Excel: How to Parse Data (Split Column Into Two)

Excel: How to Parse Data (Split Column Into Two)

Excel 2016, 2013, and 2010 allow you to parse cells so that you can split data that is contained in one column (e.g., Column A: Last Name, First Name) between two columns (Column A: Last Name. Column B: First Name) without entering the data into each individual cell manually. After opening Excel and the data you would like to split, please follow the procedure below.

  1. Select the column that contains the combined data (e.g., Last Name, First Name) by clicking the letter directly above the column.
  2. Click the “Data” tab in the ribbon, then look in the "Data Tools" group and click “Text to Columns.” The “Convert Text to Columns Wizard" will appear. 
  3. Choose “Delimited” > Click [Next].
  4. A delimiter is the symbol or space which separates the data you wish to split. For example, if your column reads “Smith, John” you would select “Comma” as your delimiter. Select the delimiter within your data. 
  5. Check the box next to “Treat consecutive delimiters as one.”
  6. Click [Next].
  7. Under “Column data format,” choose “General.”
  8. Click the spreadsheet icon next to the "Destination" text box.
  9. Select the column that contains the data you would like to split by clicking the letter directly above the column. Or, manually click and drag to select the data you would like to split. 
  10. Click the spreadsheet icon once more to return to the wizard.
  11. Click [Finish].


Keywords:  split columns, parse data, split cell, separate information

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