Creating PivotTables

Use pivot tables in Excel for stronger data analysis. This Excel pivot table tutorial also helps you summarize data.

Using a PivotTable

Video: PivotTables in Excel 2010: Part 1

Launch video!Watch the video (4:16).

When you have a lot of data, it can sometimes be difficult to analyze it all. A PivotTable summarizes the data, making it easier to manage. Best of all, you can quickly and easily change the PivotTable to see the data in a different way, making it an extremely powerful tool.

Video: PivotTables in Excel 2010: Part 2

Launch video!Watch the video (2:59).

Optional: You can download this example for extra practice.

Using a PivotTable to answer questions

The example below contains sales statistics for a fictional company. There is a row for each order, and it includes the order amount, name of the salesperson who made the sale, month, sales region, and customer account number.

Company Sales StatisticsCompany Sales Statistics

Let's say we wanted to answer the question What is the amount sold by each salesperson? This could be time consuming because each salesperson appears on multiple rows, and we would need to add all of the order amounts for each salesperson. Of course, we could use the Subtotal feature to add them, but we would still have a lot of data to sift through.

Luckily, a PivotTable can instantly do all of the math for us and summarize the data in a way that's not only easy to read but also easy to manipulate. When we're done, the PivotTable will look something like this:

A finished PivotTableA finished PivotTable

As you can see, the PivotTable is much easier to read. It only takes a few steps to create one, and once you create it you'll be able to take advantage of its powerful features.