Adjust text to fit within an Excel cell

Microsoft Excel's AutoFit feature is great when you need to resize a cell to display more text than the cell currently allows. But when you can't change the size of a cell to fit the text, this tip shows how you can resize the text to fit within the cell.

When text is too long to display in a label cell, you can use Microsoft Excel's AutoFit feature to enlarge the cell enough to fit the contents. But this can result in too much white space in the rest of the row or column.

Rather than fitting the cell to the label size, Excel also lets you resize the contents to fit within the cell. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the cell with text that's too long to fully display, and press [Ctrl]1.
  2. In the Format Cells dialog box, select the Shrink To Fit check box on the Alignment tab, and click OK.

However, sometimes this method shrinks text to the point of sacrificing legibility. An alternate method is to wrap the label text within the selected cell by selecting the Wrap Text check box on the Alignment tab of the Format Cells dialog box. Keep in mind that this method will increase the height of the cell.

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