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5 Easy Ways To Show Formulas In Excel

Key Takeaway:

  • Embed the Equation Editor into Your Worksheet: This technique allows you to directly embed formulas into cells, making it easier to see and edit equations.
  • Make use of Excel’s Insert Function Tool: Using this tool can save time when writing complex formulas by automatically generating the correct syntax.
  • Utilize Excel’s Symbol Tool: This tool enables you to quickly insert special characters, such as Greek symbols, into your formulas without having to search for them online.
  • Speed Up Your Workflow with Keyboard Shortcuts: Learning keyboard shortcuts for frequently used formulas can greatly improve efficiency when working with Excel.
  • Simplify Your Workflow with Paste Special: This tool enables you to copy and paste formulas while preserving their original formatting and adjusting the values as needed.

Struggling to display formulas in Excel? You’re not alone. This article offers five simple yet effective solutions to help you show formulas and save time. Whether you’re a novice or an Excel expert, these tips will make your workflow simpler.

How to Display Formulas in Excel: 5 Simple Techniques

Excel is well-known amongst pros all around the globe. However, mastering it demands technical knowledge and skilful techniques, particularly when it comes to displaying equations. Today, we will explore five easy methods to showcase formulas in Excel. First, we will discuss how to add the equation editor to your sheet. Next, we’ll enter the formula in the equation editor. Lastly, we’ll format the equation for clarity and effective data presentation.

How to Display Formulas in Excel: 5 Simple Techniques-5 Easy Ways to Show Formulas in Excel,

Image credits: by Adam Jones

Embedding the Equation Editor into Your Worksheet

Embedding the equation editor into your worksheet can let you make complex mathematical equations and formulas. Here are three steps to do it:

  1. Click “Insert” in Excel, then select “Object” from the drop-down menu.
  2. In the Object dialog, pick “Microsoft Equation Editor” from the list.
  3. Click “OK” to embed the equation editor into your worksheet.

You can now type out equations directly in your worksheet. The equation editor has buttons for symbols and expressions. You can click the buttons or use keyboard shortcuts to add symbols.

Remember to use parentheses and other grouping symbols correctly when typing out your formula. You can also change font sizes and formatting by highlighting parts of the formula and applying changes.

Embedding the equation editor is easy, but those new to Excel may find it hard to use effectively. One user said that they initially struggled, but eventually found it to be a great tool for making complex models.

Now learn how-to “Type Your Formula into the Equation Editor”.

Typing Your Formula into the Equation Editor

When it comes to Excel, typing formulas into the equation editor is essential. Here’s a three-step guide to get you started:

  1. Click the cell you want to enter the formula in.
  2. Type an equals sign (=) followed by your formula. For example, if adding two numbers together, type =SUM(A1:B1).
  3. Hit enter and the result will show up in the cell.

Remember, you’ll need to use specific formulas for different functions. For example, when finding an average of a set of numbers, you’ll need to use the AVERAGE function instead of SUM.

Plus, if you’re using IF statements or nested functions, using comments within the formula can make it easier to understand later. Lastly, double-check each part of your equation and utilize text-to-columns or other formatting tools for maximum accuracy. After that, your equation will be ready to go!

Formatting Your Equation for Optimal Clarity

Formatting your equation correctly is important in Excel for optimal clarity. Here’s the three-step guide:

  1. Step 1: Choose a cell and click on it.
  2. Step 2: Type = then your formula.
  3. Step 3: Press Ctrl+` (grave accent) to toggle between results and formulas.

For optimal clarity, use parenthesis for order of operations. Break up long equations into smaller parts and label them with clear names. Formatting helps for others viewing the spreadsheet and for yourself when revisiting it.

I learnt this lesson the hard way when working at a large corporation. An Excel file was created by someone else, so I needed to modify formulas. But the cell references were unclear and not organized, resulting in errors throughout the whole spreadsheet. This could’ve been avoided if proper formatting was used.

Lastly, use Excel’s Insert Function Tool for formulas.

Utilizing Excel’s Insert Function Tool

Let’s explore Excel’s insert function tool! This time-saving feature makes complex calculations a breeze. We’ll cover three steps:

  1. How to navigate to the insert function tool
  2. Selecting the correct function for your calculation
  3. Entering accurate arguments

Master these steps and you’ll be an Excel pro!

Utilizing Excel

Image credits: by James Jones

Open Excel and go to the cell where you want to insert the formula.

Click on the “Formulas” tab in the Excel ribbon menu.

In the “Function Library” group, click on “Insert Function”.

This brings up a pop-up window with a list of functions.

Scroll down or use the search box to find the function you need.

Once you have found it, select it and click OK.

These five steps make navigating easy for new users. Using this insert function tool makes work simpler.

Don’t miss out on this essential skill if you like working with data. Now it’s time to select the right function for your calculation.

Selecting the Appropriate Function for Your Calculation

When selecting the right calculation, it’s important to take time and think. Excel has 400+ built-in functions. Check these to see if they match your needs. The Help feature also provides explanations and examples of each function. For basic calculations like summing numbers, use AutoSum! You may need to combine functions too – use nested functions or arrays for this. If none of the built-in functions work, consider writing a User-Defined Function. Excel functions save time & reduce errors. Make life easier – use them!

Entering Accurate Arguments for Your Chosen Function

Accuracy is key when working with Excel functions. Here’s a 3-step guide to help you out:

  1. Choose the Function – Brainstorm the function you want to use; it could be anything from SUM to COUNT, AVERAGE to MAX/MIN, or even more complex functions like IF, LOOKUP or VLOOKUP.
  2. Specify Range/Values – Define the range of cells or values that the function should operate on. Remember, only use cells containing numeric data as non-numeric data will cause an error.
  3. Enter Arguments – Type the necessary arguments and values within parentheses after the name of the chosen function. Make sure each entry is separated by a comma and surrounded by double quotation marks.

Pro Tip – Utilize AutoComplete when entering Excel Functions! Just start typing the name of your chosen function in a cell, press Tab for auto-correction, then press Ctrl + A to open up arguments list and fill them out quickly.

Accurate input parameters are vital for complicated formulas that can be hard to troubleshoot. Additionally, include helpful comments next to or under any formula to prevent confusion when revisiting the document. Developing better habits while understanding the context of the document is essential!

Making Use of Excel’s Symbol Tool

Ever wanted to add a special character or symbol to your Excel sheet? You’re in luck! Here’s the info on how to make the most of the Symbol tool. Learn how to access it, choose the symbol you need, and insert it into your worksheet. After this article, you’ll know how to jazz up your Excel data with symbols in a few simple steps. Let’s do this!

Making Use of Excel

Image credits: by Yuval Washington

Accessing the Symbol Tool for Special Character Insertion

Accessing the Symbol Tool for Special Character Insertion? There are four ways to do it!

  1. Click the symbol from the list.
  2. Double-click any symbol to insert it into the active cell.
  3. Highlight a character and click “Insert”.
  4. Enter a specific code using the number pad.

The Symbol Tool is also handy when typing formulas. Math symbols like plus, minus, divide and multiply can be quickly accessed.

Pro Tip: Add frequently used symbols to your Quick Access Toolbar by right-clicking on the desired symbol and selecting “Add to Quick Access Toolbar.”

To make life easier, learn how to choose the symbol you need. We’ll cover this in the next heading!

Choosing the Symbol That You Need

Select the cell you want to add a symbol to. Go to the “Insert” tab on the ribbon. Choose “Symbols” from the drop-down menu and pick the one you need. Click “Insert.”

Note: Symbols have many uses, like showing currency symbols, mathematical operators or arrows. Excel has a lot of options. Make sure your choice is right for the worksheet. For example, if it’s for currency values, use the correct symbol for each country.

Did you know? Excel also supports Unicode characters. Unicode is a standard computing character set. It means there are even more symbols and characters available for use in Excel!

To place a symbol, go to the Insert tab. Select “Symbols” from the drop-down menu and choose the symbol you need. Click “Insert.”

Placing Your Chosen Symbol in Your Worksheet

  1. Select ‘More Symbols’.
  2. Choose your font and set ‘Subset’ to ‘Mathematics’.
  3. Scroll down or type the symbol’s name in the search bar.
  4. Double-click the symbol or click once and select ‘Insert’.
  5. Close the dialog box by clicking ‘Close’.

Now, the symbol should appear in your worksheet. You can resize it or move it around by dragging. Symbols like Sigma (Σ) for sum, Mu (μ) for average, Delta (∆) for change, etc., help make formulas more readable.

Microsoft Support’s article states there are over a hundred math symbols available in Excel through Unicode codes.

In the next section, we will show you how to Speed Up Your Workflow with Keyboard Shortcuts.

Speeding Up Your Workflow with Keyboard Shortcuts

On my mission to get better at Excel, I found that keyboard shortcuts are the key. In this section, I’ll show you how to quickly work in Excel with shortcuts. These tips are perfect for seasoned Excel users and beginners.

First, I’ll explain how to insert formulas with just a few keystrokes. Then, we’ll go over how to put the formula in the right cell. Lastly, I’ll give tips on formatting the formula for visibility. Mastering these techniques has improved my workflow. Let me show you how they can help you too!

Speeding Up Your Workflow with Keyboard Shortcuts-5 Easy Ways to Show Formulas in Excel,

Image credits: by Harry Washington

Inserting Formulas Quickly with Keyboard Commands


Press the equal sign (=) and type your formula in the cell where you want to add it. You can use the Tab key to move between cells and reference other cells in your formula. Once you’re done typing, press Enter and the calculation will be done for you.

Keyboard shortcuts help you save time and become more efficient with Excel. It may take some practice, but eventually it’ll become second nature. We can’t afford to waste time manually inserting formulas every time we need them, so it’s important to learn how to use keyboard commands to do it quickly. Don’t get left behind while others are speeding through their work!

This article focuses on how to input your formula in the designated cell with ease.

Inputting Your Formula in the Designated Cell

Inputting your formula into a cell is important when using Excel. Follow these steps to do it quickly and accurately!

  1. Select the cell where you want the result to appear.
  2. Start the formula with an = sign.
  3. Enter the first number or cell reference.
  4. Add the math operator (+,-,*,/) for the calculation.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until the formula is complete.
  6. Press Enter to get the result.

When inputting your formula double-check each step. Otherwise, it can cause errors. Use keyboard shortcuts whenever possible. This helps with efficiency and reduces stress on your hands.

Now that we have discussed “Inputting Your Formula,” let’s move on to “Optimizing Your Formula Formatting to Ensure Visibility“.

Optimizing Your Formula Formatting to Ensure Visibility

To make data easier to read, utilize cell background colors to differentiate constants from formulas. Put bold font for headers and subheaders. Adjust column widths to fit larger formulas or numbers and add borders to separate related data. Increase font size for better legibility. Avoid lengthy formulas by breaking them down into smaller pieces.

Ensure that the formula formatting is consistent throughout the whole worksheet or workbook. This will save time in deciphering what each formula means. For instance, I had a colleague who had difficulty adjusting from one spreadsheet to another because of a particular formula’s formatting.

To simplify your workflow, use keyboard shortcuts. The next section explores how this can be done with ‘Paste Special‘.

Simplifying Your Workflow with Paste Special

Excel formulas make complex data analyses easy. But, when you share your worksheet or present findings, it can be tricky. People don’t always see the formulas you’ve used. That’s where Paste Special comes in!

In this section, I’ll show you how to use Paste Special to simplify your workflow. We’ll focus on three topics:

  1. Copying and pasting formulas from other worksheets
  2. Formatting your pasted formula for better readability
  3. Troubleshooting Paste Special errors to prevent mistakes

By the end, you’ll be able to simplify your workflow and make Excel presentations pro-style!

Simplifying Your Workflow with Paste Special-5 Easy Ways to Show Formulas in Excel,

Image credits: by Harry Jones

Copying and Pasting Formulas from Other Worksheets

When copying and pasting formulas from other worksheets, have all your workbooks open. Otherwise, you might get an error message.

Remember that if tables have structured references, a different method is needed.

Copying and Pasting Formulas from Other Worksheets can save time. Follow these steps carefully to avoid issues.

Formatting the formula helps make it easier to read and understand.

Formatting Your Pasted Formula for Optimum Legibility


  1. Copy your formula, then select the cell to paste it.
  2. Click the ‘Paste Special’ button in the Home tab and choose ‘Formulas’.
  3. Resize columns or adjust text size to prevent overlap with other data.
  4. Highlight the formula and adjust font and size to make it more legible.
  5. Use shading or borders to emphasize important parts of the formula.
  6. Formatting depends on preference and context.
  7. Color coding or conditional formatting can be used to highlight negative values, high numbers, etc.
  8. Optimizing legibility can reduce mistakes and streamline workflow. Formatting pasted formulas correctly makes for a more visually appealing workspace and enhances clarity.

Troubleshooting Paste Special Errors to Avoid Mistakes

When using Paste Special in Excel, 5 points should be kept in mind while Troubleshooting errors.

  1. Check the values you’re copying and pasting.
  2. Make sure formulas stay accurate after pasting.
  3. Be aware of formatting when copy-pasting between different sheets or workbooks.
  4. Restart Excel or your computer if experiencing persistent errors.
  5. Lastly, double-check settings before executing paste operations, as corrections could be hard to make.

Creating a checklist with these points can save time by reducing errors and preventing troubleshooting.

Five Interesting Facts About 5 Easy Ways to Show Formulas in Excel:

  • ✅ One easy way to show formulas in Excel is to use the shortcut “Ctrl + `” (grave accent). (Source: Microsoft Office Support)
  • ✅ Another way to show formulas in Excel is to switch to the “Formula Auditing” mode. (Source: Excel Easy)
  • ✅ The “Show Formulas” button can also be used to display formulas in Excel. (Source: TechRepublic)
  • ✅ Displaying formulas in Excel can help users check their calculations for accuracy and troubleshoot errors. (Source: Lifewire)
  • ✅ Showing formulas in Excel can also be helpful when trying to understand how a complex spreadsheet is built. (Source: Business Insider)

FAQs about 5 Easy Ways To Show Formulas In Excel

1. What are the 5 easy ways to show formulas in Excel?

The 5 easy ways to show formulas in Excel are: using the formula bar, turning on the Show Formulas feature, using the shortcut key combination CTRL + ` (grave accent), using the Evaluate Formula feature, and using the View Formulas button in the Formula Auditing group.

2. How do I use the formula bar to show formulas in Excel?

To use the formula bar to show formulas in Excel, click on the cell that contains the formula, and then look at the formula bar located above the worksheet. The formula bar displays the contents of the cell, including the formula.

3. How do I turn on the Show Formulas feature in Excel?

To turn on the Show Formulas feature in Excel, go to the Formulas tab on the ribbon and click on the Show Formulas button. This will display all the formulas in the worksheet.

4. What is the shortcut key to show formulas in Excel?

The shortcut key to show formulas in Excel is CTRL + ` (grave accent). This will toggle between showing the formulas and showing the results of the formulas.

5. Can I evaluate a formula to see its result in Excel?

Yes, you can evaluate a formula to see its result in Excel. Go to the Formulas tab on the ribbon and click on Evaluate Formula in the Formula Auditing group. This will open the Evaluate Formula dialog box where you can step through the formula to see its result.

6. Where is the View Formulas button located in Excel?

The View Formulas button is located in the Formula Auditing group on the Formulas tab of the ribbon in Excel. Clicking on this button will display all the formulas in the worksheet.