Using a custom sort order

Excel 2016 2013 2010 2003
In some cases you may want to sort your data in non-standart ways. For example, if your data consists of month names, you usually want it to appear in month order rather than alphabetically.

If you want to sort your data, on the Home tab, in the Editing group, click the Sort & Filter list and choose Custom Sort...:

Editing group in Excel 2007

Or, right-click any cell in the table and choose Sort -> Custom Sort... from the shortcut menu:

Custom Sort in Excel 2007

In the Order column, select the Custom List...:

Sort in Excel 2007

Excel, by default, has four "custom lists", and you can define your own. Excel's custom lists are as follows:

Custom Lists in Excel 2007
  • Abbreviated days: Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat
  • Days: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
  • Abbreviated months: Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec
  • Months: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Note that the abbreviated days and months do not have periods after them. If you use periods for these abbreviations, they are not recognized (and are not sorted correctly).

You may want to create a custom list. For example, your company may have several stores, and you want the stores to be listed in a particular order (not alphabetically).

To create a custom list, select the NEW LIST option and make your entries (in order) in the List Entries box.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to ask OfficeToolTips team.