How to Arrange Date in Ascending Order in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Arranging Dates in Ascending Order in Excel

Sorting dates in ascending order in Excel is a simple task that can help you organize your data in a meaningful way. With just a few steps, you can easily arrange your dates from the earliest to the latest, making it easier to analyze trends or track events over time.

Step-by-Step Tutorial: How to Arrange Dates in Ascending Order in Excel

In this tutorial, we’ll walk you through the process of sorting dates in ascending order in Excel. Follow these steps to get your dates sorted quickly and accurately.

Step 1: Open Your Excel File

First, open the Excel file that contains the date data you want to sort.

Once your file is open, make sure all the dates you want to sort are in the same column. This will make the sorting process smoother and more efficient.

Step 2: Select the Dates

Click and drag to select the cells that contain the dates you want to sort.

Ensure you have selected only the cells with dates. If you accidentally select other data, it might interfere with the sorting process and give you incorrect results.

Step 3: Go to the Data Tab

Navigate to the "Data" tab on the Excel ribbon, located at the top of the screen.

The "Data" tab contains various sorting and filtering options that are essential for managing your data. Familiarizing yourself with this tab can make other tasks easier in the future.

Step 4: Click on the Sort Oldest to Newest Button

In the "Data" tab, find the "Sort & Filter" group, then click on the "Sort Oldest to Newest" button (represented by an A-Z icon with an arrow pointing down).

This button will immediately sort your selected dates in ascending order, from the earliest to the latest.

Step 5: Confirm Your Sorting

Check your selected column of dates to ensure they are now arranged in ascending order.

If the dates are not sorted correctly, you might need to repeat the process or check for any formatting issues with your date cells.

Once you’ve followed these steps, your dates should be neatly arranged in ascending order. This will help you better understand your data set and make more informed decisions.

Tips: Arranging Dates in Ascending Order in Excel

  • Ensure Date Formatting: Before sorting, make sure all cells are formatted as dates. Sometimes dates are stored as text, which can mess up the sorting.
  • Check for Blanks: Remove any blank cells within your date column, as these can interfere with the sorting process.
  • Use Filters: If you have a large dataset, use filters to isolate and sort specific date ranges without affecting the entire column.
  • Shortcut Keys: Use keyboard shortcuts like Alt + D + S to quickly access sorting options.
  • Save Your Work: Always save your file before and after making changes to avoid any loss of data.

Frequently Asked Questions: Arranging Dates in Ascending Order in Excel

Why aren’t my dates sorting correctly?

If your dates are not sorting correctly, they might be stored as text. Ensure all cells are formatted as dates.

How do I format cells as dates?

Select the cells, right-click, choose "Format Cells," select "Date," and choose your desired date format.

Can I sort dates in descending order?

Yes, you can sort dates in descending order by clicking the "Sort Newest to Oldest" button in the "Data" tab.

What if my dates are in different columns?

If your dates are in different columns, you need to consolidate them into one column for accurate sorting.

Will sorting affect other data in my spreadsheet?

Sorting will only affect the selected range of cells. If other data is linked or part of the selection, it will also be sorted.


  1. Open your Excel file.
  2. Select the dates.
  3. Go to the Data tab.
  4. Click on the Sort Oldest to Newest button.
  5. Confirm your sorting.


There you have it—a simple yet effective method for arranging dates in ascending order in Excel. This process is straightforward, but it can significantly enhance your ability to analyze and understand your data. Remember to ensure your dates are properly formatted, remove any blank cells, and save your work frequently to avoid any mishaps.

Whether you’re managing a small personal project or handling a vast dataset for work, sorting dates can be a crucial step in organizing your information efficiently. Now that you’ve mastered this basic skill, you might want to explore more advanced Excel features, like conditional formatting or pivot tables, to further optimize your data management. Happy sorting!

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