How to Add Drop Down List in Excel

Excel’s drop-down lists are a time-saving tool for selecting from a pool of predetermined options. By doing this, you can save the time-consuming task of keying the information into a spreadsheet by hand. Many tasks, such as filling out a form, are well-suited to the use of drop-down lists.

In this article, you will learn how to make a drop-down list in Excel.

Create a Drop-Down List by Selecting a Range of Cells

Using a range, which pulls information from other cells, is by far the most frequent method for making a drop-down list in Excel with numerous options.

Step 1: Choose a column where you want to include the data that will be shown in the accompanying drop-down list. This information can come from a different spreadsheet, or it can be taken directly from the one housing the drop-down menu (add a new spreadsheet at the bottom). Choosing the latter will result in a more polished, organized, and less chaotic primary spreadsheet.

Step 2 fill out the column with your data, using a separate cell for each piece of information.

To populate a drop-down list in Excel, one must enter the possible options.

Step 3: Select the cell where you want the drop-down list to appear.

Picking the Excel cell that will house the drop-down menu.

Step 4: \sGo to the Data tab and pick the Data validation button or choose Data validation from the drop-down menu.

Excel’s data-checking tool, “Data Validation.”

Fifth, pick “List” from the Permit pull-down option. An arrow will be placed on the margin of the Source field. Select that Arrow.

The List Option Within the Allow Menu on Microsoft Excel.

Step 6: \ You’ll be directed back to your spreadsheet’s primary page. From here, just choose the range of cells by dragging the cursor from the first cell down to wherever your last cell is located.

Select a range of cells for a drop-down list on Microsoft Excel.

Step 7: \sIn the Data validation mini pop-up window, select the Arrow button. ​​The Source bar will include the complete cell range that you pick in the above steps. If OK appears, click it.

You will now have a drop-down list menu positioned in the cell you specified from step 3. The selection of cells for the drop-down menu, as shown in the Source bar.

Formulate a select menu by keying in options manually.

Excel has several options for making drop-down lists. This is the simplest approach, and it works great for lists that won’t need to be updated frequently or for those who are just getting started with Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.

First, choose the column cell where you’d like to enter the drop-down menu.

The second step is to click the Data Validation button or pick Data validation from the submenu that appears when you click the Data tab.

Third, select List from the Allow option in the new window that just appeared.

Four, specify in the Source area what you’d like to appear in the pull-down menu. Put a comma after each item in the list.

The Source field for a drop-down list in Excel must be updated by hand.

Five, click the OK button.

A drop-down menu, containing all the data you input in Step 4, will appear in the cell you chose in Step 1.

Show a notification when the pull-down menu is chosen.

Make your drop-down list more user-friendly by including a prompt for user input once it has been built.

First, click on the cell that contains the menu drop-down. Then, bring up the Data validation prompt again.

Proceed to Step 2 and click the Input message tab. Put in a descriptive title and the text you want to appear when the menu is expanded. There’s a 225-character cap on snippets you can add here.

Having Excel shows a message when you select an option from a list.

Step 3: Pick “OK” to apply the message.

The error has been displayed.

You can put a message explaining the function of the drop-down list, and you can also show an error message if a user attempts to add text or data that isn’t recognized by the list.

The first thing you need to do is go to the cell where your drop-down menu is located and select it. To achieve this, reopen the Data validation window, click the Error Alert tab, and check the Show error alert after invalid data is entered in the box.

Type in a personalized subject line and body. Should the title or text boxes be left empty, Excel will apply a default message.

Preparing an error message for a drop-down list in Microsoft Excel by entering the necessary information.

Step 2: Choose a style from the ones presented, such as Stop (X), and select OK.

Other options in the Style menu include Information and Warning, both of which display a message but do not prohibit people from inputting incorrect data. Each alternative has its own distinct style.

Displaying an error alert for a drop-down list on Microsoft Excel.

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Protect Your Drop-Down List

You can lock the cells containing the drop-down list’s data so no one else can see or change it.

First, locate the column containing the information you submitted for the drop-down menu. Now you may lock the cells to prevent any illegal changes from being made.

After you’ve selected the area you want to lock, go to the Home tab.

Step 2: Within the Alignment section, select the Small arrow at the bottom right to open the Format cells window. Go to the tab labeled Protection, check the box labeled Locked, and then click OK.

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Locked Option Checked.

3. Select Protect sheet or Protect workbook from the Review menu. Make the necessary changes, and then click OK.

Microsoft Excel’s cell-locking Protect Worksheet feature.

Excel’s drop-down list is a time-saving tool for data entry. For more, take a look at these extra Excel tips and techniques.

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