted. If there are column header names, you can check the My data has headers box in the upper-right corner to use the header name in the Sort by option.
  5. Under Order, click the down arrow.
  6. In the drop-down menu, select the option that sorts the data to your liking.
  7. Click OK to sort the highlighted values.

Sorting in Microsoft Excel


To sort more than one column at the same time, after completing step 6 above, click the Add Level button. A second row is added to the Sort window. Follow steps 4 through 6 above for each new level added for sorting.

Using the Quick Sort feature

If you only need to organize your data in ascending or descending order, you can use the Quick Sort feature. Highlight the values you want to sort, then on the Data tab, click the Sort A to Z option or the Sort Z to A option.

How to Quick Sort in Microsoft Excel.