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How to Use Paste Special in Excel

Learn how to use paste special in this Howcast Excel tutorial with expert Shir Moscovitz.


Hi, my name is Shir and I'm the founder and CEO of where we focus on converting the existing data from your business into massive savings and extraordinary profits. Today we're going to learn the basics of Excel. Let's get started.

So now that you know how to do a regular COPY and PASTE, let's take it to the next level with PASTE SPECIAL. First thing we're going to do is select the data we want to COPY, we're going to do CTRL+C and we're going to do - instead of a regular CTRL+V PASTE - we're going to do CTRL and ALT and V which brings us to PASTE SPECIAL. We have a whole bunch of options here. I'm going to give you the most valuable ones which are Formulas, Values, and then we're going to do Paste Link and Transpose. You can check out each one of these and see what they do on your own. And there'll actually pretty cool.

For now, let's go through Formulas. If I choose Formulas what happens is instead of PASTING the entire contents and Formatting, it just takes the Formulas. So now I have this exact same Formula that was in here but I have it over here with a Reference change which we'll go over later.

Let's take another example and we'll go instead of just the Formulas, let's take the Values. I'm going to do CTRL+ALT+V and I'm going to PASTE only the Values. And that brings us just these numbers. I'm going to hit ESC to get out this. So as you see there's no formatting whatsoever with this which is pretty useful if you want to take these numbers which are actually Formulas and use the Values somewhere else.

Next, we'll do some Transposing. We'll copy this information over here and we're going to click our desired PASTE spot - CTRL+ALT+V - and Transpose a horizontal arrangement as opposed to a vertical one. I'm going to expand the selection and AUTOFIT the COLUMN widths so we can see all the numbers. I'm going to hit ESC to get out of that. So if you have a huge list of vertical numbers that you want to make horizontal or vice versa, you can use the Transpose option. You can do the same thing here. Copy this and if I want it to be vertical I click anywhere else - CTRL+ATL+V - and I hit Transpose. I can also use the ALT+E to get to this shortcut and then I can hit OK or press enter on the keyboard which brings me to the vertical list.

Last but not least let's do - I'm going to ESC out of this - last but not least let's do the PASTE LINK. I'm going to take all this information over here. Copy it. Move to a completely different WORKSHEET. Do a PASTE SPECIAL and I'm going to PASTE the LINK. So now what's going to happen is not only are these numbers here but there also linked back to the previous WORKSHEET.
So if I change a number here from 101 to a bunch of 9's that will show here as well. So it's linked together. And those are some things you can use PASTE SPECIAL for in EXCEL.

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