How to randomize a list in excel | Excel Random Sort

In this tutorial we’ll learn ways to randomize list in excel this can be used to sort random excel rows, shuffle cells in excel by using the randomize function in excel (a.k.a RAND)

Excel has all sorts of sorting options like ascending, descending, by color and even a custom sort. But it doesn’t have a dedicated sorting option to randomize in excel.

You may need to randomize excel rows to get a list of winners or to create a random list of students to select and much more. Let’s see how you can randomize list in excel.

Randomize List Excel using RAND Function

There is no proper function to randomize excel list but instead there is a function to generate random numbers i.e. RAND(). We have to use this function to achieve this:

Let’s say we have the following dataset containing names of the students and we want to create a randomizer in excel.
Randomize a list in Excel

  1. In the adjacent column B, go to cell B2 and type =RAND()
    Randomize a list in Excel
  2. Drag and copy the formula down. This is generate random numbers for all cells.
    Randomize a list in Excel
  3. Select all the cells containing the random numbers and under Home tab, go to Sort & Filter and select Sort Largest to Smallest.
    Sort Largest to Smallest in Excel
  4. You’ll see a dialog box of Sort Warning. Just select Expand the selection and hit OK.
  5. Once done, you can see that the names are now in a random sort.
    Randomize a list in Excel

This is the way how to randomize in excel a given list.

Excel Rand is a volatile function, meaning if anything is changed in the worksheet the RAND function will run again and generate new numbers. To prevent the random numbers from calculating again & again just convert the RAND formula to text.  You can also just delete the column having RAND formula if your work is done.

You can also you the same steps to randomize multiple columns.


That was all about how to randomize list in excel.

I hope this article was helpful to you and explained you how to use excel sort random, randomize function in excel or build your own randomizer in excel.

If you have any questions or tips, I’d love to hear them in the comment section below.

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