Create a drop down list in Excel

It goes without saying that Excel is one of the most used programs for handling data. It offers various features and advantages, which will help you to work with and manipulate from a couple of cells to a huge tables, including thousands of elements. On the whole, your options are numerous as you can write formulas, include images, tables, and any written form of data. There are some features which tend to stand out from the rest and be used daily by both professionals and beginners. An example is the drop down list in Excel. It is basically a set of elements, provided by you, from which you can choose later. Well, even though it is an extremely vital tool, the process of creating one is not very easy, especially for people with lower experience. Thus, in order to create a drop down list, follow the steps in the guide below and very soon you will know how to build one on your own.

Step 1 - Open Excel and create a new document.

To get started, what you need to do is open Microsoft Excel on your machine and create a new document, using the menu provided.

Step 2 - Fill in what you will need for the drop down list.

Choose a column in which you want your list to appear, it does not matter. After that simply enter a number of elements that you want to be included. Keep in mind that they all have to be in a different cell but in the same column.

Step 3 - Select and name your drop down list

Select all of the cells that include information, which you need and then choose “Define Name” from the Insert menu. A new window will pop up, asking you to enter the name for your list. Fill in something appropriate and click “OK”.

Step 4 - Decide on which cell will be holding the drop down menu.

All you have to do in this step is to actually select the cell, which will be keeping the list. Go over it and click once.

Step 5 - Data Validation

In the menu on the top of your screen, first click on “Data” and then on “Data Validation”. Another window will appear on your screen, asking you to set some properties of the selected field.   What you have to do first is in the “Settings” tab under the drop down menu “Allow”, choose “List”.

Step 6 - More properties

Navigate to the “Source” box and enter the name of your list that you have chosen in step step 3, beginning with an equal sign. For example, “=Cars”. Also, make sure that “Ignore blank” and “In-cell dropdown” are checked.

Step 7 - “Error Alert”

Open the “Error Alert” tab and check “Show error alert after invalid data is entered” if not already checked. Afterwards, go ahead and click on “OK”. And just like that you made drop down list in Excel.

You might find this video helpful:

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