Once a spreadsheet contains numerous lines of data, it becomes difficult to find what you are looking for.
It then becomes important to properly sort the data to ensure it can be read easily. A sorting scheme from A to Z, highest to lowest or vice versa can help make the data easier to interpret.
This article will focus on how to sort alphabetically in Excel on your computer and in the Google Sheets app on mobile devices.
Sort Alphabetically in Google Sheets
In the example below we have a dataset that contains a list of cities and the corresponding ticket price for each city. Here is how you can sort this dataset alphabetically.
1. Select the header row of the dataset, click on View > Freeze > 1 Row.
You need to freeze the header row, otherwise it will be sorted as well.
2. Now select a cell from the column you want to sort alphabetically.
3. Click on Data from the top menu.
4. Now from the dropdown menu select Sort sheet > Sort Sheet by Column A (A to Z).
The data will now be sorted alphabetically as you can see in the image below.
If you want to sort the data alphabetically from Z to A, then simply select the Sort Sheet by Column A (Z to A) option.
The same method above can also be used to sort by ascending and descending price. In the example above, instead of sorting by column A, you would sort by column B.
You will also notice in the example that while the data is being sorted alphabetically according to column A, the values for Column B are still intact. The price for Chicago before sorting was $544 and it is still $544 after the sort function.
Sort Alphabetically in Google Sheets on Android or iPhone
The steps to sort data alphabetically in Google Sheets on Android and iPhone are a bit different than the desktop version.
1. Open the Sheets app on your Android phone or iPhone and then open the spreadsheet you want to sort.
2. Locate the header row and then tap on the header row’s number to highlight the row.
3. Tap on the header row number once again to see a menu.
4. From the menu tap on the 3-dot icon (or the more arrow on iPhones)
5. Next tap on Freeze Row to freeze the header row.
The header row will now be frozen. This is necessary otherwise the header will also be sorted alphabetically along with your data.
6. Tap on any other cell to deselect the first row.
7. Now locate the column you want to sort by and tap on the column letter (located at the top of the column) to select the column.
8. Tap on the column letter once again to see a menu.
9. Tap on the 3-dot icon (or the more arrow on iPhones)
10. Tap on the Sort A-Z option.
You will notice that the data has now been sorted alphabetically.
If your dataset has multiple columns and you are looking to sort multiple columns alphabetically, then you can follow the tutorial below.