36 Free Excel Training Resources to Take You to SpreadSheet Superstardom
So, you’ve decided to raise your Excel game.
But what next? There are mountains of information out there. And standing at the base of those heights, looking up at a nearly invisible peak that can only be reached by following an uncertain route, is intimidating.
You could tackle it on your own, poring through Microsoft support pages, perusing ancient Excel books (“ancient” as in “from the 90s”), or picking up out-of-context tips from colleagues.
But learning Excel is not a solo adventure — if you want to reach your peak, you’ll need some help.
So, how do you find the best guides? How do you choose the most beneficial route to take? And are there any sherpas who can do the heavy lifting for you?
We kid — no, there are some things to learning Excel (or anything else) that no one can do for you. And sometimes you have to go beyond your comfort zone, climbing above your anchors, to find the right hold over what feels like a vertical drop.
But we are here to help. Like many who came before us, we have stood at the base of the mountain and struggled to find our way to the top.
Unlike those who came before us, we have left our anchors in the cliff’s face for you to follow and use. We have compiled what we believe to be the finest resources for learning excel. From the best of the best to hidden gems.
Whether you’re an advanced
climber user, or a beginner, you will be able to find the right kind of learning path for you.
Blogs are the bread and butter of the internet. Or maybe just the butter — they are spread everywhere. Almost every site has one.
Here are a few of our favorites. Some are well known, some not, and some are from sites that don’t even specialize in Excel.
What do Excel users put in their hair? — Sumproduct.
Where do Excel users go to co-develop the best modeling solutions? — Sumproduct.com
Collaboration is the name of the game with these guys. Boasting over 100 years of combined experience on their team, their expertise range from model scoping to project finance. Their blog is updated daily with a huge range of valuable tutorials. Unfortunately, there is no easy way of finding something specific among their 95 pages of posts. But, if you do decide to scroll through, you’ll definitely find something valuable.
If you’re in the mood to learn something new but aren’t too picky about what that is, pay this site a visit. You can even suggest a topic here.
Post frequency: every 1-2 days
Recommended article: A to Z of Excel Function
Not exactly one article but an A-Z of Excel functions. Considering they have 212 articles and are only on ‘I’ — this is something to keep an eye on.
My Excel Online
If you love it when a blog comes along with some character and personality, let me introduce you to John Michaloudis.
The guy knows how to deliver a tutorial, and you can tell this blog (and site) are made with love and passion. The guy even goes by Chief Inspirational Officer, rather than the more boring ‘executive’ or ‘financial.’
And if that doesn’t sell you, his vast number of blog posts, tutorials, guides, webinars, etc, definitely will.
Post frequency: 4-5 a month
Recommended article: How to use Excel Spreadsheet — Although most of his stuff is more on the advanced side of things, this article shows that there is something for everybody (who has an interest in Excel).
When is an Excel blog not an Excel blog?
When it’s a marketing blog that writes about Excel in as much detail as an actual Excel blog.
I mean, it’s Hubspot. When it comes to quality and value, you can trust Hubspot.
You may have to search ‘Excel’ in the search bar, but for one extra step you get some great Excel articles.
Check this out (although you probably have already) especially if you’re new to Excel or if you have any involvement in marketing.
Post frequency: Daily (everything), Every now and again (Excel) but there’s tons of evergreen Excel content already on the site.
Recommended article: 15 Excel Formulas, Keyboard Shortcuts & Tricks That’ll Save You Lots of Time — We all need shortcuts, so this is as good a place as any to start.
Continuing our ‘great Excel blogs that aren’t exactly Excel blogs but contain great Excel articles’ theme — we have happy.co.uk
This video-heavy blog is more suitable for beginner-level excel users. Nicky, who narrates the videos, has packed them full of easy-to-follow information. And the site is equally filled with articles — from Excel hints and tips to ideas for creating happy workplaces.
Here you have a blog that you can get lost in for hours.
Post frequency: 3-4 a week (general) 1-2 a month (Excel)
Recommended article: 3 things you can do in Excel without Maths — Excel is more than numbers, after all. That’s worth remembering.
This picture says it all.
Would you like an archive of 1000 blog posts to find the information you’re looking for?
Well, pop something in the search bar (Excel-related) and I guarantee you’ll have a selection of quality articles to choose from. Each with their own pleasant-to-read narratives, complete with stick figure drawings. A style choice that presents a light-hearted backdrop to their detailed power BI information.
Post frequency: 3-4 a month
Recommended article: ALL(‘the Bengal Ladies’) — A perfect example of how P3 mixes fun writing with thorough Excel insights.
Many extraordinary people are drawn to Excel. Have a look at our actionable tips from Microsoft MVPs to see exactly what I mean. But with so many unique minds, in whom do you invest your time?
Don’t worry, we’ve listed a handful of the Excel gurus you should be paying attention to.
The first on our list of MVPs, Jeff Lenning needs no introduction.
But we’ll give him one anyway.
Jeff is a Microsoft Certified Trainer and the mind behind excel-university.com. He has written countless articles, is featured in the Journal of Accountancy and California CPA Magazine and has a series of books and courses.
He’s a big player in the Excel field and has helped thousands of accounting professionals to master Excel. As an added bonus, Jeff’s training qualifies for CPE credit if you need it.
Definitely one to follow, whether you’re in accounting or not. He’s certainly not one to keep to himself his ridiculous amount of Excel knowledge.
Where to find him:
For many newcomers, the idea that Excel can be fun seems like a cruel joke.
So, by choosing the online moniker of ‘Excel is fun,’ Mike Girvin has put quite a bit of pressure on his shoulders.
Luckily, the Author of ‘Slaying Excel Dragons’ lives up to his promise. He really does prove Excel to be fun through his 3000+ Excel how-to videos on YouTube.
Mike is also a devoted teacher, with courses in finance, accounting, and statistics. He uses Excel in all his classes to give his students a “working-world-ready business education” (as he puts it).
Not to mention his MVP status.
Where to find him:
This Canadian MVP has committed the last 30 years (at least) to building solutions for Excel, Word, and Access.
Debra moved online in 2000 and has since continued to help Excel users get the most out of the software. Contextures.com is her project of passion and is one of the best places to learn all there is to know about Excel.
Debra has a lot to teach and does a great job doing it.
Where to find her:
What do you get if you cross an Excel MVP with a Magician and a Comedian?
I don’t know — what do you get if you cross an Excel MVP with a magician and a comedian?
Sorry, were you expecting a joke? We’ll leave that to Curt and stick with the introductions.
AKA ‘That Excel Guy,’ Curt Frye is the president of Technology and Society, Incorporated and has a catalogue of over 40 books and more than 60 courses. He has been the keynote speaker at multiple events, including the Law and Magic conference and the ATD-Cascadia annual conference.
Curt is also an active performer — he has appeared in 1300 improv comedy shows. This led him to develop his own approach (and consequently write a book on the matter): Improspectives: Applying Improv Comedy Techniques to Life and Business.
Curt is a great example of someone who has mastered two vastly different skills and merged them together to create something unique.
Where to find him:
Jan Karel Pieterse
Jan is first and foremost a consultant and trainer.
An MVP since 2004, he’s definitely made his way around the Excel world. He runs JKP, where he keeps all of his goodies. Goodies that include many in-depth articles and stacks of resources.
He updated Excel 2007 VBA Programming For Dummies with the legend John Walkenbach. And most notably he has developed useful utilities for Excel, including NameManager, RefTreeAnalyser, and Flexfind.
Where to find him:
Here we have a list of great excel sites. The all-rounders. They may have blogs, courses, or provide services. But we’re not focusing on any one thing here — we’re ‘Ctrl+A’ing the whole package.
If you like to learn Excel the difficult way, this site is definitely not for you.
Niels Weterings started Excel Easy 10 years ago during his studies at the University of Amsterdam with one idea in mind — to make this otherwise complicated matter as simple as possible. Nowadays it is one of the most popular Excel hubs on the ‘net.
Be it explaining Excel basics, functions, or how to create a chart, there’s something refreshing about Excel Easy’s straightforwardness. If you have troubles understanding Excel, we strongly urge you to visit his site and make your life a little easier.
OzGrid has long been a powerhouse for Excel information.
Dave Hawley (who is sadly no longer with us) and his wife Raina Hawley created OzGrid in 2000. The duo published a multitude of books dedicated to Excel, and Raina continues to maintain a highly active and engaging forum. There you can find tutorials, videos, templates and friendly discussions between fellow Excel enthusiasts.
It’s been said there’s no such thing as a stupid question. I think we all know that for the lie it is. But whatever your need and no matter the intelligence of your question, you will be treated with respect and helpfulness at OzGrid.
Purna Duggirala has been helping his followers become awesome in Excel since 2004.
Nicknamed Chandoo, Purna is one of the most active and popular Excel bloggers on the Net.
One word that best describes Chandoo’s content — diversity. From tutorials about basic Excel and Excel formula helper to advanced training, vlookup and VBA classes — he’s covered it all. Give him a visit and make sure to take your time while looking through his database.
You can do (Excel) with Chandoo.
I know you know that it’s not what you know, it’s who you know, ya know?
Well, MrExcel is only one person, and very likely you don’t know him. But he is followed by a community of Excel mastermind gurus… who you probably don’t know either, and who probably also don’t know MrExcel. But these gurus could easily answer any question you might throw their way, no matter how complicated and seemingly impossible it was.
You may know none of these people, but luckily for you MrExcel has created the cocktail party of Excel messaging boards. It’s an easy way to rub elbows with and get help from both the experts and the community of Excel nerds that lurk there. You can check it out here.
No. Not that Trump.
Sumit Bansal, TrumpExcel’s creator, started this project in 2013 and still sails strong to this very day. He found inspiration in learning something new about Excel every day and decided to pass it on to the next person… or the next couple of thousand people. Which is roughly how many monthly visitors this site has.
So join his ever-growing community and get the most out of your Excel experience.
The best way to learn is by doing. Taking a course is a great way to get background information and a headstart — but you still have to do the doing.
Because Excel has a great deal of specific uses, there are heaps of courses. Here we list the best places to find them. Price, length, and difficulty vary, so it’s worth taking your time to find the right one for you.
The artist formerly known as Lynda.com is one of the veterans in subscription-based online education.
Now called LinkedIn Learning, it has deep roots into employment spaces. Everything that is taught on it is practical and applicable — think of it as the Netflix or Hulu of education. Its library holds more than 80,000 videos on a broad range of different subjects, and the Excel courses we came across are more than satisfactory.
Price: $25 per month
Courses we liked: Weekly Excel Tips and Excel 2016: Advanced Formulas and Functions
Question: What happens when you team an online learning platform up with some of the world’s leading universities?
Answer: You place yourself just one click away from achieving world domination through all the useful courses across dozens of subjects offered by Coursera.
And Coursera really does seem to have it all — from data science to musical theory to photography. Since the platform wants to remain accessible to as many people as possible, you can take single courses instead of paying for a subscription, with official certification at the end being a bit more pricey.
Price: $50 per month (single course purchase is also possible)
Course we liked: Introduction to Data Analysis Using Excel
You will never get bored while on Udemy. Ever.
Every month the platform updates its library with roughly 800 new courses, so believe us when we say so. Compared to the competition Udemy is a bit pricey, but you can read reviews of former students before you make up your mind about taking a course.
Hint: There are existing coupons all over the Internet, so if you are lucky, a $200 course might cost you less than 70% of the original price.
Price: $10 per month for new users (single course purchase is also possible)
Course we liked: Beginner to Pro in Excel: Financial Modeling and Valuation
Even with being the new kid on the online education block, Goskills is a formidable opponent to run against — especially in the field of Excel and project management.
Currently, you can find more than 70 courses on subjects like Microsoft Office, Adobe software, project management, web development and more.
Alongside learning valued skills such as Scrum and Advanced Excel, you can rediscover old essentials as well — like leadership and writing for business. So give it a go — it’s very affordable compared to other options.
Price: $39 per month for all courses; $29 per month for a single course access
Course we liked: Microsoft Excel for Mac
YouTube is a hard beast to master. Many channels have valuable insights but no delivery skills, while others can deliver but have nothing to say.
Here we’ve listed a few YouTube channels that balance these two talents gracefully.
Leila Gharani’s YouTube channel has got that winning formula.
And it’s not just the production value or her easy-to-digest delivery, it’s also the amount of care she puts into the content.
Every video she creates has value and they keep getting better.
Some people just know how to use the internet to show off their talents. Leila has done this perfectly. Go watch a few videos. Then you’ll probably end up subscribing. Then you’ll probably end up on her site. Then you’ll probably end up taking one of her courses. She’s that good!
Post frequency: Every Week
Recommended video: 4 Hidden Excel Dashboard Design Tips for Beautiful Reports — This video is proof that you can have style AND substance.
Anyone who finds their way to Mynda Treacy’s YouTube channel is not only in for a treat but for the long haul as well.
You’ll keep coming back to this channel again and again for its well made, interesting and useful tutorials.
Mynda has been going for 20+ years and is eager to help her community thrive in Excel.
Post frequency: Every week
Recommended video: 3 Easy Tips for Better Excel Chart Titles — Just have a look at the comments, this super useful video has helped anyone looking to make better chart titles.
Technology for Teachers and Students
Technology for Teachers and Students is an incredible YouTube channel — but a bit of a mouthful to say.
However, his videos are clear, charming, easy to follow and well executed. Not to mention there are over 200 of them. Made for all levels of Excel users. And with 40,832,155 views, he must be doing something right.
You’ll come for the excel vids, but you could well end up staying for the multitude of tools that this channel helps viewers with.
Obviously this is designed with academics in mind, but trust me — there’s something here for everyone.
Post Frequency: Every Monday.
Recommended Video: The Beginner’s Guide to Excel – Excel Basics Tutorial — Simply enough, a beginner’s guide. But one of the best.
My E-lesson has tutorials in both English and Hindi. Using the first- and third-most-spoken languages to deliver your message is one way to reach a broad audience.
And with nearly 1500 videos to choose from, that’s an incredible amount of content no matter which language you speak (an even incredibler amount if you speak both).
You will find some videos that leave something to be desired when it comes to technical quality. But they are getting much better. Guru has a pleasant charm and easy-to-follow-along teaching style. So, no matter the production levels, you will gain a lot of Excel knowledge.
Plus, not many Excel YouTubers will deliver such usable information in 2 languages.
Kudos, Guru, यश.
Post frequency: up to 4 per week
Recommended video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEkoUqvRAFU — For those looking to gain the Microsoft Office Specialist: Excel Associate Certification, this first video of a comprehensive series will set you on the right path. Logical instructions are given in a way that not only tell you the how, but also the why.
Do you prefer consistency in your video tutorials? Do you hate the sound of someone’s voice telling you what to do?
If so, then this channel may be for you.
Excel A-Z has nearly 1500 tutorials. All in the same style, all with the same calming music (no speaking here). It’s not for everyone but if you like one video, you’ll probably like them all.
Each tutorial is a step by step visual guide that covers a huge range of excel functions. Definitely worth a quick look to see if it suits your learning style.
Post Frequency: Daily
Recommended video: Learn 450 excel formulas and functions in one video — If you have a spare 11 hours, love Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, and want to learn 450 excel functions, have I got the video for you! Like I said, all these videos follow the same structure, so why not start with the biggest.
I hope you enjoyed this list. We aim to keep it relatively short. Quality over quantity and all that.
But if you know of a glorious resource we may have missed, let us know in the comments. If we think it deserves a place on our list, you could see it there.
Thanks for reading everyone, and good luck!