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How to quickly sort rows to match another column in Excel?

doc sort match to another column 1
If you have two lists in a sheet, and both of them have same values but in different order, how can you sort one list to match another list as below screenshot shown? In this article, I will introduce a formula to help you quickly solve it in Excel.
Sort rows to match another column

arrow blue right bubble Sort rows to match another column

To sort rows to match another column, here is a formula can help you.

1. Select a blank cell next to the column you want to resort, for instance B1, and then enter this formula =MATCH(A1,C:C,FALSE), and drag autofill handle down to apply this formula. See screenshot:
doc sort match to another column 2

Tip: C:C is the column you want to resort based on, and A1 is the first cell of the column you want to sort.

2. And then a list of numbers are displaying in the formula cells. Select the list you want to resort and the numbers list, and click Data > Sort. See screenshot:
doc sort match to another column 3

3. And in the Sort dialog, select the column which contains the formulas from Column drop down list, and select Values and Smallest to Largest from the Sort On and Order drop down lists separately. See screenshot:
doc sort match to another column 4

4. Click OK. And the column A is sorted to match column C.
doc sort match to another column 5

Tip: You can delete the formula column after sorting if you do not need it any more.


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Comments (22)
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This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Nic.. it helped me lot.. Thank you
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
You could just use a sort without the formula though. Its not needed
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
How, do you do that?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
how do you do this with two columns that need to be matched to one. for example column a has number value, column b has letter value that is dependent on column a, and column c has the same numbers as column a, but out of order.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
So you want to reorder the column c based on column a and keep column c no change?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Excel requests either 1(less than), 0(equal), or -1(greater than) for the [match type]. I am not entirely sure what FALSE would be.

Is there another way for doing this when the columns are not the same length and the data is not identical? (example A1,A3,B2,C4,A5,C9 compared vs. X1, B2, Q4, A1, D7, A3)
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
so, you want to sort A1,A3,B2,C4A5,C9 based on X1,B2,Q4,A1,D7,A3?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
This is what I am trying to accomplish but I can find no solutions:

I have one spreadsheet of AR for one customer, (downloaded from QB), which I have pared down to four columns: Invoice number, date, amount billed and status.
I have a second spreadsheet (downloaded from the customer) with six columns: Invoice number, date, amount, status, date paid and check number.

I need to merge/align the two spreadsheets so that the invoice numbers in both “A” columns match up with each other and all other data remains intact with that invoice number. So, I am envisioning, a row looking like this:
A1:invoice number, B1:date, C1:amount billed, D1:status (All pulled from spreadsheet 1), E1:invoice number, F1:date, G1:amount, H1:status, I1:date paid, J1:check number (All pulled from spreadsheet 2)

Of course, if there are no matches from the second spreadsheet to the invoice number in Column A, then Columns E thru J would be blank.

Thank you very much for any help with this issue.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Did you ever get an answer/solution for this? Exactly what I need.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Anyone can help how to sort like below:

Column A is having and column B is having

1 1

1 2

2 1

2 2

But I need both column as


1

1

2

2
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I do not understand your problem, can you give me more details?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Thanks a lot for this post.. made my work a lot easier :)
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
It doesn't help if the info is not exactly the same in both columns eg. column 1 has C,D,B, A and column 2 has B,D,C,A,G,R,T,H. When sorting column A to match column B, they won't match up. Any solution for this?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Sorry, the method only work while two columns have same numuber rows and same data but in different order.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Please share some way to sort if the info is not exactly the same in both columns eg. column 1 has C,D,B, A and column 2 has B,D,C,A,G,R,T,H.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hey Sujith,

Did you find a solution because I have this exact problem. Please help
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Daniella/Sujith,
How would the unique members of the resorted column be ordered? If they are numeric or alpha entries, then the ordering is simple; otherwise, it is less intuitive. May be easiest to isolate the 1-1 matching rows between the ref column and subject column, apply the ordering approach detailed above on that subset, then utilize a custom sort on the entire column as a final step. All of this is highly dependent on what type of data you have and ordering you expect to achieve.
-MH
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
1 52 63 14 2 HOW CAN above two column data sort same data in one row
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi, Great article!
I am wondering. If in the example above, column A does not have the value G2, this means that the sorting operation will be out of sync; 1,3,4,5,6,7,8. (missing a match for G2 on row index 2). Assuming that we want the rest of the data to line up, how can we resolve this without manually changing each line?
Is it possible to displace column A and use column B as a row index instead?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
A lot of people are asking this question (on a 4 year old post) but I haven't found an answer.

I have 4 unique columns of time stamps from 4 sources. Not all the time stamps match up. I might have 0230, 0236, 0241, 0250 in one column and 0231, 0234, 0236, 0240, 0245, 0250, 0251 in another column. Is there away to have excel match the columns and insert empty cells as needed?
So instead of:
0230 0231
0236 0234
0241 0236 etc

It would re-order it to:
0230
0231
0234
0236 0236
0240
0241
0245
0250 0250
0251

I have about 13,000 rows I need to do this to across 4 columns so adding by hand or inserting rows is not feasible.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi, JOAT, you can use this formula:

=IFERROR(VLOOKUP(G1,$I$1:$I$8,1,FALSE)
See screenshot:
https://www.extendoffice.com/images/stories/comments/sun-comment/doc-lookup-formula-1.png
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Annn the formatting for that comment broke.

It would re-order it to:
0230
...........0231
...........0234
0236 0236
...........0240
0241
............0245
0250 0250
............0251

Is what I meant by insert empty cells as needed in each column
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