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: Storing Sorting Criteria.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 7, 2019)
Stephanie often has to perform sorts of her data using the same criteria over and over again. For instance, she often needs to perform a sort that uses the same three columns. She wonders if there is a way to "store" a set of sorting criteria so she doesn't need to enter them over and over again.
There are a couple of ways that you can approach this issue. The first is to create custom views (described in other issues of ExcelTips) that include your data sorted in a desired manner. You can always store and recall the view to see it sorted as you want.
Perhaps the most flexible approach, however, is to perform your sorting in a macro instead of by using the Sort dialog box. You can easily use the macro recorder to set up and execute your sort; later running the macro will sort the same area over again, using the same criteria.
A more general macro would be one like what is shown below. It sorts columns A, B, and C in descending order. All you need to do is select the data you want sorted before running the macro. (You should, of course, make sure that the range you select includes columns A, B, and C.)
Sub SortMyData() Selection.Sort _ Key1:=Range("A1"), Order1:=xlAscending, _ Key2:=Range("B1"), Order2:=xlAscending, _ Key3:=Range("C1"), Order3:=xlAscending, _ Header:=xlGuess, OrderCustom:=1, _ MatchCase:=False, Orientation:=xlTopToBottom, _ DataOption1:=xlSortNormal, _ DataOption2:=xlSortNormal, _ DataOption3:=xlSortNormal End Sub
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (8344) 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: Storing Sorting Criteria.
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!
Excel allows you to sort but up to three columns, but you may want to sort by more than that. This tip provides ways you ...Discover More
Excel is very flexible in how it can sort your data. You can even create your own custom sort order that is helpful when ...Discover More
Need to sort all the data in a table? Here's the fastest and easiest way to do it.Discover More
FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."
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.