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Have you ever wondered if you can limit entries in an Excel sheet from different users by giving them only a certain number of values to choose from? This functionality is common in software like Access where there is a control list that has limited choices. This programs also have control options for highlighting and or changing font colors or other formatting control limitations. Typically, users select their choices in every cell by clicking the small triangle to display a dropdown of choices. The good news is that you have the same capabilities in Microsoft Excel. You can click here to learn more


It can be tricky to do that but it is not that hard. This function is possible with Excel's Data Validation commands. There are a few step to this feature. It may require some patience at first but if done right, you will appreciate the function. To get started you are going to need your list and the data entry cell or cells. And just like in Access, after performing these steps, users will also see a small arrow that they can click in order to display the data that are available for them to use.


Let's get right to it. Let us use Column A for this exercise.  Enter data items in one column, for example you can start from A1 down to A4 or so on depending on how big or small your list is. It also doesn't have to be column A at all. Any column will do for as long as all the items are in one single column. Then go to another cell, say B2. Then from the menu, find and select Data Validation and then a new window will pop up. Under the Settings tab select List from drop-down list below Allow. A Source control box will appear. Click the button at the end of the source box and drag to highlight the cells in column A or any column where you typed down your list. You can also type in your reference by putting on the box the cell where you list started and the cell where you list ended, separated by a colon. 


Be sure to have In-Cell Dropdown ticked, otherwise there will be no drop-down list to appear. Click OK and you are done. So those are the steps that will help you create a dropdown in Excel. You can also click here to learn more.


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