How to insert a Python cell into your Excel worksheet (three ways)

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The integration of Python into Excel marks one of the most thrilling advancements for the application in recent times. This feature offers Excel users a multitude of straightforward and rapid benefits.

However, as with any Excel feature, the journey to mastering workbooks begins with a single cell. Here are three methods to help you insert your inaugural Python code into Excel.

Accessing Python in Excel

To use Python in Excel, look for the Python (Preview) group under the Formulas tab on your home ribbon. If it’s not visible, you’ll need to enroll in the Microsoft 365 Insider Program and select the Beta Channel Insider level.

After ensuring access, keep the Formulas tab open, as you will use it for the initial method of inserting a Python cell in Excel.

Through the menu

To insert a Python cell using the Python tab, click on the Insert Python button located within the Python group on the Formulas tab. This action will cause your selected cell to display a green PY prefix, indicating that it’s ready for Python code.

Begin by typing your Python code directly into this cell. Once you’re ready, press Ctrl + Enter to run the code and observe the output. For example, to begin with a simple exercise, assign the classic Hello, World! string to the variable greeting as follows:

Insert Python through formula bar

Through the formula

If you prefer to bypass the menu navigation and start with a formula, you can do so using the =PY() function. Enter this formula into any cell you choose.

When you type the opening parenthesis, the Python editor should appear, allowing you to enter and execute Python code in the same manner as before.

Insert Python via PY functions

Through keyboard shortcuts

And indeed, Excel includes a keyboard shortcut to streamline this workflow.

To insert a Python cell, simply press Ctrl + Alt + Shift + P. This command quickly prepares your chosen cell for Python code input:

Here are a few other handy keyboard shortcuts for Python in Excel:

Inserting a cell is just the beginning

Printing Hello world is merely the beginning; the next step is to explore the capabilities that make Python both user-friendly and potent.

As an Excel user eager to delve into more advanced analytics, consider exploring my book Advancing into Analytics: From Excel to Python and R:

It’s a resource designed to expand your data analysis toolkit.

For further insights and a range of topics related to Python, check out these blog posts.

Do you have any questions about leveraging Python within Excel? Ask away in the comments section.

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