How to Sort Table Alphabetically in Word: A Step-by-Step Guide

Sorting a table alphabetically in Word may seem daunting, but it’s actually quite simple. All it takes is a few clicks! Whether you’re organizing a list of names, items, or any other data, this quick guide will show you how to do it efficiently.

Step by Step Tutorial for Sorting a Table Alphabetically in Word

Before we dive into the steps, let’s clarify what we’ll achieve here. By following the steps below, you’ll be able to sort any table in your Word document alphabetically, either from A to Z or Z to A, depending on your preference.

Step 1: Select the table

Click anywhere inside the table you want to sort.

Selecting the table is crucial because it tells Word exactly where to apply the alphabetical sorting. If you have multiple tables, be sure to click in the one you want to sort.

Step 2: Go to the "Layout" tab

After selecting the table, the "Layout" tab will appear in the ribbon. Click on it.

The "Layout" tab is part of the Table Tools in Word. It contains various options for adjusting the appearance and organization of your table.

Step 3: Click on "Sort"

In the "Data" group of the "Layout" tab, you will find the "Sort" button. Click on it.

The "Sort" button opens a dialog box where you can specify how you want to sort your table.

Step 4: Choose your sorting options

In the "Sort" dialog box, select the column you wish to sort by and choose whether to sort in ascending (A to Z) or descending (Z to A) order.

Typically, you’ll sort by the first column, but Word allows you to sort by any column in your table.

Step 5: Click "OK"

After setting your sorting preferences, click "OK" to apply the sorting to the table.

Once you click "OK," Word will instantly sort your table according to the options you chose.

After completing these steps, your table will be neatly sorted in alphabetical order. This makes your data easier to navigate and your document more professional.

Tips for Sorting a Table Alphabetically in Word

  • Always make sure you have selected the correct table before sorting to avoid any unintended changes to other parts of your document.
  • If your table has headers, ensure the "My list has headers" checkbox is selected in the "Sort" dialog box to avoid sorting the header row into your data.
  • You can sort by multiple columns by adding additional sort levels in the "Sort" dialog box. This is useful if you have entries with the same value in the primary sort column.
  • If you need to sort a table that spans multiple pages, consider breaking it into smaller tables for easier management.
  • Remember that sorting a table is an irreversible action. If you’re unsure about the sort order, consider making a copy of your table before sorting.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if my table doesn’t sort correctly?

Make sure that the column you’re sorting by doesn’t have merged cells and that all the cells in the column contain data.

Can I sort a table by more than one column?

Yes, you can add additional sort levels in the "Sort" dialog box to sort by multiple columns.

How do I undo the sorting if I make a mistake?

You can press Ctrl+Z to undo the sorting action immediately after performing it.

Can I sort a table alphabetically without using the "Sort" feature?

You can manually rearrange rows, but this is not practical for larger tables. The "Sort" feature is the most efficient method.

Is it possible to sort a table in Word on a Mac the same way as on a PC?

Yes, the steps for sorting a table alphabetically in Word are the same for both Mac and PC users.


  1. Select the table.
  2. Go to the "Layout" tab.
  3. Click on "Sort."
  4. Choose your sorting options.
  5. Click "OK."


Sorting a table alphabetically in Word is a straightforward process that can save you time and help you organize your data effectively. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can quickly sort any table by any column in ascending or descending order. Remember to use the tips provided to make the process even smoother and keep in mind the answers to frequently asked questions, just in case you encounter any issues. With this knowledge, you’re now equipped to handle any sorting task in Word with confidence. Keep practicing, and soon you’ll be sorting tables like a pro!

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