Entering and Editing Data

Basic formatting in Excel can customize the look and feel of your Excel spreadsheet. Learn about formatting cells in Excel here.

Entering data

You can enter three types of data in a worksheet: text, numbers, and formulas. Text is any entry that is not a number or formula. Numbers are values that are used when making calculations. Formulas are calculations.

To enter data into a cell:

  • Click the cell.
  • Begin typing the data.
  • An insertion point appears, and the text you are entering appears in the active cell and in the Formula bar.

Formula Bar

  • The Formula bar buttons—Cancel and Enter—appear.
  • Clicking the Enter button Enter button ends the entry and turns off the Formula bar buttons.

Enter Text

To delete data:

  • Click the cell.


  • Click the Cancel button Cancel Button to delete an entry and turn off the Formula bar buttons.


  • Cancel an entry by pressing the Escape key.


  • Right-click and choose Clear Contents from the shortcut menu.


  • Select data and press Delete or Enter.

Important pointExcel’s AutoComplete feature keeps track of text entered in a column and can complete other entries in the same column. For example, if you typed GCFLearnFree.org in cell A1 and enter G in A2, Excel automatically fills the cell with GCFLearnFree.org. If GCF Global Learning is the text you want to enter, press Enter or Tab to move to the next cell. If it’s not what you want, just keep typing until you overwrite the AutoComplete feature.