Excel Tip – Advanced Select Using Find

It’s already the 2nd week in March and I’m running soooo late with my ‘Keep it Simple’ tip!
But I promise it’s worth waiting for!
This month it is a really lovely Excel tip that will allow us to, when suitable, bypass using a Filter!
You can view the video or follow the step-by-step shown underneath.

Enjoy and remember: Keep it Simple!


I want to highlight all the cells with the words ‘Item 2‘ written in to them.
Highlight all cells containing the words 'Item 2' in the dataset
In a large data set, I would probably set up a filter; but I’m going to do this using the Find feature.

Step 1

  • This time I do NOT need to be clicked into the data set – or to have anything selected.
  • To open Find you can use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + F.

Use CTRL + F to open Find

  • Or – you can click on the Find & Select button – then click on Find in the menu.

Find & Select button - then Find

Step 2

  • Type in ‘Item 2‘ into the Find What box (note that it’s not case sensitive).
  • Then click on the Find All button.

Type in the text 'Item 2' and press the Find All button

  • You can see that it’s picked up 5 cells containing that text.

Shows that 5 cells have been selected

Step 3

  • I could scroll down and use the SHIFT key to select them.
  • But I’m going to use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + A to do the same.

Use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + A to select all

  • Once they are selected, I can click the Close button.
  • Then I can go ahead and put on the Fill Colour or whatever it is that I want to do to that selection.

Show selecting a Fill Colour to fill all the selected cells at the same time


Thank you for watching and I’ll be back with another useful ‘Keep it Simple‘ tip – next month (hopefully on time)!

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