Transposing Rows and Columns in Excel

By June 3, 2019 Tech Tip

What’s transposing in Excel? “To transpose” means to make items change places with each other, or to flip a grid or table such that columns become rows and rows become columns.

This may be a little hard to grasp, but it’s something that you may frequently want to do in Excel: How do you take values in a row and flip them so that those values are stacked in a column? (Or vice versa.) The answer is transposing them. This is how.

Transposing in Excel

Say you have data in rows, like this, and you want these names to be moved into a column.

Tranposing Rows & Columns in Excel

  1. Select and highlight all the values you want to transpose.
  2. Copy the values (Ctrl + C).
  3. Select the cell where you want to insert the values as a column.
  4. Right click and from the menu choose Paste Options > Transpose. If you do not see the Transpose icon, choose Paste Special… > Transpose.Tranposing Rows & Columns in Excel

Then your values will be pasted, but into a column, rather than the original row.

Tranposing Rows & Columns in Excel

You can do the same thing to move a column to a row, or even to flip an entire table, as in this example, where the Y axis becomes the X axis.

Tranposing Rows & Columns in Excel

Transposing may be a little hard to wrap your head around at first (how is the data flipping?), but it can be very helpful in manipulating data once you get the hang of it.


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