10 Keyboard Shortcuts for Moving to the Next Tab in Excel


When it comes to navigating through large Excel spreadsheets with multiple tabs, every second counts. That's where keyboard shortcuts come in. These handy shortcuts can significantly increase productivity and efficiency while working on spreadsheets, allowing you to seamlessly move between tabs without having to reach for your mouse. In this blog post, we will explore 10 keyboard shortcuts that will help you quickly and effortlessly move to the next tab in Excel, saving you time and streamlining your workflow.

Key Takeaways

  • Keyboard shortcuts in Excel can significantly increase productivity and efficiency while navigating through large spreadsheets with multiple tabs.
  • Ctrl + PgDn allows users to quickly move to the next worksheet tab, saving time compared to manual scrolling.
  • Ctrl + Tab helps switch between open tabs within the same Excel window, similar to tab switching in web browsers.
  • Ctrl + F6 allows users to cycle through all open workbooks, useful for working with multiple Excel files simultaneously.
  • Ctrl + Shift + PgDn enables users to move to the next group of worksheets, particularly handy when dealing with grouped tabs.
  • Ctrl + Shift + Tab lets users move backward between open tabs, convenient for revisiting recently visited tabs.
  • Familiarizing yourself with these shortcuts will optimize your Excel experience and contribute to a smoother workflow and increased productivity.

Shortcut 1: Ctrl + PgDn

The first keyboard shortcut that Excel users should be aware of is Ctrl + PgDn. This shortcut allows users to quickly move to the next worksheet tab in Excel, saving them time and effort.

Explain that this shortcut allows users to move to the next worksheet tab in Excel.

By pressing Ctrl + PgDn, users can easily navigate to the next tab within their Excel workbook. This shortcut works seamlessly, regardless of the number of worksheets in the file.

Highlight the convenience of using this shortcut instead of manually scrolling through multiple tabs.

Manually scrolling through multiple tabs can be tedious and time-consuming, especially when working with a large number of worksheets. Ctrl + PgDn offers a more efficient way to move between tabs, allowing users to quickly access the desired worksheet without the need for excessive scrolling.

Mention that this shortcut is particularly useful when working with a large number of worksheets in a single Excel file.

When working with a complex Excel file that contains numerous worksheets, Ctrl + PgDn becomes an invaluable tool. Instead of spending valuable time locating and clicking on each tab individually, users can simply press Ctrl + PgDn to effortlessly move through the various worksheets.

Shortcut 2: Ctrl + Tab

The second shortcut on our list is Ctrl + Tab, which is a handy tool for switching between open tabs within the same Excel window. This shortcut allows users to quickly navigate through different tabs, saving them valuable time and effort.

1. Switching between open tabs

With the Ctrl + Tab shortcut, users can easily move between various tabs open in Excel without the need to click on each tab individually. They can simply press Ctrl + Tab and release it to switch to the next tab.

2. Time-saving benefits

The Ctrl + Tab shortcut is particularly useful for users who frequently work with multiple tabs in Excel. Instead of manually clicking on each tab, this shortcut allows them to swiftly move from one tab to another, enhancing their efficiency and productivity.

The time saved by using Ctrl + Tab adds up, especially when dealing with complex spreadsheets or when needing to reference information from multiple tabs simultaneously. By utilizing this shortcut, users can navigate through their Excel files more quickly, allowing them to focus on other important tasks.

3. Similarity to web browser shortcuts

Another advantage of the Ctrl + Tab shortcut in Excel is its similarity to the keyboard shortcut used for switching between tabs in web browsers. This familiarity makes it easier for users to adapt to navigating between different tabs within Excel, especially if they are already familiar with web browsing shortcuts.

By leveraging their existing knowledge of web browser shortcuts, users can seamlessly transition between Excel and their preferred internet browser, enhancing their overall workflow.

Shortcut 3: Ctrl + F6

One of the lesser-known keyboard shortcuts in Excel, but one that can greatly enhance navigation efficiency, is Ctrl + F6. This shortcut allows users to cycle through all open workbooks in Excel, making it particularly handy when working with multiple Excel files simultaneously.

1. Enhanced Navigation Efficiency

By using Ctrl + F6, users can quickly switch between open workbooks without having to reach for their mouse or navigate through the Excel menu options. This shortcut provides a seamless way to move between different files, ensuring a smooth workflow and saving valuable time.

2. Working with Multiple Excel Files

When working with multiple Excel files simultaneously, it can be overwhelming to keep track of each open workbook. However, with Ctrl + F6, users can effortlessly cycle through these files and easily find the desired tab or worksheet they need to work on. This shortcut streamlines the process of navigating between different workbooks, allowing for better organization and improved productivity.

3. Discovering a Lesser-Known Option

While Ctrl + F6 may not be as widely known as some of the more commonly used shortcuts in Excel, it is definitely worth exploring for its potential to enhance navigation efficiency. By incorporating this shortcut into your Excel workflow, you can take advantage of a hidden gem that many Excel users may not be aware of.

In conclusion, the Ctrl + F6 shortcut in Excel offers a convenient way to cycle through all open workbooks, providing enhanced navigation efficiency, particularly when working with multiple files simultaneously. By utilizing this lesser-known option, users can streamline their workflow and improve productivity in Excel.

Shortcut 4: Ctrl + Shift + PgDn

One of the essential keyboard shortcuts in Excel is Ctrl + Shift + PgDn. This shortcut allows users to swiftly move to the next group of worksheets in Excel, offering a convenient way to navigate through a large workbook with multiple tabs.

Efficient Navigation Through Grouped Worksheets

Ctrl + Shift + PgDn proves particularly useful when dealing with workbook tabs that are grouped together. In Excel, users have the option to group multiple worksheets, making it easier to manage and manipulate data across related sheets. With this shortcut, users can effortlessly move between these grouped tabs, enhancing productivity and efficiency.

Imagine you are working on a financial model where you have multiple worksheets grouped by different years or regions. Instead of tediously clicking on individual tabs to switch between them, you can simply press Ctrl + Shift + PgDn to quickly move through these related worksheets. This saves significant time and effort, allowing you to focus on analyzing and manipulating your data.

An Efficient Way to Navigate Through Related Worksheets

This keyboard shortcut provides an efficient way to navigate through related worksheets, especially when performing tasks that require comparing or referencing data across multiple sheets. It eliminates the need for repetitive mouse movements and accelerates your workflow.

For example, suppose you have a workbook with various sheets representing different departments in your organization. By grouping these department sheets together, you can easily jump from one department's worksheet to another using Ctrl + Shift + PgDn. This allows you to quickly analyze and compare data between departments, improving your decision-making process.

  • Ctrl + Shift + PgDn enables swift navigation between grouped worksheets.
  • It saves time and effort when dealing with large workbooks.
  • Users can efficiently compare and reference data across multiple worksheets.
  • This shortcut enhances productivity and streamlines the workflow.

Shortcut 5: Ctrl + Shift + Tab

The fifth keyboard shortcut on our list is Ctrl + Shift + Tab. This powerful shortcut enables users to effortlessly move backward between open tabs within the same Excel window. Whether you're working on a complex spreadsheet or navigating through multiple worksheets, this shortcut can save you valuable time and improve your overall efficiency.

Convenience of revisiting recently visited tabs

One of the key advantages of using Ctrl + Shift + Tab is the ability to quickly revisit tabs that you have recently visited. This can be particularly useful if you need to switch back and forth between specific tabs or want to refer to information from a previous tab without losing your current place.

By pressing Ctrl + Shift + Tab, you can quickly cycle through the tabs in reverse order, allowing you to easily find and access the tab you need without manually clicking on each individual tab.

Similarity to web browser tab switching

If you're familiar with using web browsers, you may notice that Ctrl + Shift + Tab has a similar function to the shortcut used for backward tab switching in web browsers. This similarity makes it easier to remember and adapt to using this shortcut in Excel.

Just like how Ctrl + Tab moves forward between tabs in web browsers, Ctrl + Shift + Tab allows you to move backward between tabs in Excel. This parallel functionality provides a sense of familiarity and simplifies the learning curve, especially for those who frequently switch between Excel and web browsing tasks.

Overall, Ctrl + Shift + Tab is a valuable shortcut that enhances your tab navigation experience in Excel. By utilizing this shortcut, you can effortlessly move backward between tabs, conveniently revisit recently visited tabs, and benefit from its resemblance to web browser tab switching.


In conclusion, keyboard shortcuts play a crucial role in efficient tab navigation in Excel. By incorporating these shortcuts into your regular spreadsheet work, you can save significant time and effort. We encourage you to practice and familiarize yourself with these shortcuts to optimize your Excel experience. Mastering these shortcuts will contribute to a smoother workflow and increased productivity in Excel.

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