How to Autofit in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Autofitting in Excel is a handy feature that allows you to automatically adjust the width of your columns or the height of your rows to fit the content. It ensures that all your data is visible and presented in a neat and organized manner. You can achieve this by using the mouse to double-click on the column or row borders, or by selecting the relevant option from the Excel menu.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Autofit in Excel

Autofitting your Excel columns and rows can make your spreadsheet look more professional and easier to read. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1

Double-click the boundary line between two column headers.

When you hover over the line between two column headers, your cursor will change to a double-sided arrow. At this point, double-click, and the column to the left will automatically adjust to fit the longest piece of content.

Step 2

Use the ‘Format’ menu to select ‘Autofit Column Width’.

If you prefer using the menu, go to the ‘Home’ tab, find the ‘Cells’ group, and click ‘Format’. From there, you can choose ‘Autofit Column Width’, and Excel will adjust the selected column(s) for you.

Step 3

Autofit rows by selecting ‘Autofit Row Height’ from the ‘Format’ menu.

Just like with columns, you can adjust the row height by going to the ‘Format’ menu and selecting ‘Autofit Row Height’. This will adjust the row to fit the tallest piece of content.

After completing these steps, your rows and columns will be perfectly sized to fit your data, making your spreadsheet look clean and well-organized.

Tips for Autofitting in Excel

  • If you want to autofit multiple columns or rows at once, simply select them all before double-clicking or using the ‘Format’ menu.
  • Keep in mind that autofitting will only adjust to the longest or tallest content visible. If you have cells with wrapped text, you may need to adjust the row height manually.
  • Autofitting is not a one-time fix. If you add longer content later, you’ll need to autofit again to accommodate the new data.
  • If you have merged cells, autofit will adjust to the size of the merged cell, which may not always be what you want.
  • Remember that autofitting can make some columns very wide or rows very tall if you have particularly long content, which might not always be desirable for the presentation of your data.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I undo autofitting in Excel?

Yes, you can undo autofitting by manually adjusting the column width or row height back to the desired size.

Does autofitting work with merged cells?

Autofitting does work with merged cells, but it treats the merged cells as one single cell, which might not produce the desired result.

What is the keyboard shortcut for autofitting in Excel?

While there is no direct keyboard shortcut for autofitting, you can use “Alt + H, O, I” for columns and “Alt + H, O, A” for rows to access the autofit options.

Can I autofit all columns or rows in a sheet at once?

Yes, you can autofit all columns or rows by clicking the triangle in the top-left corner of the sheet to select everything, and then autofitting as normal.

Why won’t Excel autofit my column or row?

If Excel won’t autofit, it could be because the cell content is formatted as wrapped text, or there are merged cells that are affecting the autofit function. Check your formatting to ensure it’s configured correctly.


  1. Double-click the boundary line between two column headers.
  2. Use the ‘Format’ menu to select ‘Autofit Column Width’.
  3. Autofit rows by selecting ‘Autofit Row Height’ from the ‘Format’ menu.


Mastering the art of autofitting in Excel can turn a jumbled mess of data into a sleek and legible spreadsheet. It’s one of those skills that might seem small, but it makes a world of difference when you’re trying to analyze data or present it to others. Remember, it’s not just about making your data fit; it’s about making it accessible and easy to understand. Autofitting ensures that your audience can focus on the content without getting distracted by cut-off text or scrolling through oversized cells. So, the next time you’re preparing a spreadsheet, give autofitting a try. It’s a simple trick that can elevate your data game to the next level. And who knows? It might just be the thing that impresses your boss or wins over a client. Happy autofitting!

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