How to group rows in Excel under a heading (3 methods)

Sometimes you may work with large worksheets containing very detailed information. Such worksheets may be hard to read, analyze or visualize  therefore calling out the need to organize your worksheet. In Excel, this is possible as you can organize your data by combining subcategory data. You can group rows to enable one to easily understand Excel reports as the various unwanted numbers of rows will be hidden.

Here, we guide you on how to group rows in Excel under a heading.

Steps to follow to group rows automatically

Follow these steps when you want to group your worksheet rows if  the data contains only one information level. Here is what to do:

1. Select a cell or range

2. Click on the Data window on the main menu ribbon.

3. Under the Outline group, click on the drop-down arrow on the Group

4. Click the option Auto Outline


Group rows by using the keyboard shortcut key

You can also group your Excel data under a heading using a keyboard shortcut.

Here, you will press Shift ,Alt  plus Right Key to group your data.

Before doing this, you will select the rows that need to be grouped.

To expand or collapse the outlined data, use the plus (+) or (-) outline symbols. Apart from this, you can use the keyboard shortcut Alt + Shift + = to expand your grouped data or Alt + Shift + – to collapse your rows


With the method above, you will need to each row of data individually rather than collectively like the method above.

Grouping data together manually in Excel

Incase  Excel worksheet contains a lot of information levels, you may find that Auto Outline doesn’t classify the data the right way. Here, you can group your data manually by following these steps:

1. In an open Excel, go to the worksheet that contains the data you want to group.

2. Select the rows that you want to group.

3. Click on the Data window on the main menu.

4. Under the Outline , click on the Group

5. In the pop-up window that opens up, select the Rows option to group your data by rows.

6. Click the OK Afterward, you will notice your data has been grouped. A bar will be added on the left side of your worksheet, spanning the selected rows.


When you create an outline manually, you first have to ensure that your dataset does not contain any hidden rows to avoid incorrect grouping.

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