Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Importing Custom Lists.

Importing Custom Lists

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 3, 2015)

Custom lists are a rather esoteric Excel feature that allows you to specify ordered lists of information for virtually any purpose. For instance, a list might include a series of classes or workshops, or it might include a series of employee names. Custom lists can be used when sorting data tables, and they can be used by the AutoFill feature.

How you create a custom list from scratch has been covered in other issues of ExcelTips. Rather than creating a list from scratch, however, you might find it easier to import a list from a series of cells already in your worksheet. Follow these steps:

  1. Display the Excel Options dialog box. (In Excel 2007 click the Office button and then click Excel Options. In Excel 2010 and Excel 2013 display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. If you are using Excel 2007, make sure Popular is selected at the left of the dialog box. If you are using Excel 2010 or Excel 2013, click Advanced and then scroll toward the end of the options until you see the General area.
  3. Click Edit Custom Lists. Excel displays the Custom Lists dialog box and hides the Excel Options dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Custom Lists dialog box.

  5. Click once in the Import List from Cells box.
  6. Either enter the address range that contains the list you want imported, or use the mouse to select the range on the worksheet.
  7. Click Import. The values from the selected cells are listed in the List Entries box.
  8. Click OK to close the Custom Lists dialog box. The Excel Options dialog box reappears.
  9. Click OK to close the Excel Options dialog box.

You can now use the custom list as you would any other custom list in Excel.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (6243) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Importing Custom Lists.

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

Moving Footnote Text into the Document

Need to move the contents of a footnote up into the main body of your document? You can use normal editing techniques to do ...

Discover More

Automatic Selection of Portrait or Landscape

Should you print in portrait or in landscape? The decision can greatly affect the way your printout looks. Wouldn't it be ...

Discover More

Using a Standard Format in a Suggested File Name

Many companies (and some individuals) use specific formats for naming their documents. If you want Word to recognize your ...

Discover More

Program Successfully in Excel! John Walkenbach's name is synonymous with excellence in deciphering complex technical topics. With this comprehensive guide, "Mr. Spreadsheet" shows how to maximize your Excel experience using professional spreadsheet application development tips from his own personal bookshelf. Check out Excel 2013 Power Programming with VBA today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Creating a Sort Order

Excel is very flexible in how it can sort your data. You can even create your own custom sort order that is helpful when ...

Discover More

Sorting a Range of Cells

When you sort data in a worksheet, you don't need to sort everything at once. You can sort just a portion of your data by ...

Discover More

Sorting IP Addresses

If you keep track of IP addresses in an Excel worksheet, you probably already know that it is difficult to sort those ...

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 nine more than 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


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.