Working with Fonts

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 15, 2014)

Fonts control how individual characters appear in your worksheet. These fonts are given names that are either dictated by tradition or loosely represent the appearance of the font. For instance, Courier is a common font, as is Helvetica and Times Roman. There are literally thousands of fonts on the market today, each being sold by different vendors. (You can even find some fonts on the Internet for free.)

In many respects, fonts are controlled outside of Excel. For instance, if you want to add or delete a font, you must do it within Windows, not within Excel. The application of these fonts within your worksheet, however, is completely under the control of Excel. Excel supports any font that you can load into Windows.

To change a font within Excel, you must first select the cells you want to format. If you are formatting entire cells, it's not important that the cells have anything in them; you can format the cells before they actually contain information. When you later add the information, it will assume the format you last set, including the font. Excel also allows you to change the font used by individual characters within a cell. All you need to do is select the text whose font you wish to change.

Once the cell (or information within a cell) is selected, you can change the font by clicking on the arrow next to the Font tool on the Formatting toolbar. When you do, you will see a pull-down list of fonts from which you can choose one. You can scroll through the available fonts the same way you scroll through many other options within Excel. When you select a font, the change is made immediately.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1941) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Removing Fingernail Ridges

If you are trying to get the look of glamorous or sophisticated natural nails, you may be foiled in your attempts by ...

Discover More

Inserting the Name of the Last Person to Save the Document

Who saved the document the last time? Word keeps track of that information, and you can insert the person?s name into the ...

Discover More

Changing where a Spreadsheet is Stored

Get lots of files into Drive, and sooner or later you'll want to organize them in some way. Sheets includes a great feature ...

Discover More

Excel Smarts for Beginners! Featuring the friendly and trusted For Dummies style, this popular guide shows beginners how to get up and running with Excel while also helping more experienced users get comfortable with the newest features. Check out Excel 2013 For Dummies today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Replacing Cell Formats

Need to replace the formats applied to some cells with a different format? Those using Excel 2003 will find it easy; those ...

Discover More

Understanding Color and Conditional Formatting Codes

When you create custom cell formats, you can include codes that allow you to set the color of a cell and that specify the ...

Discover More

Changing Font Color

There are any number of reasons to format different cells in different colors. Excel allows you to easily change the color ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is six more than 9?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.