## Merge three columns into one list

The above image demonstrates a formula that adds values in three different columns into one column.

#### Table of Contents

## 1. Merge three columns into one list - Excel 365

Excel 365 subscribers can access new array manipulation formulas that make working with arrays and cell ranges much easier, one of those new functions is the VSTACK function.

It allows you to merge multiple cell ranges vertically, meaning the second cell range/array is joined below the first cell range/array. The result is a dynamic array formula that spills values below as far as needed.

This example shows how to merge three nonadjacent cell ranges with different sizes, cell range B3:B7 has five values. Cell range D3:D4 has two values, and F3:F6 has four values. The formula is entered in cell H3 and the array values are spilled to cell H3 and cells below as far as needed.

Excel 365 dynamic array formula in cell H3:

### Explaining formula

The VSTACK function combines cell ranges or arrays. Joins data to the first blank cell at the bottom of a cell range or array (vertical stacking)

Function syntax: VSTACK(array1,[array2],...)

## 2. Merge three columns into one list - earlier Excel versions

This example works in earlier Excel versions from 2007 to Excel 2019, it requires a more complicated formula because these versions don't have the VSTACK function.

The IFERROR function is used a lot in this example and I want to warn you that it also handles all formula errors, this may

Formula in H3:

Copy cell H2 and paste to the cells below.

### Explaining formula in cell H2

The IFERROR function moves the calculation to the next part (formula2) when the first part (formula1) begins to return errors. That is also true for the second part (formula2), when errors occur the calculation continues with the third part (formula3)

IFERROR(IFERROR(*formula1*, *formula2*), *formula3*)

Formula1 extracts values from List1. Formula2 extracts values from List2. Formula3 extracts values from List3.

#### Step 1 - Count cells vertically

The ROWS function counts rows in a cell reference. H2:$H$2 is special, it expands as the formula is copied to the cells below.

ROWS(H2:$H$2)

returns 1.

#### Step 2 - Return value

The INDEX function returns values from a cell range based on a row number and column number.

INDEX($B$3:$B$7, ROWS(H2:$H$2))

becomes

INDEX($B$3:$B$7, 1)

becomes

INDEX({"AA";"DD";"CC";"GG";"HH"}, 1)

and returns "AA" in cell H3.

#### Step 3 - Loop

When the formula starts returning errors the second part of the formula begins.

INDEX($D$3:$D$4, ROWS(H2:$H$2)-ROWS($B$3:$B$7))

It also takes into account the number of values returned from the first cell range, for example in cell H8:

INDEX($D$3:$D$4, ROWS(H7:$H$2)-ROWS($B$3:$B$7))

becomes

INDEX($D$3:$D$4, 6-ROWS($B$3:$B$7))

becomes

INDEX($D$3:$D$4, 6-5)

becomes

INDEX({"MM";"WW"}, 1)

and returns "MM" in cell H8.

## 3. Merge three columns into one list - Excel 2003 and earlier versions

Formula in cell H3:

**Named ranges**

List1 (A2:A6)

List2 (B2:B3)

List3 (C2:C5)

## 4. Get Excel file

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## Functions in this article

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### 29 Responses to “Merge three columns into one list”

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**Contact Oscar**

You can contact me through this contact form

Thanks A LOT!!! I really mean it. Lifesavers you guys are!

Can you translate this into an earlier version of Excel please....I REALLY wish I had a clue how to use VBA (or how to write these formulas myself!)

Shawna,

Yes, the formula is large but it is not an array formula. I have included the excel 2003 solution in this blog post. Read above and you can also get an Excel 2003 file.

Thanks, now we're cooking!! Anyway to remove the blanks from the resulting "merged" list?

nevermind...sorry I bothered you, I can't get the new formula to work at all, so it's pointless. Thanks for the time and effort anyway.

Hmmm, tried again and I got it to work, but I still come up with zeros if one of my Lists has a blank. This is SO frustrating!!

Shawna,

I hope this user defined function works in excel 2003:

Where to copy the code?Press Alt-F11 to open visual basic editor

Press with left mouse button on Module on the Insert menu

Copy and paste the user defined function into module

Exit visual basic editor

How to use user defined function in excelSelect a cell

Type MergeRanges(A1:C10, Sheet2!A3:B10) in formula bar, you can have as many range arguments you like.

Press Ctrl + SHIFT + ENTER

Add more cells to your selection.

Press with left mouse button in Formula bar.

Press Ctrl + SHIFT + ENTER

I wish I could try it, but I don't know how to create VBA. I'm a novice, though I did try a few times from random directions online, but it didn't work. :(

LOL, sorry...you gave me directions to follow, DUH! It's early, I'm not awake yet, so the attention hasn't kicked in. I'll let you know how I make out when I get to work. Thanks!

Nope...I set up the following example:

Heading1 Heading2 Heading3 Merge aa aa bb hh bb

cc ii 1 cc

2 dd

dd jj 3 dd

ee ee

kk 4 ff

ff ff

gg gg

#VALUE!

#VALUE!

#VALUE!

I pasted the code in the VBA module and typed the statement:

=MergeRanges(A2:A11, B2:B11, C2:C11) into the Merge cell. Then copied it down. However, notice only the A range merged. Also, the merged column repeated dd and ff (the only ones preceeded by a space). Any idea what I messed up?

Shawna,

Get the Excel file

udf-merge-ranges.xls

Udf is in cell range B3:B24, sheet1.

Can we please discuss via email so I can attach an example of what I am doing? My typed example above was obviously worthless! LOL

Thanks! :)

Shawna,

Yes, you can use the contact form on this page: Contact me

Hello,

I gotr your Excel workbook and wanted to know how to combine lists that are 2000 items in length?

Hi Oscar,

Here I found one interesting solution to merge table to single row. It could be useful for you :)

https://www.cpearson.com/excel/TableToColumn.aspx

I modified formula with INDEX() function (array formula) and like result :)

=INDEX(Table;1+MOD(ROW()-ROW(MergedRange);ROWS(Table));1+TRUNC((ROW()-ROW(MergedRange))/ROWS(Table);0))

Best regards

The solution is to merge table to single column, not row...

BatTodor,

Thanks for sharing!

Brilliant work, I converted List1, List2,List3 into dynamic range.

ALIST = =OFFSET($A$1,0,0,COUNTA($A:$A),1)

BLIST = =OFFSET($B$1,0,0,COUNTA($B:$B),1)

CLIST = =OFFSET($C$1,0,0,COUNTA($C:$C),1)

DLIST = =OFFSET($D$1,0,0,COUNTA($D:$D),1)

Here link to solution with screenshot.

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/14774806/how-to-combine-4-column-into-1-column

Zuberr,

thank you!

This is a very useful formula. But, here the list names have fixed ranges and if the ranges expand or reduces, then the formula does not hold good. For example, list1 range A1:A20 with data upto A7, list2 range B1:B20 with data upto row b17 and list3 range C1:C20 with data upto C10. In simple words, the ranges need to be dynamic. Can anybody help with a formula (not Vba). Regards.

R Vijayakumar,

Try this:

https://www.get-digital-help.com/2011/05/17/excel-charts-use-dynamic-ranges-to-add-new-values-to-both-chart-and-drop-down-list/

i have tried in different ways and found this array formula works....

=IFERROR(IFERROR(IFERROR(INDEX(MultiPlyYarnPRCount, MATCH(0, COUNTIF(L$7:$L7, MultiPlyYarnPRCount), 0)), INDEX(MultiPlyYarnDHPRCount, MATCH(0, COUNTIF(L$7:$L7, MultiPlyYarnDHPRCount), 0))),INDEX(MultiPlyYarnDHCRCount, MATCH(0, COUNTIF(L$7:$L7, MultiPlyYarnDHCRCount),0))),"")

MultiPlyYarnPRCount (I8:I100),MultiPlyYarnDHPRCount (J8:J100) and MultiPlyYarnDHCRCount (K8:K100) are three ranges in three columns, each having varying lengths of data i.e. first range has data in only one row, second range 23 rows and third one has 18 rows of data. This formula works fine.

I request your suggestion for fine-tuning the formula if possible.

Regards,

I really need help!

Have similar but bigger issue

Have three columns in excel:

Column A: Category

Column B: Value

Column C: Value

I want to consolidate the list such that if I have a row like:

A1=Car | B1=Ford | C1=Toyota

A2=Scooter | B1=Honda | C1=(blank)

Gives me a result:

A1=Car | B1=Ford

A2=Car | B2=Toyota

A3=Scooter | A3=Honda

Sorry, correction:

I want to consolidate the list such that if I have a row like:

A1=Car | B1=Ford | C1=Toyota

A2=Scooter | B2=Honda | C2=(blank)

Gives me a result:

A1=Car | B1=Ford

A2=Car | B2=Toyota

A3=Scooter | B3=Honda

How can I merge 5 columns?

thanks

anthony,

The easiest way to go is to use a simple user defined function:

Where to copy the code?

Press Alt-F11 to open visual basic editor

Press with left mouse button on Module on the Insert menu

Copy and paste the user defined function into module

Exit visual basic editor

How to use user defined function in excel

Select a cell

Type =MergeRanges(A1:C10, Sheet2!A3:B10) in formula bar, you can have as many range arguments you like.

Press Ctrl + SHIFT + ENTER

Add more cells to your selection.

Press with left mouse button in Formula bar.

Press Ctrl + SHIFT + ENTER

Hi people,

Here's a solution i'm trying to solve using the functionality/formula provided at the top of this post .

Let's substitute List1, List 2 and List3 ranges with dynamic ranges that are using offsets when referring to data filter results elsewhere in my workbook. these dynamic ranges sometimes return no data as there are no results at times in my filters . my problem is, when one of the dynamic ranges has no data in it, that then corrupts the merge.

My mind is thinking incorporating ISBLANK or something similar to the above IFERROR INDEX ROWS formula where an empty dynamic range doesn't then corrupt the merge.

Hope that makes sense. Am drowning in development deadlines, any help would be much appreciated.

Hi Geoff

Have you read this article?

https://www.get-digital-help.com/2010/05/18/merge-two-columns-with-possible-blank-cells-in-excel-formula/

I've been looking at this article as well as the article on "Merge two columns with possible blank cells", but I'm trying to find out how to do a union of the two:

How do I merge multiple (3+) columns into one, where there are blank or #N/A cells involved?

I can use the Two-Into-One article just fine for handling blanks (or changing isblank to isna to handle #N/A values), but I haven't been able to get it to handle 3+ columns even after trying to combine the parsing of both articles together.