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Numbering Tables in MS Word

MS Word: Stop Numbering Table Rows Manually, Word Can Do That for You

It’s not that uncommon… you’ve got a table in MS Word where you need the rows numbered, so you find yourself manually keying them in.

…1 – down arrow – 2 – down arrow – 3 – down arrow – 4  – down arrow…

Bored yet?

I know I am, which only adds to my frustration at doing something so trivial. You catch yourself thinking that this is ridiculous (especially with a really large table) and you just can’t believe that there isn’t a way to get Word to do this for you.

Let’s face it, you can’t begin numbering anything without Word trying to automatically format it into a numbered list… so why should this be any different?

Well, it’s not and I can happily report that this is one of those cases where your belief is true, there is a way to get Word to number your rows for you.

Amazingly enough, you accomplish this task the same way you would number any list of information with the Bullets and Numbering feature found on the Home tab of the Ribbon.


To use these features, simply select the row/column/block of cells to which numbers or bullets should be applied.

It can be part of a column/row, or all of it, whatever you need to work with. You can even select a box of cells and Word will number them from left to right on each row and then continue the numbering in the next row of selected cells.

At any rate, once you’ve selected the cells, it’s just a matter of clicking the numbering button in the Paragraph group on the Home tab of the Ribbon.

Don’t forget that you can click the down arrow for a specific function and choose the type of numbering or bullets used:



Cells numbered, lettered, bulleted… whatever you choose, without the repetitious work involved with doing it by hand!

~ April