How To Shade Every Other Row In Excel

Hello everyone! Today I want to share a really cool Excel tip with you. You know, sometimes working with large sets of data can be a bit overwhelming, especially when trying to read across rows. One way to make it easier on the eyes is by shading every other row in Excel. This simple formatting trick can make your data much more readable and organized.

Step 1: Start with the Data

First things first, open up Excel and input or import your data. Personally, I find it really important to have a clean and well-organized dataset before applying any formatting. This helps ensure that the shaded rows actually serve a purpose and make the data easier to interpret.

Step 2: Select the Range

Once your data is in place, it’s time to select the range of cells that you want to format. You can do this by clicking and dragging your cursor over the range, or simply clicking the first cell and then using the keyboard to navigate to the last cell in the range while holding down the shift key.

Step 3: Apply Conditional Formatting

Now comes the fun part – applying the conditional formatting. Head over to the “Home” tab, click on “Conditional Formatting” in the “Styles” group, and then select “New Rule”.

This will open up the “New Formatting Rule” dialog box. Here, you’ll want to select “Use a formula to determine which cells to format”.

Now, in the “Format values where this formula is true” field, enter the formula =MOD(ROW(),2)=0. This formula uses the MOD function to determine if the row number is even or odd, and then applies the formatting accordingly.

Step 4: Choose the Formatting Style

After entering the formula, click on the “Format” button to choose the formatting style for the shaded rows. This could be a different background color, a bold font, or any other style that makes the alternating rows stand out to you.

Step 5: Finalize and Enjoy

Once you’ve selected your formatting style, click “OK” to close the “Format Cells” dialog box, and then click “OK” again in the “New Formatting Rule” dialog box. Viola! You should now see every other row shaded in your selected range.

Personal Tips

From my personal experience, I find that using a light shade for the alternating rows works best. It adds a subtle visual cue without overpowering the data. Also, remember to update the formatting if you add or delete rows to ensure the shading stays consistent across the entire dataset.


Shading every other row in Excel is a simple yet effective way to improve the readability of your data. It’s a small touch that can make a big difference, especially when dealing with large spreadsheets. Give it a try and see how much easier it is to scan through your data at a glance!