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.

Storing Sorting Criteria

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 24, 2014)

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.

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

Entering Numbers in Excel

Enter information into a cell, and Excel needs to figure out what type of information it is. Here's how Excel interprets ...

Discover More

Protecting Headers and Footers

If you don't want the information in a header or footer to be changed by users of your document, there are a couple of things ...

Discover More

Changing Months in a Workbook

When you copy a worksheet and then need to make changes to information in that worksheet (such as changing month names), the ...

Discover More

Program Successfully in Excel! John Walkenbach's name is synonymous with excellence in deciphering complex technical topics. With this comprehensive guide, "Mr. Spreadsheet" shows how to maximize your Excel experience using professional spreadsheet application development tips from his own personal bookshelf. Check out Excel 2013 Power Programming with VBA today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Sorting by Five Columns

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 can ...

Discover More

Determining Sorting Criteria

If you need to know how a range of data is sorted, the task is not as easy as you might at first think. This tip examines why ...

Discover More

Sorting by Colors

Need to sort your data based on the color of the cell? Excel doesn't include this capability, but you can still do the ...

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 0 + 6?

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.