How to Reverse the Order of a Column in Excel: Step-by-Step Guide

Reversing the order of a column in Excel is a useful skill that can save you tons of time. Whether you’re dealing with a list of names, dates, or any other type of data, this guide will show you how to flip that column upside down with ease. We’ll walk you through the steps so you can get it done quickly and efficiently.

How to Reverse the Order of a Column in Excel

This tutorial will guide you through the process of reversing the order of a column in Excel. By following these steps, you’ll be able to sort any data column from top to bottom or vice versa.

Step 1: Open Your Excel Document

First things first, you need to open your Excel document where the column you want to reverse is located.

Make sure you are in the correct sheet before proceeding. This prevents any mix-ups, especially if you have multiple sheets with similar data.

Step 2: Insert a Helper Column

Insert a new column next to the column you want to reverse. This will be your “helper” column.

A helper column acts as a reference, making the reversal process smoother. You can insert a new column by right-clicking on the column header and selecting "Insert."

Step 3: Number the Helper Column

In the helper column, number each row sequentially from 1 to the last row of your data.

This step is crucial because the numbers will serve as a guide for reversing your data. To do this quickly, enter 1 in the first cell and drag the fill handle to automatically number the rest.

Step 4: Sort by Helper Column

Sort your data by the numbers in the helper column in descending order.

Click on the Data tab, select "Sort," and choose the helper column. Make sure to sort in descending order so that the highest number appears first.

Step 5: Remove the Helper Column

Once your original column is reversed, you can delete the helper column.

Right-click on the helper column header and select "Delete." Your main column should now be in reversed order.

After you complete these steps, your column will be reversed. The top row will now be the bottom row and vice versa.

Tips for Reversing the Order of a Column in Excel

  • Always make a copy of your worksheet before making changes.
  • Use the "Undo" button if you make a mistake.
  • Double-check that you’re sorting the correct column.
  • Save your work frequently to avoid losing data.
  • If you have complex data, consider using Excel’s built-in sorting features.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I reverse multiple columns at once?

Yes, you can. Just apply the same steps to each column, using separate helper columns if needed.

Do I need to use a helper column every time?

No, but it’s the simplest method for most users. Advanced users might use Excel formulas or VBA scripts.

What if I make a mistake?

You can always use the "Undo" button (Ctrl + Z) to reverse your last action.

Will sorting affect my formulas?

It might. Always review any formulas connected to your data before and after sorting.

Can I reverse a row instead of a column?

Yes, but the steps are different. You would need to transpose your data first.


  1. Open your Excel document.
  2. Insert a helper column.
  3. Number the helper column.
  4. Sort by the helper column.
  5. Remove the helper column.


Reversing the order of a column in Excel is a straightforward task once you know the steps. By inserting a helper column, numbering it, and sorting based on these numbers, you can easily flip your data. This method ensures that your original data remains intact and makes the process much simpler. Always remember to save your work and double-check your data to avoid any hiccups. If you found this guide helpful, consider exploring other Excel tutorials to further enhance your spreadsheet skills. The more you practice, the more confident you’ll become in managing your data efficiently. Happy Excel-ing!

Get Our Free Newsletter

How-to guides and tech deals

You may opt out at any time.
Read our Privacy Policy