Name Box In Excel

What Is Name Box In Excel?

The Name Box in Excel displays the active cell’s address or the defined name of a cell range in a spreadsheet. It is the box to the left of the Formula Bar. While users can utilize the Name Box to create a named range, it helps them quickly navigate to any cell in the active worksheet or cell range in the workbook.

For example, the below table contains a name list.

Name Box in Excel Intro

As the selected cell is A1, it gets displayed in the Name Box as highlighted in the image.

Likewise, we can select the cell range A2:A6 and type a cell range name, say Name_List, in the Name Box, and press Enter to create a named range.

Name Box in Excel Intro Example

Please note: We cannot use spaces, punctuations, or special characters when naming a cell range.

When we choose the cell range A2:A6, the Name Box will display its defined name Name_List. On the other hand, we can click the drop-down button (highlighted in the above image) and select the defined name, Name_List, to choose the corresponding cell range.

Key Takeaways
  • The Name Box in Excel shows the active cell address or a named range.
  • We can view the Name Box in the space between the ribbon and the workspace on the left of the Formula Bar.
  • We can use the Name Box to reach a specific cell, select a cell range, multiple ranges, or an entire row or column.
  • Users can edit the Name Box by editing a defined name or changing the cell range of a named range. And we can delete a defined name in the Name Box from the Name Manager window.

Where To Find Name Box In Excel?

We will find the Name Box in Excel on the left of the Formula Bar, above the work area.

Name Box

The Name Box in Excel displays the active cell’s address using the column letter and row number. It also has a drop-down button to choose the required address from the list of defined names.

Please Note: If your worksheet does not display the Name Box, check the Formula Bar option in the View tab to unhide the Name Box feature.

Name Box in Excel Enable

How To Use Name Box In Excel?

Though the primary function of Name Box in Excel is to show cell addresses, it has some features which we will find practical and useful for our Excel-related tasks.

Quick & Fast To Go To The Specific Cell

Consider the below table showing sales data.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 1

Currently, cell B2 is selected and we can also see it in the Name Box in Excel.

Imagine we have to check the total sales of Branch Office 2. So, we will have to go to cell C8, which we can do using the Name Box feature.

Step 1: First, click on the Name Box.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 1.1

Step 2: Then, type the target cell address. In this case, it is cell C8.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 1.2

Once we press Enter, the target cell C8 will become the new active cell.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 1.3

Since, we can avoid scrolling up and down, or right and left to go to different cells in the worksheet, this feature is very helpful while working with massive data sets.

Instead, we can enter the targeted cell address in the Name Box which will help us quickly reach the specific cell at the other end of the sheet.

Select More Than One Cell At A Time

This feature will help us look beyond the Name Box in Excel of exhibiting cell addresses.

Suppose we create a table containing squares and cubes of a set of numbers. But a few cells in the table are blank.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 2

Now, if we apply the excel keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + Down Arrow from cell B1 to select cells B1:B11, the selection will stop at cell B9, as B10 is empty.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 2.1

Likewise, if we apply the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + Right Arrow from cell A7 to select cells A7:C7, the selection will stop at cell B7, as C7 is blank.

But the Name Box in Excel can help us choose the required cell range, even if it contains blank cells. We can directly type the specific cell range in the Name Box and press Enter to complete the selection.

Step 1: To begin with, click the Name Box in Excel and enter the cell range we require to select.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 2.2

In this example, let us choose the cell range B2:B11.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 2.3

Step 2: Next, press Enter to get the below output.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 2.4

Likewise, we can select more than one cell at a time.

Select Range Of Cells From Active Cell

Suppose we want to select a cell range from the current cell. We would typically type the required cell range in the Name Box and press Enter.

However, the Name Box offers a quicker way to complete this action.

Consider that the active cell is B3, and we must select the cell range B3:G8 in the below sheet.

How to Use - 3

Step 1: First, click on the Name Box.

How to Use - 3.1

Step 2: Next, type the address of the last cell in the cell range we need to select.

In this case, it is cell G8.

How to Use - 3.2

Step 3: Then, press Shift + Enter to view the selected cell range.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 3.3

Likewise, we can select range of cells from active cell.

Select Only Two Cells

Suppose our data set is massive, and we require to select two cells, one on each corner of the table. Then, choosing the first cell and scrolling to the second cell while pressing the Ctrl key can be tedious.

Instead, we can use the Name Box in Excel to select any two cells in a worksheet.

Consider that we have data in columns A and E, and we require to select the cells A4 and E7.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 4

Step 1: First, ensure the active cell is A4. If we would like to confirm, we can check the Name Box.

How to Use - 4.1

Step 2: Next, click the Name Box in Excel to type the second cell address.

How to Use - 4.2

Step 3: Then, press Ctrl + Enter to select the two cells.

How to Use - 4.3

Select Multiple Range Of Cells

Suppose we have two tables, as depicted in the below image.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 5

And if we need to select the multiple ranges in just a click, we might select the first cell range, press Ctrl and choose the subsequent ranges.

But the Name Box in Excel makes such selections easier.

To select the two tables, we must choose the cell ranges A1:C7 and E1:G6. Then, we can use the Name Box to complete the action quickly.

Step 1: Click on the Name Box.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 5.1

Step 2: Enter the required cell ranges separated by commas.

How to Use - 5.2

Step 3: Press Enter to view the multiple ranges selected in the worksheet.

How to Use - 5.3

Likewise, we can enter as many cell ranges in the Name Box (each separated by a comma) and then press Enter to complete the selection.

Select Entire Column

Sometimes, we might have to choose an entire column. We can do it by using the Name Box in Excel.

Suppose we have a grocery list in column A, and we have to select the whole column.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 6

The steps are:

Step 1: Click on the Name Box.

How to Use - 6.1

Step 2: Type the entire column range, A:A.

How to Use - 6.2

Step 3: Press Enter to view the entire selected column.

How to Use - 6.3

Select Entire Row

The Name Box in Excel allows us to select an entire row, similar to how we chose an entire column.

Suppose below is our source data, and we need to select row 4 for our task.

How to Use - 7

Step 1: Click on the Name Box.

How to Use - 7.1

Step 2: Type the row range we need to select. In this example, it is 4:4.

Name Box in Excel How to Use - 7.2

Step 3: Press Enter to view the entire selected row.

How to Use - 7.3

Edit Name Box In Excel

We can edit or change Name Box in Excel in the following ways.

Let us use the below example table.

Example 1

Suppose the cell range A2:A11 has the name EMP_List.

Name Box in Excel Example 1.0

We can change the defined name in the Name Box using the Name Manager, and the steps are:

Step 1: Click on Formulas > Name Manager.

Basic Example 3.1

Step 2: The Name Manager window opens. Here, we need to select the defined name we need to modify and click Edit.

Example 1.1

The Edit Name window will open.

Example 1.2

Step 3: Edit the Name field in the Edit Name window according to our requirement and click OK to close the window.

Example 1.3

We will see the updated defined name in the Name Manager window.

Example 1.4

Once we click on the Close button in the Name Manager window, the edited Name Box will be as depicted below:

 Example 1.5

Change Cell Range In The Name Box

Assume we add an entry to the example table and want to include the new employee name in the existing named range, EMP_Name.

Example 2

When we choose the required named range from the Name Box in Excel drop-down list, we will see the existing cell range without the new employee name.

Example 2.0
Example 2.1

We can change Name Box in Excel using Name Manager to update the cell range for the named range, EMP_Name.

Step 1: Click on Formulas > Name Manager.

Basic Example 3.1

Step 2: The Name Manager window opens up. Here, we have to select the named range whose cell range we need to update.

 Example 2.2

Step 3: In the Refers to field, update the cell range to include the new employee name in the named range, and then click the tick mark button.

Example 2.3

The field gets updated with the new cell range. Click Close to close the window.

We can also choose the required named range in the Name Manager window and click Edit. Then in the Edit Name window, we can update the cell range in the Refers to field and click OK. The Name Manager window will have the updated range, as depicted in the above image.

Example 2.4

Now, if we choose the specific named range from the Name Box, we will observe the new employee’s name included in the named range.

Example 2.5
Example 2.6

Delete Name Box In Excel

Though the function of Name Box in Excel is to show the specific cell address or named ranged, we can also use the Excel feature to delete a named range.

Suppose below is a named range, STU_Grade, and we need to delete the name.

Example 3

The steps are:

Step 1: Click on Formulas > Name Manager.

Basic Example 3.1

Step 2: The Name Manager window opens up. Choose the named range we want to delete and click Delete.

example 3.1

We will get the below warning message.

Example 3.2

Once we click OK, the defined name gets deleted in the Name Manager.

Example 3.3

Click Close to exit the window. And if we check our worksheet, we will not find the deleted defined name in the Name Box drop-down list.

Example 3.4

Likewise, we can select all the named ranges we need to delete in the Name Manager window and click Delete to remove them in just a click.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to unhide Name Box in Excel?

We can unhide Name Box in Excel by checking the Formula Bar box in the View tab.

Suppose our worksheet does not show the Name Box, as depicted below:

FAQ 1

Once we click on the View tab and check the Formula Bar box, we will see the Name Box and the Formula Bar.

What happens when you select a defined name in the Name Box?

When we select a defined name in the Name Box, it highlights the corresponding range of cells in the worksheet.

We can either enter the defined name in the Name Box or use the Name Box drop-down list to pick the required defined name to select the specific named range.

How do you manage Name Box in Excel?

Using the Name Manager option in the Formulas tab, we can manage Name Box in Excel.

Basic Example 3.1

The Name Manager window shows the defined names in our workbook, their cell ranges, and other associated details. And it contains the New, Edit, Delete, and Filter options to manage the Name Box.

Example 3.3

We can click New to create a new named range or choose the Edit option to change an existing defined name. And we can select a defined name and click Delete to remove it from the Name Box.

The Filter button gives us different options to view the defined names.

Download Template

This article must be helpful to understand the Name Box in Excel, with its formula and examples. You can download the template here to use it instantly.

This has been a guide to Name Box in Excel. Here we discuss how to use, edit and delete name box with examples and downloadable excel template. You can learn more from the following articles –

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