Quick, clean, and to the point

How to name and format worksheet tabs

In this lesson, we'll look at how to name and rename worksheets. We'll also look at how to change the color of worksheet tabs.

Let's take a look.

When you open a new workbook, or add new worksheets to an existing workbook, Excel uses a generic name for each sheet. Sheet1, Sheet2, Sheet3, and so on.

As you build out a workbook to meet your needs you'll probably want to rename these sheets to keep things organized.

The easiest way to rename a worksheet is to double click it's name. This will highlight the text of the name, and you can then type a new name.

Press enter to confirm the change.

You can also right click on a worksheet and choose Rename from the menu.

As before, Excel will highlight the text and you can type a new name.

Once text is highlighted, you can click to move the cursor inside the text and edit as you like. You can also doubleclick to select individual words.

There are a few rules to keep in mind when you rename tabs.

Excel worksheet names need to be at least one character long, and can't be longer than 31 characters.

You can't have two sheets with same name in the same workbook.

Certain characters are not allowed in worksheet names, including square brackets, asterisks, question marks, forward and backward slashes, periods,  apostrophes, and colons. If try to type these characters, into a worksheet name, Excel will simply ignore the input.

In addition to changing a worksheet's name, you can also change the color of a worksheet tab. To change the color, just right click and choose tab color from the menu. You can then choose a color of your choice.

Note that you will not see the color change until you click enter and select another worksheet.

Core Excel

Related shortcuts

Dave Bruns