Excel Tutorial: How Do I Make An Excel Spreadsheet A Template


Are you tired of creating the same Excel spreadsheet from scratch every time you need it? If so, you'll be happy to know that you can turn your Excel spreadsheet into a template that you can use again and again. In this tutorial, we'll show you how to do just that, and we'll also discuss the importance of using Excel templates for both efficiency and consistency in your work.

Key Takeaways

  • Excel templates can save time and effort in creating new spreadsheets by providing a pre-formatted structure.
  • Common Excel templates include budgets, calendars, and more, and can be customized to fit specific needs.
  • Sharing and collaborating on templates with colleagues can improve efficiency and standardization in spreadsheet creation.
  • Best practices for Excel templates include keeping them organized, using naming conventions, and regularly updating them based on feedback.
  • Utilizing Excel templates can lead to improved productivity and consistency in your work.

Understanding Excel Templates

An Excel template is a pre-designed spreadsheet that serves as a starting point for creating new documents. It includes preset formatting, formulas, and layout, which can be customized to suit specific needs.

A. Definition of an Excel template

An Excel template is a file that acts as a blueprint for creating new workbooks. It contains placeholders for data and formulas, making it easier to start a new project without having to build everything from scratch.

B. How templates can save time and effort in creating new spreadsheets

Using Excel templates can save time and effort by eliminating the need to recreate the same formatting and formulas for similar spreadsheets. This can be especially useful for repetitive tasks or projects with a consistent structure.

C. Examples of common Excel templates (budgets, calendars, etc.)

Common Excel templates include budgets, calendars, invoices, and project plans. These templates often come with pre-set formulas and formatting that can be easily customized for specific needs.

Creating a New Template

When it comes to creating a new template in Excel, the process is relatively straightforward. By following a few simple steps, you can customize a blank spreadsheet to fit your specific needs and then save it as a template file for future use.

Opening a blank spreadsheet in Excel

  • Open Excel on your computer and select "Blank workbook" to start with a new, empty spreadsheet.

Customizing the layout, formatting, and formulas to fit your needs

  • Layout: Adjust the column widths, row heights, and cell alignment to create the desired layout for your template.
  • Formatting: Apply fonts, colors, and borders to make the spreadsheet visually appealing and easy to read.
  • Formulas: Add any necessary formulas or calculations to automate data entry and calculations within the template.

Saving the customized spreadsheet as a template file

  • To save the customized spreadsheet as a template, go to "File" and select "Save As."
  • Choose the location where you want to save the template and then select "Excel Template (*.xltx)" from the file format options.
  • Give the template a descriptive file name and click "Save" to finalize the process.

By following these steps, you can easily create and save a customized Excel spreadsheet as a template for future use. This allows you to streamline repetitive tasks and ensure consistency in your data management and analysis.

Using an Existing Template

When you need to create a new spreadsheet in Excel, using a pre-made template can save you time and effort. Here's how you can access the template library in Excel, select a pre-made template to use, and make edits and customizations to fit your specific requirements.

A. Accessing the template library in Excel

To access the template library in Excel, open the application and click on the "File" tab at the top left corner of the screen. Then, click on "New" to open the template library. You can also access the template library by searching for "template" in the search bar at the top of the screen.

B. Selecting a pre-made template to use

Once you have accessed the template library, you can browse through the available templates to find one that suits your needs. Excel offers a wide range of pre-made templates for various purposes, such as budgeting, project management, and data analysis. Simply click on a template to preview it, and then click on the "Create" button to use it as a starting point for your spreadsheet.

C. Making edits and customizations to fit your specific requirements

After selecting a pre-made template, you can make edits and customizations to fit your specific requirements. You can add or remove rows and columns, change the formatting and styling, and input your own data. Excel also allows you to add formulas and functions to automate calculations and analysis. You can tailor the pre-made template to meet your specific needs and preferences.

Sharing and Collaborating with Templates

When you create an excel spreadsheet template that you want to share with your colleagues or team members, there are several ways to easily distribute and collaborate on the template.

A. Emailing templates to colleagues or team members

If you want to quickly share your excel template with a few specific individuals, emailing the template is a straightforward method. Simply attach the template file to an email and send it to the recipients. Keep in mind that this method is best for small-scale sharing and may not be efficient for larger teams or frequent updates to the template.

B. Uploading templates to a shared drive or cloud storage for easy access

To ensure that your excel template is easily accessible to all team members and can be updated in real-time, consider uploading it to a shared drive or cloud storage. Platforms like Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, or Dropbox allow you to store and share files with specific individuals or entire teams. This method also ensures that everyone is working from the most up-to-date version of the template.

C. How to collaborate on a template with others in real-time

Collaborating on an excel template in real-time can significantly enhance productivity and streamline team workflows. Many cloud-based spreadsheet applications, such as Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel Online, enable multiple users to work on the same document simultaneously. This feature allows team members to input data, make edits, and view changes in real-time, fostering seamless collaboration.

Best Practices for Excel Templates

Creating an excel spreadsheet template can greatly improve efficiency and consistency in your work. Following best practices for organizing, naming, and updating templates is essential for maximizing their usefulness.

A. Keeping templates organized in a designated folder
  • Designate a specific folder or directory for storing all excel templates.
  • Consider creating subfolders within the designated folder to further organize templates by category or department.
  • Regularly review and update the folder structure to ensure it remains intuitive and accessible.

B. Naming conventions for easy search and retrieval
  • Develop a clear and consistent naming convention for excel templates.
  • Include key information in the file name, such as the purpose of the template, the date of creation, and any relevant department or project identifiers.
  • Avoid using generic or ambiguous names that could lead to confusion or difficulty in identifying the correct template.

C. Regularly updating and improving existing templates based on feedback and changes in requirements
  • Solicit feedback from users of the template to identify areas for improvement or modification.
  • Consider changes in requirements, regulations, or best practices that may necessitate updates to existing templates.
  • Keep track of version history and maintain clear documentation of any changes made to the template.


Using Excel templates can significantly improve your productivity and standardize your spreadsheet creation process. By recapping the benefits of utilizing templates, such as saving time and ensuring consistency, it’s clear that incorporating templates into your workflow is a smart decision. Don’t wait any longer – start utilizing Excel templates today and experience the positive impact on your work.

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