Microsoft Excel – Columns Displaying Numbers instead of Letters

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We have recently dealt with a problem that a customer had reported to us about their Excel spreadsheet columns suddenly appearing as numbers instead of the expected letters.

We doubted this very much as none of us had heard of it before, but no, there is was, columns as numbers just like this:



This was a bit baffling to us, but is very easy to fix. This type of formatting for the columns is called R1C1 reference style. It is not a problem as such, just a different way of doing things, but as most people will want their Excel columns as letters, there is an easy way to revert this.

To show this easier, we have created a quick video guide on how to put this back to letter formatting:

VIDEO

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