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: Combining Cell Contents.

Combining Cell Contents

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 28, 2015)


At the heart of Excel is the ability to add formulas to worksheets. You use these formulas to manipulate information stored in different cells. One of the ways you can manipulate information is to combine the contents of your cells. For instance, let's assume you have a list of last names in column A, a list of first names in column B, and a list of titles (Mr., Ms., Dr., etc.) in column C. If you wanted to derive a full name for these people, you could use the following formula:

=C4 & " " & B4 & " " & A4

The result of such a formula is that Excel combines the values (the names and titles) from the specified cells and places spaces between them. The ampersand character (&) is used to indicate that Excel should "add" text together to create a new text value.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2623) 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: Combining Cell Contents.

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. ...


Entering Tabs in a Table

When press the Tab key while entering info into a table, Word dutifully moves to the next table cell. If you don't want ...

Discover More

Working with Minutes

For many Excel users—particularly beginners—working with elapsed time can be bewildering. This tip explains ...

Discover More

Word Indexes and Special Tables (Special Offer)

Word Indexes and Special Tables shows you how you can enhance your documents with these special document elements. ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Determining Business Quarters from Dates

Many businesses organize information according to calendar quarters, especially when it comes to fiscal information. ...

Discover More

Dealing with Circular References

Circular references occur when a formula includes a reference to the cell in which the formula appears. Here's how you ...

Discover More

Determining "Highest Since" or "Lowest Since"

When compiling statistics on a collection of data points, you may want to know whether a particular value is the "highest ...

Discover More

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

View most recent newsletter.


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 less than 8?

2015-03-02 22:51:56


Remember, if you plan to copy-and-paste the results from one or more cells containing ampersand connected characters within Excel, select "Paste Special" and "Values" before pasting the results or you will only be pasting the formula.

However, just plain pasting to MSWord, Notepad, Wordpad or a Text document will produce the expected text.

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

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.