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How to Use Excel on Mac [Step-by Step-Guide]

July 26, 2022
10.6K Views

Mac users often face the challenge of not having pre-installed Microsoft Excel software on their devices, hindering their productivity. 

The question then arises: what can be done to overcome this hurdle? The answer is simple - by downloading, installing, and utilizing the Excel software on their Mac, users can seamlessly meet their data analysis requirements. You can also save the spreadsheets you make using WPS Excel on your Mac and then open them in Numbers, Apple's spreadsheet programme.

Part 1: Why Do You Need Excel on a Mac?The powerful spreadsheet

Excel is an incredibly versatile and powerful spreadsheet software that individuals and businesses rely on for tasks like data analysis, financial modeling, and budgeting. Without it, Mac users might find it challenging to manage and analyze large amounts of data, create charts and graphs, or perform complex calculations, which can significantly impact productivity and decision-making abilities.

Fortunately, there are many options available to download and use on Mac, including the built-in Numbers, Microsoft Excel, WPS Spreadsheet, and more. These options allow users to perform tasks efficiently and effectively to meet their needs.

Part 2: How to Download WPS Spreadsheet on a Mac?

WPS Spreadsheet is a software program designed for creating, editing, and analyzing spreadsheets, similar to Microsoft Excel. It is part of the WPS Office Suite, which includes other productivity tools like WPS Writer and WPS Presentation.

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WPS Office- Free All-in-One Office Suite
  • Use Word, Excel, and PPT for FREE, No Ads.

  • Edit PDF files with the powerful PDF toolkit.

  • Microsoft-like interface. Easy to learn. 100% Compatibility.

  • Boost your productivity with WPS's abundant free Word, Excel, PPT, and CV templates.

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Algirdas Jasaitis

Trustpilot rating:  4.8 out of 5 stars based on over 3,000 reviews. Users have praised its ease of use, compatibility with Microsoft Excel files, and its comprehensive range of features

Features: Write, Spreadsheet, Presentation, PDF

Compatibility: WPS Spreadsheet is compatible with Microsoft Excel, meaning you can open and edit Excel files without any issues.

Templates: WPS Spreadsheet provides a range of pre-designed templates for various purposes, including budgeting, scheduling, and data analysis.

Data Analysis: WPS Spreadsheet includes a range of tools for data analysis, including pivot tables, charts, and graphing tools

Collaboration: WPS Spreadsheet allows for real-time collaboration with other users, making it easy to work on spreadsheets with a team.

Security: WPS Spreadsheet includes password protection options, so you can keep your data secure.

Cloud integration: WPS Spreadsheet integrates with popular cloud storage services like Google Drive and Dropbox, making it easy to access and share your spreadsheets from anywhere.

Here is a guide how to download WPS Spreadsheet on Mac:

1. Go to https://www.wps.com/office/spreadsheet/ on your web browser.

2. Scroll the browser window to see the section marked "Free Download".

3. Hover your mouse over Mac and select Download.

4. Next, open the installation package and follow the instructions to install WPS Office for Mac. Typically, you may open the downloaded file with a single click by finding it in the lower corner of your browser.

Part 3: How to Download Microsoft Excel on a Mac?

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet software developed by Microsoft. It is part of the Microsoft Office Suite, which also includes programs like Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook. Excel is used for organizing, manipulating, and analyzing data, as well as creating charts and graphs.

Trustpilot rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars based on over 1,500 reviews. Users have praised its functionality, versatility, and ease of use.

Features:

Data organization and analysis: Excel allows for storage, organization, and analysis of large amounts of data in spreadsheets.

Calculation and modeling: Excel provides powerful capabilities for complex calculations and interactive modeling.

Data entry and formatting: Excel offers various tools for efficient data entry and formatting.

Collaboration and sharing: Excel enables easy collaboration with others on spreadsheets through shared workbooks, co-authoring, and commenting.

Integration with other tools and software: Excel integrates with other Microsoft Office tools and third-party tools and services.

Follow these step to download MS Excel for Mac:

1. Purchase a subscription to Office 365. Before you may permanently download Microsoft Excel, you must first obtain an Office 365 membership. You'll need a Microsoft account to purchase a subscription.

If you want to try Office 365 for free for a month, you can download a free trial instead.

2. In your web browser, navigate to http://www.office.com/myaccount/. If you're logged in, this will take you to your Office subscription page. If you haven't already, log in using your email address and password.

3. Install Office by clicking the Install button. This is the blue button on the page's right side. It will appear next to your active subscription.

4. Click Install. This is the blue button at the bottom-right corner of the window.

5. Install Microsoft Office 365. This step will differ depending on your computer's operating system. Do the following after double-clicking the Office setup file:

6. Open Excel. Microsoft Excel is included with every edition of Office 365, therefore you may locate it when the installation is complete.

Excel is now available.

Part 4: How to Use the Built-in Mac Numbers?

Mac Numbers is a spreadsheet software developed by Apple Inc. It is a part of the iWork suite, which includes Pages and Keynote. Numbers is designed to make it easy to create and edit spreadsheets, similar to Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets

Trustpilot rating:  4.3 out of 5 stars based on over 50 reviews. Users have praised its user interface, compatibility with Microsoft Excel, and its ability to handle complex data analysis tasks.

Features:

Templates: Mac Numbers provides a range of pre-designed templates for various purposes, including budgeting, scheduling, and data analysis

Collaboration: Numbers allows for real-time collaboration with other users, making it easy to work on spreadsheets with a team.

Compatibility: Numbers is compatible with Microsoft Excel, meaning you can open and edit Excel files without any issues.

Charts and Graphs: Numbers includes a variety of chart and graph templates, making it easy to visualize your data in a way that's easy to understand.

Formula and Function: Mac Numbers includes a wide range of built-in formulas and functions for performing calculations, such as summing up values, finding averages, and calculating percentages.

Interactive Tables: Mac Numbers allows you to create interactive tables, which can be sorted and filtered to make it easier to find the data you need.

Here are the steps to create a new spreadsheet in Numbers:

1. Open Numbers on your Mac. You can find it in the Applications folder or Launchpad.

2. Click "New Document" or select "File" > "New" from the menu bar.

3. Choose a template from the available options, or select "Blank" to start with a blank spreadsheet.

4. Begin entering your data in the cells. You can add text, numbers, or formulas.

5. To format the spreadsheet, select the cells you want to format, then use the formatting tools in the Format sidebar.

6. To add a chart or graph, select the data you want to visualize, then click "Chart" in the toolbar. Choose the type of chart you want to create and customize it as needed.

7. To collaborate with others, click the "Collaborate" button in the toolbar. You can invite others to view or edit the spreadsheet, and they can make changes in real-time.

8. To save the spreadsheet, select "File" > "Save" from the menu bar. Give the spreadsheet a name and choose a location to save it.

Part 5: What are the Differences between Excel on Mac and Excel on Windows?

There are several differences between Excel on Mac and Excel on Windows. Here are some of the key differences:

User interface: The user interface of Excel on Mac and Excel on Windows is different. The Mac version has a more streamlined and modern interface that is consistent with other Mac apps, while the Windows version has a more traditional interface with a ribbon menu.

Features: The Mac version of Excel has some limitations compared to the Windows version. For example, it doesn't support macros, PowerPivot, or Power Query. However, the Mac version does have some features that are not available in the Windows version, such as the ability to save spreadsheets as PDFs directly from the File menu.

Compatibility: Excel spreadsheets created on one platform may not work perfectly on the other platform due to compatibility issues. This is particularly true if the spreadsheet uses advanced features that are only available on one platform.

Add-ins: Excel add-ins are not always cross-platform compatible. Some add-ins may work on one platform but not the other.

Shortcuts: Keyboard shortcuts are different on Mac and Windows. Excel on Windows uses the Ctrl key, while Excel on Mac uses the Command key.

Part 6: Tips and Tricks for Using Excel on Mac

If you're using Excel on a Mac, you'll want to be familiar with some useful tips and tricks to help you work more efficiently

Shortcut Keys

Crt + A: Selects all the cells in the current worksheet.

Ctrl + C: Copies the selected cells.

Ctrl + V: Pastes the copied cells.

Ctrl + X: Cuts the selected cells.

Ctrl + Z: Undoes the last action.

Ctrl + Y: Redoes the last action.

Ctrl + F: Opens the Find and Replace dialog box.

Ctrl + H: Opens the Find and Replace dialog box with the Replace tab selected.

Ctrl + T: Opens the Create Table dialog box.

Ctrl + S: Saves the current worksheet.

Ctrl + N: Creat a new workbook

Ctrl + O: Open an existing workbook

Formulas

SUM: Adds the values of a range of cells.

AVERAGE: Calculates the average of a range of cells.

MAX: Finds the highest value in a range of cells.

MIN: Finds the lowest value in a range of cells.

IF: Returns one value if a condition is true and another value if it is false.

COUNTIF: Counts the number of cells in a range that meet a certain criteria.

VLOOKUP: Searches for a value in the first column of a range of cells and returns a value in the same row from a specified column.

FAQs about Using Excel on Mac

Q: How do I troubleshoot Excel on a Mac?

If you're experiencing issues with Excel on your Mac, there are several troubleshooting steps you can take. Try restarting your Mac, checking for updates, opening in safe mode, checking specific files, and resetting Excel's preferences.

Q: How to Make Excel Default on Mac?

If you prefer to use Excel as your default application for opening spreadsheet files, you can do so by right-clicking on an Excel file and selecting "Get Info". In the "Open with" section, choose Excel from the dropdown menu and click "Change All". This will set Excel as the default application for opening all spreadsheet files.

Q: How do I convert Excel to Numbers on a Mac?

If you want to convert an Excel file to Numbers, you can do so by opening the Excel file in Numbers and either saving it as a Numbers document or exporting it as a Numbers document from the "File" menu. To save as a Numbers document, simply click "File" and "Save" or "Save As", and choose "Numbers" as the file format. To export as a Numbers document, choose "File", "Export To", and then select "Numbers" as the file format.

Summary

In conclusion, Mac users can easily access and use Excel software to manage their data and boost their productivity. Excel is a powerful spreadsheet software relied upon by individuals and businesses for data analysis, financial modeling, and budgeting.

If you're looking for a reliable and cost-effective alternative to Microsoft Excel on your Mac, WPS Office is definitely worth considering. With its user-friendly interface and compatibility with Excel files, it provides a seamless experience for those looking to perform spreadsheet tasks on their Mac devices.


15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.