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Excel Guide

How to Check for Duplicates in Excel: Step-by-Step Guide

If you have a large dataset in Excel and want to check for and remove duplicates, you can use the built-in functionality for this purpose.

Instructions

Step One: Select the Data

  1. Open your Excel spreadsheet containing the data.
  2. Select the range of cells that you want to check for duplicates. You can do this by clicking and dragging your mouse or by holding down the Shift key while using the arrow keys.

Step Two: Find the Duplicates

  1. Go to the "Data" tab in the Excel ribbon.
  2. Click on the "Remove Duplicates" button. This will open the Remove Duplicates dialog box.
  3. In the dialog box, you'll see a list of all the columns in your selected range. Make sure to select the columns you want to check for duplicates. Excel will identify duplicates based on the selected columns.
  4. Click the "OK" button.

Excel will scan the selected columns for duplicates and remove them. A dialog box will appear, indicating how many duplicates were found and removed.

Step Three: Save the Data

  1. After removing duplicates, click on the "File" menu.
  2. Choose "Save" or "Save As" to save your cleaned-up data.

Tips

  • Column Selection: Be cautious about selecting the right columns. If you only want to check for duplicates in specific columns, ensure only those columns are selected in the Remove Duplicates dialog box.
  • Backup Data: Before removing duplicates, consider making a backup of your data or saving it with a different file name. This way, you can easily revert to the original data if needed.
  • Case Sensitivity: Excel's default duplicate check is case-sensitive. If you want to perform a case-insensitive check, you might need to use a helper column with a formula to convert text to a consistent case before removing duplicates.