To work more efficiently in the Microsoft Excel sheets, it’s possible to add drop-down lists in certain cells. These drop-down lists allow you and your colleagues to select a specific element in a list you created.


Step 1: Create a source table

In your sheet, create your table with the title of your list (“localization” in our example) and add in various elements.

Step 2: Parameter your drop-down list

Once that’s done, you can go back to your table and select the cell in which you want to place your drop-down list.

PS: If it needs to be in multiple cells, select all of them

Once selected, in the navigation panel, choose “Data” then “Data Validation”. A window opens.

In the “Options” tab, in the validation criteria section, in “Allow”, you need to select “List”.

If you wish to have the possibility of an empty cell, you can just check the “Ignore if empty” box.

In any case, you need to leave the “In cell drop-down” activated.

You can then finish by selecting the source values, so they are directly added in the drop-down list.

The drop-down list is now available in the different cells.

Step 3: Additional options

In the other two tabs of this window, you can find two more options. You can add an “input message” so a message appears automatically when you click on the cell.

When the cell is selected, the message appears automatically:

The tab “Error Alert” allows you to show a contextual message if an element that does not belong in the drop-down list is added to the cell. Once you have checked the “Show error alert after invalid data is entered”, you can choose the style of the message and its text.

You now just have to press the “OK” button.

If a value different from your drop-down list’s is added, an error message will appear.


Your drop-down list is now ready.  You now know how to add a drop-down list in an Excel sheet.


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