Maintaining Formatting when Refreshing PivotTables

PivotTables provide a great way to analyze large amounts of data and pull out the summarizations that you need. Once you have the PivotTable displaying the values you need, you can then format the table to make the data presentable-for a while. You see, when you update the data on which the PivotTable is based, and then refresh the PivotTable, all your formatting work may go away.

The way around this is to follow these steps:

  1. Make sure that your PivotTable displays the values you want.
  2. Format the PivotTable in whatever way desired.
  3. Select a cell in the PivotTable.
  4. Display the Options tab of the ribbon.
  5. Click the Options tool in the PivotTable group. Excel displays the PivotTable Options dialog box.
  6. Make sure the Layout & Format tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  7. Figure 1. The Layout & Format tab of the PivotTable Options dialog box.

  8. Make sure the Preserve Cell Formatting On Update check box is selected.
  9. Click OK.

Now, when you refresh the PivotTable, your previously applied formatting should remain on rows and columns previously in the PivotTable. If the refresh results in new rows being added to the PivotTable, then you will still need to format those, unless you are using an AutoFormat.