Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Placing Textbox Text Into a Worksheet.

Placing Textbox Text Into a Worksheet

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 22, 2019)

Excel allows you to place all sorts of graphic objects on your worksheet. One type of graphic object actually contains text—a textbox. If you have quite a few textboxes in a worksheet, you may be wondering if there is a way to extract the text from each textbox and place it in the worksheet itself.

There is no command to do this; you must instead use a macro. The following macro steps through each textbox in a worksheet and makes the desired extraction:

Sub ExtractText()
    Dim shp As Shape
    Dim sLoc As String

    For Each shp In ActiveSheet.Shapes
        With shp
            If Left(.Name, 8) = "Text Box" Then
                sLoc = .TopLeftCell.Address
                Do Until Range(sLoc) = ""
                    sLoc = Range(sLoc).Offset(1, 0).Address
                Loop
                Range(sLoc) =.TextFrame.Characters.Text
                .Delete
            End If
        End With
    Next
End Sub

Since Excel stores all graphic shapes in the Shapes collection, you can step through the collection and make a determination as to which shapes you want to work with. In this case, the first eight characters of the shape's name is checked. Only if the name begins with "Text Box" does the macro consider the shape to be a text box from which text can be extracted.

Rather than check for the "Text Box" wording in the name, the macro could also check to see what type of shape is being considered. If you prefer to do this, then simply replace the test line (If Left...) with the following test line:

            If shp.Type = msoTextBox Then

The sLoc variable is used to store the location of the textbox, which is contained in the .TopLeftCell property. A Do loop is then used to make sure that the cell pointed to by the address is empty. (This prevents any existing contents of the cell from being overwritten.) If it is not empty, then the address is "incremented" to the next cell in the column.

With the address of an empty cell determined, the text of the textbox is stored in the cell. The .Delete method is then used to get rid of the actual text box.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2388) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Placing Textbox Text Into a Worksheet.

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

Changing Paragraph Borders

Word allows you to easily add borders to a paragraph of text. If you want, you can even change each side of the border to ...

Discover More

Moving Breaks Quickly

Breaks in a document can be easily moved from one place to another using familiar editing techniques. The trick is to ...

Discover More

Counting with Formulas

When you need to count a number of cells based upon a single criteria, the standard function to use is COUNTIF. This tip ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Using the Camera in VBA

The camera tool allows you to capture dynamic "pictures" of portions of a worksheet. If you want to use the camera tool ...

Discover More

Pulling AutoShape Text from a Worksheet Cell

AutoShapes can easily contain text—just click on the shape and start typing away. You may want the text in the ...

Discover More

Quickly Duplicating Drawing Objects

Excel provides a couple of different ways that you can quickly duplicate drawing objects in a worksheet. Committing these ...

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 four more than 2?

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.