Excel Number Formatting Special: Phone Numbers

Excel gives you the power to format your numbers in a ton of different ways. Today’s post is focusing on one specific, special format: phone numbers. We here at Learn Excel Now are continuously surprised by the number of people who say they didn’t know this was an Excel Feature. So, to help make sure everyone using Excel knows how to create special number formatting, we created the following quick tip.

Let’s say you exported a customer list from your database in an Excel file. There is no formatting in the new file and looks a bit like this:

Excel Number Formatting Image 2

So, the first thing you do is automatically expand the columns and possibly add a bit of color to the spreadsheet so it looks like this:

Excel Number Formatting Image 1

Now, in order to change the numbers to phone numbers, you will need to:

  • Highlight the cells containing the data you want to format
  • Click on the dropdown button on the Number tab of the Home Ribbon

Number Formatting

  • On the Format Cells dialogue box that opens, click Special and then Phone Number

Excel Number Formatting Image 3

Once you click Okay, the cells automatically format as phone numbers:

Excel Number Formatting Special - Phone Numbers

You will see there are other options on the Special formatting:

  • Zip Code
  • Zip Code + 4
  • Phone Number
  • Social Security

Any of these options will allow you to format the numbers in an easy to read way.

We hope you enjoyed this week’s quick tip on formatting Excel for numbers.

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Kevin – Learn Excel Now