# Excel formula for Beginners – How to Sort by one column in Excel

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In this end-to-end excel example, you will learn – Excel formula for Beginners – How to Sort by one column in Excel.

### Generic formula

`=SORT(data,index,order)`

### Explanation

To sort by one column, you can use the SORT function or SORTBY function. In the example shown, data is sorted by the Group column. The formula in F5 is:

`=SORT(B5:D14,3)`

Notice data is sorted in ascending order (A-Z) by default.

### How this formula works

The SORT function requires very little configuration. In the example shown, we want to sort data in B5:D14 by the third column, Group. For array, we provide entire range, B5:D14. For sort_index, we provide 3:

`=SORT(B5:D14,3)`

With this formula in F5, the SORT function outputs the sorted array in F5:H14.

### Ascending vs. Descending

Data is sorted in ascending order (A-Z) by default. This behavior is controlled by an optional third argument, sort_order. The default value for sort_order is 1, so both formulas below return the same result as shown in the example above:

```=SORT(B5:D14,3)
=SORT(B5:D14,3,1)```

To sort in descending (Z-A) order, set sort_order to -1. In the example below, we are sorting data in descending order by score, which is the second column:

`=SORT(B5:D14,2,-1)`