Removing Dashes from ISBN Numbers in Excel

ISBN numbers are unique identifiers for books, and they are often used by libraries, bookstores, and publishers to keep track of their inventory. However, ISBN numbers can be difficult to work with in Excel because they often contain dashes, which can cause problems when you try to sort or filter your data. In this article, we will show you how to remove dashes from ISBN numbers in Excel, so you can work with your data more easily.

Step 1: Import Your Data into Excel

The first step is to import your data into Excel. You can do this by opening a new workbook and selecting “File” > “Open” from the menu. Then, navigate to the file that contains your ISBN numbers and select it. Excel will import the data into a new worksheet.

Step 2: Create a New Column

Next, you need to create a new column where you will remove the dashes from your ISBN numbers. To do this, right-click on the column header where you want to add the new column and select “Insert.”

Step 3: Use the SUBSTITUTE Function

Now, you can use the SUBSTITUTE function to remove the dashes from your ISBN numbers. The SUBSTITUTE function allows you to replace one text string with another text string. In this case, you want to replace the dash (“-“) with nothing (“”).

To use the SUBSTITUTE function, enter the following formula in the first cell of your new column:


Where “A2” is the cell that contains your ISBN number with dashes. You can then copy this formula down to the rest of the cells in your new column.

Step 4: Format Your Data

Finally, you need to format your data as text to ensure that Excel does not convert your ISBN numbers to scientific notation or round them off. To do this, select the cells in your new column, right-click, and select “Format Cells.” Then, select “Text” from the list of options and click “OK.”


Removing dashes from ISBN numbers in Excel is a simple process that can save you a lot of time and frustration. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can easily remove dashes from your ISBN numbers and work with your data more effectively.


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