Setting a Default for Shifting when Inserting

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 27, 2016)

3

When Col inserts cells into a worksheet (not rows, but cells), the process seems to take longer than it should because he always has to check to see if Excel will shift the displaced cells down or to the right. He always wants the cells to be shifted downward, so he is wondering if there is a way to make "shift down" the default.

As Col implied, when you choose some cells and the use the Insert Cells command, Excel displays a dialog box where you can indicate how you want the displaced cells shifted. This process can, indeed, seem to take quite a while if all you ever want to do is shift down when you insert. Unfortunately, there is no way to change the default in Excel.

The solution is to use a macro to do your inserting. It doesn't need to be a long one; for instance, the following will shift cells down when inserting:

Sub ShiftDown()
    Selection.Insert Shift:=xlDown
End Sub

Assign the macro to the Quick Access Toolbar or to a shortcut key, and you can easily shift cells down as you insert. All you need to do is to select the cells (or, indeed, entire rows) and then use the macro. If you want to create variations of the macro that always shift in different directions, all you need to do is change xlDown to xlUp, xlLeft, or xlRight.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (4078) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Converting to Hyperlinks in a Shared Workbook

When you enter a URL or e-mail address in a worksheet, Excel usually converts it to a clickable hyperlink. This doesn't ...

Discover More

Removing All Comments

Need to get rid of all the comments in your document? You can do so by using the regular Find and Replace feature of Word.

Discover More

Preserving the Undo List

The undo list can be a lifesaver when working in a macro. Unfortunately, the undo list is not preserved when you run a ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Entering Info into Multiple Cells

Want to make an entry of the same value into a group of selected cells? It's easy to do with just one small change in how ...

Discover More

Automatically Breaking Text

Want to convert the text in a cell so that it wraps after every word? You could edit the cell and press Alt+Enter after ...

Discover More

Dates Copied Incorrectly

Under the right circumstances, you may notice problems when copying dates from one workbook to another. This tip explains ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 - 3?

2016-08-29 08:44:28

Adam

I was not even thinking about this when the original email was sent, but a keystroke sequence which works (hearkening back to 2003 menu options) is alt+i+r (the old Insert menu, then row). It is an option without picking up the mouse.


2016-08-27 20:04:53

Alex B

The macro is obviously going to give you the quickest way of doing it, but inserting using keystrokes is already quite quick.

To Insert
Ctrl+"+"
followed by
"D" and enter

PS: if you don't use the numeric keypad it is likely to involve using the shift key to get the "+".


2016-08-27 08:46:30

sheldon hopkins

There is a 'permanent' way to shift cell direction upon pressing the enter key:

Click the File "tab" : select Options :
Advanced The first editing option
allows your to select the direction
of movement in three directions.

This is a permanent direction movement, and will have to be reset for other
movement after 'enter'.


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.