ICAEW.com works better with JavaScript enabled.

10 must-read tips for designing and formatting your spreadsheets

Author: Excel Community

Published: 03 Feb 2023

Exclusive content
Access to our exclusive resources is for specific groups of students, users, subscribers and members.

Welcome to the Excel Community! To help you get the most out of the community content, we've rounded up 10 top articles, drawing on content from years gone by, to help you master the design and format of your spreadsheets.

  1. What's in a name?
    Important but often overlooked: rules for good spreadsheet names.
  2. Creating a good landing page
    Landing in a larger Excel workbook for the first time can be pretty disorienting. A good ‘About’ sheet can be a lifesaver!
  3. Isolating your inputs
    Learn more about a time-saving technique to help speed up month-end reporting.
  4. Ticks and crosses
    Try out the easiest ways to add ticks to Excel (and Google Sheets).
  5. Why merging cells sucks
    The most common pet hate of spreadsheet experts everywhere: merged cells.
  6. Mastering number formats
    Don’t underestimate the importance of number formats, especially when working with financial data!
  7. Less-known formatting options
    A whistle-stop tour of less-known, but nonetheless useful formatting options for your spreadsheets.
  8. Conditional formatting: colouring a whole row
    Create custom rules that will colour an entire row when a specific condition is met in one particular cell.
  9. Conditional formatting: two heads are better
    Learn how conditional formatting can be best used in practice.
  10. The Accessibility Checker
    Make your spreadsheets easier to use and understand, with the Accessibility Checker tool.
Archive and Knowledge Base

This archive of Excel Community content from the ION platform will allow you to read the content of the articles but the functionality on the pages is limited. The ION search box, tags and navigation buttons on the archived pages will not work. Pages will load more slowly than a live website. You may be able to follow links to other articles but if this does not work, please return to the archive search. You can also search our Knowledge Base for access to all articles, new and archived, organised by topic.