Autofill in Excel makes it easy to continue a pattern of numbers or dates, or lists of days or months. But you can customize your own Autofill list. Here’s how:
You can download the file here and follow along. If you see a preview, look for the download arrow in the upper right hand corner.
Here are some examples of lists that you may have to regularly type in Excel:
Instead of entering these manually time after time, or saving the list and copying it into your worksheet, you can add it as a custom list. Once done, if you type any of the items in that list and use the autofill handle to drag it down, it will continue the sequence from anywhere in the list. You don’t have to start at the top.
There are two ways to add a custom list: Import or Manual:
Import: File=>Options=>Advanced=> Scroll to the bottom and under the General heading, click on the Edit Custom Lists… button:
In the Custom Lists dialog box you will see the pre-programmed lists that Excel provides. To import a previously typed list, click the cell reference button on the right of the “Import list from cells:” field:
Highlight the list from your Excel sheet:
Next click the Import button. Excel will add your list to the List entries box and the Custom Lists box:
Click OK and OK again and now you can type any item from that list and Excel will continue that pattern if you drag down the cell with the Autofill button:
If you ever need to just copy down one item from a custom list and not the pattern, type that item and hold down the Ctrl key while you drag the Autofill button.
Manual: File=>Options=>Advanced=> Scroll to the bottom and under the General heading, click on the Edit Custom Lists… button:
Type your list directly into the “List Entries:” box, hitting Enter after each item. Click Add and you will see your list in the “Custom lists:” box:
Now you can type any of those items and use the Autofill handle to continue that pattern:
Another great feature of Excel!