How to Use a Cell in Excel As a Checkbox

By Ryan Menezes

Updated September 28, 2017

Check boxes change cell data between two values
i photo investment checkbox image by Aleksandar Radovanovic from

On a Word document, check boxes add to the page's design, visually representing an item's status. In Excel, they do more. Linking one to a cell lets you set the cell's value by checking or unchecking it. Spreadsheet formulas then use this changed data, determining other cells' contents. Excel hides this function by default. Enable it through the program's Developer tab.

In Excel, click "File" from the menu bar.

Click "Options" from the left pane. The "Excel Options" window will open.

Click "Customize Ribbon" from the left pane.

Check the box next to "Developer" in the "Customize the Ribbon" section on the screen's right side. Click "OK."

Switch to the "Developer" ribbon.

Click "Insert" from the "Controls" tab.

Click the check box icon under "form controls." You cursor will turn into cross-hairs.

Click on the cell you want to change into a check box. A box will appear there.

Drag the check box to align it with the cell. Change the box's label, which is "Check Box 1" by default.

With the check box still selected, click "Properties" from the Developer ribbon's "Controls" tab. The "Format Control" window will open, with the "Control" tab selected.

Enter the cell address in the "Cell link" box. Click "OK."