One of the most common functions that you will use in Microsoft Excel is to name a cell. The role of naming the cell is simply to provide you with a name to remember rather than a specific cell address like B2 or B3. However, one of the cool functions that Microsoft has incorporated into Microsoft Excel is the ability to name a range of cells and utilize the range when required.
There are a number of approaches that could be undertaken to name a range however the most common technique is to use the menu bar in Microsoft Excel 2003. The first step is to create a basic sheet with some data in it. I have outlined below a small table to enter into a worksheet and the cell location to place the values.
Cell C6: Products Cell D6: Value Cell C7: Shoes Cell D7: $5.00 Cell C8: Pants Cell D8: $15.00 Cell C9: Thongs Cell D9: $23.00
The first step in naming a range is to select the range. Select using your mouse the range from C6 to D9. Once you have completed this go to the Insert menu, then choose Name, and then Define from the expanded menu.
At this point the Define Name dialog box will appear. Type in the Names in Workbook text box the name - MyProducts and then press the OK button. You will notice that in the Refers To text box that your cell range selection has dollar symbols around it. Those dollar symbols inform Microsoft Excel, that on selection of the name you must absolutely refer to those cells. You have now defined a Named Range.
The next step in this process is to use the name range. The easiest way to do this is to first select the cell A1 on your worksheet. Now, goto the Name box on your formula bar and click on the drop down arrow. In the drop down box you will see the name - MyProducts. Simply choose the name. You will now see the cell range automatically selected in your worksheet.
There are many different areas in Microsoft Excel where you would use the Name Range. The most common time is when you want to create drop down lists in your spreadsheet. We use the name range capability, so that we can place the list on a different worksheet to the one we want to reference. Learn Microsoft Excel with one of our self-paced training courses. To find out more visit MS Excel Help Mastery course. Our team also have Microsoft Excel Cheat Sheets available for you to learn your shortcuts just visit Excel Shortcut Keystrokes.