Best of Launch Excel in 2011

Last updated on January 4, 2012 By

2011 was the first year for Launch Excel. I started working on the site full time in October 2011. In the full year to Dec 31, there were 5,218 unique page views and there will be many more visitors in 2012!

To welcome in the New Year I will highlight the most popular content from Launch Excel in 2011, as measured by Google Analytics. Plus there is a special bonus article for you waiting at the end of the post!

Here are the Top 10 articles in 2011:

Coming in at a solid 10th place… Have you ever been secretly bored with the standard Excel grid? With its hundreds and thousands of empty cells staring right back at you? Did you know there is a way to change your Excel background and brighten up your day! I’ll show you two ways that you can use right now to change the background in Excel to any image of your choice. Click here to read the article

Play the Excel Hero game! Just for a laugh – your goal is to correctly type keyboard shortcuts for the named Excel feature before your time runs out. As the levels progress the shortcuts get more obscure. This game really tests your knowledge and speed with Excel shortcuts!

Shortcuts give you the power to perform tasks without using the mouse to go to the Excel menu or ribbon, which means you can keep your hands on the keyboard instead of going back and forth from mouse to keyboard. With a good knowledge of Excel shortcuts you will blaze through common tasks and enhance your productivity.

In this post I put together a list of 15 great resources for Excel keyboard shortcuts. If you want to download a free PDF resource with over 100 Excel keyboard shortcuts suitable for Excel 2007 and Excel 2010 click here.

Bonus: if you subscribe to my e-mail newsletter you get 8 themed decision matrix spreadsheets to download for free… you will also get a FREE PDF with over 100 popular keyboard shortcuts for Excel 2007 & Excel 2010. Don’t miss out on your free PDF. Click here to subscribe

When you have a cross tab table you might want to flatten it to make it easier to analyze. Sometimes this is called “Normalizing”. In my 2 min 52 sec video you’ll find out how to use the pivot table wizard to import multiple consolidation ranges. Sound a bit complicated? Don’t worry – if you follow my video it is as easy as ABC. Click here to watch

I bet most Excel users learn about autofilters quite early in their Excel careers. They are a handy feature for adhoc analysis of large data sets.

What’s a fast way to turn the autofilter on and off using the keyboard? CTRL + SHIFT + L. In my 6 min 41 sec video you can see how this shortcut works and also get a demonstration of autofilters in action. Click here to watch

What is the best way for you to learn Excel? I cover four different ways to learn Excel in this article. I also recommend two online tutorial courses aimed at people wanting to learn Excel:

This is the first in a series of articles about Project Management tools in Excel. I plan to continue the series in 2012 with more articles on Timelines and Gantt Charts in Excel.

Click here to read

Watch my video-review of Microsoft Expert Chandoo’s Formula 1 PDF Ebook for learning Excel formulas fast. The video lasts 5 min 33 sec, and I go through what’s covered in Chandoo’s downloadable PDF Ebook.

Click here to watch

Screenshot of Launch Excel Decision Matrix (available for download)

Use an Excel spreadsheet as a tool for making better decisions with a decision matrix. Watch the decision matrix in action in my video (10 min 25 sec). You can download a copy of the Launch Excel Decision Matrix spreadsheet and find links to in-depth resources on how to use a Decision Matrix on this resource page.

Finally here is the number 1 article as measured by the total number of pageviews it received in 2011. Learn how to resize column widths in Excel. There are four parts to this series, each looking at a different aspect of resizing columns.

My article 10. Background images in Excel shows you how to change the Excel background image on screen but doesn’t show you how to create a background watermark that can print out. If you want to add a printable watermark in Excel you should read my first article of 2012:

The Little Known Secrets of Adding Watermarks in Excel 2010

What topics would you like to see covered in 2012?

Head down to the comments section and leave a comment to say what topic or topics you’d like to see covered this coming year (2012). I’m open to all suggestions relating to Excel – formulas, macros, VBA, charting, pivot tables.

Happy New Year, and here’s to an awesome 2012!!

Launch Excel

Related Posts:

Connect on YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter.

Hey, I'm Victor Chan

Are you struggling with complex Excel tasks? Feeling overwhelmed by spreadsheets that are hard to use?

Many people believe mastering Excel is about learning shortcuts, functions, and formulas. But this overlooks the importance of building practical, real-world applications. It's not just about knowing the tools. It's about using them effectively.

That's where I come in. You'll get a unique perspective to Excel training from me. I have over 20 years of experience at Deloitte and two global tech companies. And I know what can make a difference in your career.

Let me help you integrate Excel into your professional life. Starting today. Read one of my articles, watch one of my videos. Then apply the new technique to your work. You'll see the difference immediately!

Recommended Posts

Discover the PROVEN Blueprint for transforming your Excel skills, supercharging your productivity, and standing out in your career! My course helps you to learn Excel VBA and save hours of time even if you have zero prior experience with programming.

Solve tricky Excel problems and take your work to the next level! Get customized solutions for your unique needs. Save time and gain insights with truly expert Excel solutions from only $97 per task.

Get a clear overview of your project progress using the Excel project timeline. Use it to communicate the big picture, track task progress, and stay on top of your project goals. Stay organized with our project timeline!

Our cheat sheets provide quick and easy reference to commonly used Excel VBA concepts and code snippets.

Unlock new levels of productivity and efficiency with our cheat sheets, and write VBA code like a pro in no time.


Are you looking to upskill and stay ahead of the curve? Excel is a powerful tool that keeps growing in demand. We round up the best online courses for learning Excel.

Are you looking to up your spreadsheet game? Excel is an invaluable tool that can help you stay organized and save time. From data analysis to budgets, Excel can do it all!

Today, having Excel skills is more critical than ever. Those who know how to use Excel are more likely to find higher-paying jobs. And get promoted faster.


Step up your Excel game! Join our free email newsletter and get updates on how to become more awesome at Excel.