Move a Row(s) and Column(s) in Excel

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- Written by Puneet

In Excel, sometimes you may need to move a row and column to change its order in the worksheet. It even helps you rectify the errors from the sheet and increase its readability. In this tutorial, we will look at various methods to move a row and column.

Steps to Move a Row in Excel

You can easily move a row without overwriting on the existing row, press and hold the Shift key.

  1. Firstly, select the row that you want to move up or down.
    move-row
  2. Then, move your cursor to the edge of the row and you will see the icon with four-sided arrows.
  3. Now, while holding the Shift key and left button of the mouse together drag the selected row to the desired location.
  4. When you will find the right point for the row, then release the shift key and mouse click.

In the below picture, row 7 is moved to row 5, and the existing row 5 automatically moves down.

moved-row

Steps to Move a Column

To quickly move a column in Excel use the below steps.

  1. Select the column first that you want to move in the worksheet.
  2. Next, hover over the cursor to the border of the selected column and now the four-sided arrow appears there.
  3. After that, press and hold the Shift key and the mouse left button at once.
  4. Now, drag the cursor to the new position where you would like to relocate the column.

In the below example, we are observing the Student Section A column is moving in place of Section B.

column-A-moves-to-the-place-column-B

Move Multiple Rows

If you want to move multiple rows together, you can do it easily, and here, are the steps for this.

  1. For this, again you have to select all those rows in a sequence that you want to move, and you can select rows by dragging the mouse over them.
    select-multiple-rows
  2. After that, move the mouse pointer to the edge of one of the selected rows.
  3. Now, you can drag the rows upwards to the point where you want to move them while holding the Shift key.

As you can see that the selected rows 5,6,7 are moved upwards to 2,3,4 and the original rows are shifted down.

multiple-rows-moved

Points to Remember

  • In the case of multiple rows, you can only move adjacent rows up or down. However, this method is not applied to multiple non-adjacent rows.
  • And, without holding the shift key, it will overwrite the rows instead of moving them.

Move Multiple Columns in Excel

To move multiple columns, without overwriting the existing data.

  1. Select two or more columns by dragging the cursor over the column headers.
  2. Then, place your cursor on the border of one of the selected columns and now the arrow exists that helps to drag the columns.
  3. Move the cursor to a new location while holding the Shift key and the left mouse button.

In the below example, the student’s name columns move forward to the subjects.

Move a Row by Cut and Paste

The easiest way to move a row is to use the cut-and-paste method.

  1. Select the row by its header and then right-click on it and click on the cut option.
    move-row-by-cut-and-paste
  2. Once you click on it, the row is highlighted in green color.
    highlighted-row
  3. Next, click on the row where you want to move this selected row.
    click-the-row
  4. Here, right-click on it and select the Insert cut cells option from the pop-up box.
    select-the-insert-cut-cells
  5. Last, you will see the selected row moves up and the original row moves down.
    selected-row-moved-up

Move a Column by Cut and Paste

  1. First of all, select the column that you want to move by its header and select the “Cut” option by right-clicking on it.
  2. You can see now that the column highlights with the green color.
  3. Now, click on the column where you want to move this and choose the “Insert cut cells” option by right-clicking.
  4. And, you will see the selected column of section A shift its position, and the students of section B moves to the next column.

Note: By this method, you can even move a row or column to the other sheet on the workbook, by using the insert cut cell option.

Move a Row in Excel (Replace)

  1. First, select the entire row from the row number that you want to move up.
    select-the-entire-row
  2. After that, place your cursor on the edge of the row header and it would show you an icon with four-sided arrows.
  3. Next, hold the left button of the mouse and drag the row to the point where you want to move, and it highlights with green color.
    drag-the-row
  4. Once you drag the row to another row that has data already, then you will see the pop-up on the window with a question about replacing it.
    pop-up-on-replacing-row
  5. Now, when you click OK then it will replace the row and the existing position of the row remain empty.
    replaced-the-existing-row

Move a Column by Replacing

  1. Select the column that you wish to move to the new position.
  2. Move your cursor at the border of the column and there you’ll see the four-sided arrow.
  3. Now, press and hold the left button of the mouse and drag the column by an arrow where you want to place it, and that column highlights with green color.
  4. If there is already data in the column, then it will ask you to replace it by showing a pop-up.
  5. When you click the “Ok” button, then it replaces the column, and the previous place of the column remains blank now.

Important: If you are moving a row or column to an empty row, Excel will not display that pop-up box on the window. It will simply move the data to the empty row or column.

Last Updated: October 29, 2023