Top free and paid Excel training courses for business users
A selection of free and premium Excel training resources that help you develop the valuable skills your business needs
You likely know that putting your information into a spreadsheet can help you keep it organized, but learning Microsoft Excel has always seemed like more work than it's worth. Not true.
These days, there are plenty of excellent free and paid Excel courses for those looking to build their skills from scratch, or move into advanced training. Completing an Excel course can even help boost your value to a company, but knowing where to start can be challenging.
Which course is right for me?
Not everyone needs to master every Excel function. It’s important to understand what the Excel training levels are and what you’ll gain from each. With this understanding, you’ll find the right Excel training resource for your needs.
Most Excel training is divided into three levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Here’s what to expect from each:
Beginner Excel Training
As you might have guessed, beginner Excel training is meant for those new to spreadsheets. It's particularly useful for understanding the basic concepts, and will likely suit most people across a business.
In beginner Excel training, you’ll learn how to build spreadsheets from scratch, enter data, format cells, adjust rows and columns, sort data, the basic functions, and more.
Intermediate Excel training
Intermediate Excel training is a step up from the beginner course, designed for those likely to need some of the software's more technical tools.
In intermediate Excel training, you’ll learn to create advanced Excel projects and get Excel auto-populate templates. You’ll also learn how Excel applies in a business environment, including more advanced formulas and time-saving shortcuts.
Advanced Excel training
Advanced Excel training is designed to explore some of the most complex tools found in the software, including how it works with other software suites. This level of training is really only needed for those heavily reliant on Excel as part of their role, and those willing to learn a bit of coding.
In an advanced Excel training course, you’ll learn how to fully automate your spreadsheets so you can do things much faster with greater accuracy. You’ll also dig into the coding to understand how and why Excel can do what you need.
Some features you’ll learn include power queries, tables, cell styles, formatting options, and advanced formulas.
Top free Excel training resources
You don’t have to shell out money to learn Excel, as there are many free Excel training resources available. Some of the free options even offer more advanced techniques.
1. Microsoft's Excel for Windows training
Microsoft is the company behind Excel, so it makes sense that it knows the product. Not only that, but the Microsoft Excel for Windows training is well-organized and has a lot of options.
You’ll find videos, tutorials and help guides for various platforms, including Windows, Mac OS, iOS and Android. Do you use an older Excel version? No problem. The Microsoft Excel Training Center has resources for those versions too.
You won’t walk away from these free courses as an Excel expert, but they’ll give you a solid foundation to build upon.
Hubspot is a great resource for a lot of things, and Excel is one of them. Choose from video tutorials, ebooks and guides. You can even get some templates to make your work on Excel even easier.
HubSpot’s Excel Resources page is a great place to start for informal, but practical Excel training, especially if you’re in marketing.
3. Excel Exposure
If you prefer learning in smaller chunks of time, Excel Exposure offers video courses broken down into lessons that are 20 minutes or less.
You can choose from beginner, intermediate or advanced courses. These courses are free, but the site offers a more extensive program for $147.
If you haven’t heard of Chandoo, it’s a great place to learn all about Excel and have a little fun doing it. Chandoo’s motto is, “Be awesome in Excel.” This is a fun, practical place to learn the ins and outs of Excel.
Chandoo’s webpage looks a bit outdated, but it has over 450 blogs and tutorials, and it uses feedback and questions from users to determine its new content. Paid options are available for those who want to dig deeper than the free blogs go.
5. Excel Easy
If you are truly an Excel beginner, Excel Easy might be the right choice for you. It starts simple and breaks things down as you need them. The website is organized into:
- Data Analysis
If you already know your way around Excel and want to do a deep dive into the advanced topics, you’ll want to look elsewhere. However, Excel Easy is a great place for the beginner to gain a foothold on the program.
Top Excel training resources for under $100
Sometimes you get what you pay for. If you’re looking for something a little more substantial, there are many available options. Here are five of the best.
1. LinkedIn Learning
Cost: $29.99 per month or $239.88 per year
If you consider yourself a professional or even a wannabe professional, you’re probably on LinkedIn. However, you may not know about LinkedIn Learning — the professional social media site’s online learning center.
Within Linkedin Learning, you’ll find nearly 200 classes on Excel, including basic intro classes, pivot tables, VBA and more. You can even find tutorials specific to older versions of Excel.
A nice bonus is the ability to get a certificate of completion you can tack onto your LinkedIn page to show the world your Excel knowledge.
Cost: Varies by course but generally under $20
Udemy boasts over 7.25 million users that have learned about Excel on the website. That’s pretty impressive. Add to that over 1000 courses with most under the $20, and you have a winner. Courses vary from very specific tasks to boot-camp-style classes that promise to make you an expert in just a few hours.
Udemy’s Excel courses are extremely affordable and a great option if you’re hung up on one aspect of the program. Chances are there’s a course to handle that specific issue for you.
Cost: Free trial period and $14.95 per month after
Are you the type who has a difficult time focusing for long periods? If so, Intellezy is worth checking out. Intellezy.com breaks all of its courses down into 3-5 minute videos.
The videos are quick, to the point and have an onscreen instructor to keep you engaged. If you want to give it a test drive, Inetellzy offers a free trial.
Cost: 14-day free trial, then $24 per month, $247 per year, $297 per two years or $999 for life
If what you really want is a certification that shows your expertise, eLearnExcel is a great option. It claims that completing all its Excel courses will place you in the top 1% of Excel users. Even Microsoft endorses eLearnExcel’s courses.
There are seven Excel certificates available. If you complete all seven, you’re eligible to earn the Excel Master Diploma.
Cost: Varies per course
Maybe you’re looking for something a bit more formal. Coursera has over 150 Excel courses, and most of them come directly from a college or university. Some examples are Introduction to Data Analysis Using Excel from Rice University and Mastering Data Analysis in Excel from Duke University.
The cost is a bit higher than the others mentioned here, but you get a shareable certificate with a college or university backing it.
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