How to Open JSON File in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

Opening a JSON file in Excel might sound like a daunting task, but it’s actually pretty straightforward. By using Excel’s built-in features, you can easily import JSON data, format it, and analyze it like a pro. This guide will walk you through the process, step by step, ensuring you understand each part clearly. Ready? Let’s dive in!

How to Open JSON File in Excel

In the following steps, you’ll learn how to open a JSON file in Excel and transform it into a readable and editable format.

Step 1: Open Excel

First, open Microsoft Excel on your computer.

Make sure you’re using a version that supports JSON file imports. Most modern versions of Excel, including Excel 2016 and later, have this capability.

Step 2: Navigate to the ‘Data’ Tab

Click on the ‘Data’ tab located at the top of the Excel window.

The ‘Data’ tab provides options to import different types of data, including JSON files. This is where the magic starts.

Step 3: Click ‘Get Data’

Under the ‘Data’ tab, click on ‘Get Data.’

This option lets you pull data from various sources. It’s a one-stop shop for all your data importing needs.

Step 4: Choose ‘From File’ > ‘From JSON’

Select ‘From File’ and then ‘From JSON’ from the dropdown menu.

This will open a file dialog box where you can navigate to and select your JSON file.

Step 5: Locate and Open Your JSON File

Find your JSON file on your computer, select it, and then click ‘Open.’

Excel will read the file and prepare to import the data. It might take a few moments, depending on the file size.

Step 6: Transform Data as Needed

Once Excel imports your JSON file, you might need to transform or format the data.

Excel will display the data in a table format. You can use Excel’s tools to filter, sort, and analyze the data as you see fit.

When you complete these steps, your data will be neatly organized in Excel, ready for analysis or further manipulation.

Tips for Opening JSON File in Excel

  • Check Excel Version: Make sure you are using a version of Excel that supports JSON file imports.
  • Preview Data: Before importing, preview your JSON file in a text editor to understand its structure.
  • Use Power Query: Power Query in Excel can help you transform and clean your data after importing.
  • Save a Backup: Always save a backup of your original JSON file before making any changes.
  • Practice Regularly: The more you practice, the easier it will become to import and manage JSON data in Excel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I open a JSON file in older versions of Excel?

Older versions of Excel might not support JSON file imports directly. You may need to convert the JSON file to CSV or use a third-party tool.

Is there a file size limit for importing JSON files in Excel?

Yes, Excel has a file size limit. Large JSON files might cause performance issues or fail to import entirely.

What if my JSON file is not formatted correctly?

Excel may have trouble importing improperly formatted JSON files. Use a JSON validator to check and correct the format.

Can I automate the JSON import process in Excel?

Yes, you can use VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) to automate the import process, especially if you need to do it frequently.

How do I handle nested JSON data in Excel?

Nested JSON data can be challenging. Excel’s Power Query can help you flatten and transform nested structures into a tabular format.


  1. Open Excel.
  2. Navigate to the ‘Data’ tab.
  3. Click ‘Get Data.’
  4. Choose ‘From File’ > ‘From JSON.’
  5. Locate and open your JSON file.
  6. Transform data as needed.


Opening a JSON file in Excel is a useful skill that can help you manage and analyze data more efficiently. Whether you’re dealing with a small dataset or a massive JSON file, these steps will guide you through the process smoothly. Practice makes perfect, so don’t hesitate to experiment and explore Excel’s powerful data import features.

By following these steps, you’ll master the art of importing JSON files into Excel in no time. For further reading, consider exploring Excel’s Power Query features or looking into VBA for automation. Remember, the key to becoming proficient with Excel is consistent practice and a willingness to dive into its myriad of functionalities. Happy data crunching!

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