How To Perform Multi Level Data Sorting In Microsoft Excel 2010

Data sorting is a daily activity which is required to perform to make data easier to read. If you have large data sets & you want to perform multi-level data sorting i.e. sorting by one column & then another, there are two ways you can perform multiple level data sorting:

Method 1 – Sort Dialog box

 

Let us take an example to understand:

We have Sales Report that contains Sales Person, Country & Sales Amount.

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We need to sort the report by Sales Person & Country column to look like the below snapshot:

img2

  • We need to follow the below steps:
  • Select the data
  • Click on Data tab
  • From Sort & Filter group, click on Sort

 
img9

  • The following Sort dialog box will appear

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  • In the Sort Dialogue box, select the following options:
  • Sort by (Column): Sales Person (this is the first level of sorting)
  • Sort On: Values (you can have cell color, font color, cell icon)
  • Order: A to Z
  • If the data contains headers then, “My data has headers” option needs to be checked

 
img4

  • Click on Add Level to add another level for sorting
  • In the second level of Sorting, select the following options:
  • Sort by (Column): Country (this is the second level of sorting)
  • Sort On: Values (you can have cell color, font color, cell icon)
  • Order: A to Z

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  • Click on OK button, and you will get the sorted data

 
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This sorts data by Sales Person & then by Country column. Sorting will work on text as well as numbers. You can have as many sorting levels as you want.

 

Method 2 – Sort Icons

 

This is another way of performing multi-level data sorting which is the faster way. This technique works wherein you have to sort second level first & then move on to first level of sorting.

  • You need to select the column that you want to be sorted last (select Country column first)
  • Click on Data tab

 

From Sort & Filter group, click on Sort A to Z icon.

img7

  • This will sort the Country column with Canada at the top
  • Now select the Sales Person column (this is the column that you want to sort first)
  • Click on Sort A to Z icon.

Now the data is sorted by Sales Person column first & then with the Country column.

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In case you have multiple levels of sorting (say three levels) then start by sorting the last column (third column) followed by second column & then first column.

In this way, you can get the same result. In case you are sorting by values, you can use Method 1.

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