Combine Data From Two Cells Into One

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Q. I need to combine the data from two cells and put them into a third cell. I’ve heard that it can be done, but I don’t know how. Can you help?

A. What you want to do, in technical terms, is concatenate the content of two cells into a third—a technique often used in consolidating data. The basic formula, where, for example, 56 is in cell B1 and 78 is in C1 and you want them combined as one number in D1, is

=concatenate(B1,C1)

The shorthand formula is

=B1&C1

If you want a space between the two numbers, use this formula—placing as many spaces as you wish between the quote marks:

=concatenate(B1,” “,C1)

And the shorthand version is

=B1&” “&C1

If you have a list of names, with first names in one column and last names in another column, and you want the two names of each person joined in one column with a space between them, use this formula:

=concatenate(B1,” “,C1)

But if you want the last name first, separated by a comma, use this formula:

=concatenate(B1”, “C1)

Or this shorthand formula:

=B1&”, “&C1

For more on this subject, see “ Make Excel a Little Smarter.

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