[Fixed!] Cursor Selecting Wrong Cell in Excel (6 Proven Solutions)

Undoubtedly, Excel is the go-to tool for processing and analyzing data. However, like everything else in this world, it has its downsides too. Have you faced a situation where the cursor selects the wrong cell? Do not despair! Because you’re not alone. Luckily, in the following tutorial, we’ll demonstrate 6 easy fixes for the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. In addition, we’ll also discuss fixes for Excel’s cursor being selected in the wrong place.

Excel Cursor Is Selecting Wrong Cell: 6 Possible Solutions

First and foremost, let’s assume the Quarterly Sales Data for 2021 shown in the B4:F14 cells contains the Location, and the four Quarters Q1, Q2, Q3, and Q4 respectively. Here, we want to fix the issue of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. So, without further delay, let’s glance at the solutions described below with easy and simple illustrations.

excel cursor selecting wrong cell

Here, we have used the Microsoft Excel 365 version; you may use any other version according to your convenience.

Solution 1: Checking Whether the Extend Selection Feature Is Enabled or Not

First of all, let’s address a common cause of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. Simply put, the Extend Selection feature may be turned on, which causes the selection of unwanted cells as shown in the figure below.

Checking Whether the Extend Selection Feature Is Enabled or Not

📌 Steps:

  • To begin with, check the Status Bar to see if Extend Selection is visible >> press the F8 key or the ESC key to turn off Extend Selection >> it disappears from the Status Bar.

Turning off Extend Selection

Finally, this disables the Extend Selection feature, so it disappears from the Status Bar.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by disabling Extend Selection

Solution 2: Adjusting the Zoom Percentage

In truth, another simple fix involves adjusting the zoom of the spreadsheet. Now, there are several ways to do this, so let’s see the process in detail.

📌 Steps:

  • Initially, move to the View tab >> click the Zoom button.

Adjusting the Zoom

  • Next, choose a magnification according to your preference, for instance, a Custom magnification of “110%” was chosen >> hit the OK button.

Applying Custom Zoom

In addition, you can also adjust the zoom using the Zoom Slider in the Status Bar.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by changing zoom

Solution 3: Opening Excel in Safe Mode

Oftentimes, launching Microsoft Excel in safe mode resolves many of the issues, in this case, the Excel cursor selects the wrong cell. Luckily, it’s a simple process, so just follow along.

📌 Steps:

  • First, close the Excel application >> click the Windows button >> hold down the CTRL key and Left click to open Excel.

Opening Excel in Safe Mode

  • Not long after, a message appears asking if you want to open Excel in Safe Mode >> hit the Yes button.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by opening excel in Safe Mode

Solution 4: Disabling All Add-ins

For one thing, Excel Add-ins are a useful feature for data analysis, but sometimes they may cause the problem of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. Hence, another potential fix involves disabling all the Add-ins.

📌 Steps:

  • First of all, navigate to the File tab at the top-left corner.

Disabling All Add-ins

  • Next, click the Options button at the bottom.

Moving to Excel Options

Now, the Excel Options wizard appears.

  • In turn, go to the Add-ins section >> in the Manage field, choose the COM Add-ins option >> click on Go.

Removing COM Add-ins

  • Afterward, uncheck all the Add-ins as shown below and press OK >> Close and reboot Excel.

Hopefully, this fixes the issue of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by disabling add ins

Solution 5: Enabling Direct Editing in Cell

Typically, another common problem that drives people crazy is when you double-click a cell to enter Editing Mode, but the cursor jumps to another cell. For example, in the screenshot below, Double-clicking the C17 cell prompts the cursor to jump to the C9:F9 cell, almost as if the cursor has a mind of its own!
Fortunately, there is a simple workaround, therefore, allow us to demonstrate the process in the steps below.

Enabling Direct Editing in Cell

📌 Steps:

  • To start with, proceed to the File tab.

Selecting File tab

  • Then, jump to the Options section.

  • Later, navigate to the Advanced option >> check Allow editing directly in cells >> press the OK button >> restart Excel.

Eventually, this should troubleshoot the above problem.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by enabling direct cell editing

Solution 6: Changing Page Layout

Last but not least, while sifting through various forums, people suggested changing the page layout to amend the problem of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. Admittedly, no one knows why this is the case, but hey, whatever works!

📌 Steps:

  • Initially, proceed to the View tab >> choose the Normal view.

Changing Page Layout

That said, however, our world is far from perfect! The methods above are all possible ways to resolve the issue of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell, if the problem persists, as the last option, you can contact Microsoft Support. Here, you can find many Excel experts who will provide solutions for your particular issues.

What to Do If Cursor Is in the Wrong Place in Excel

Alternatively, another similar issue is that Excel’s cursor is in the wrong place. So, let’s go through the steps to fix this problem.

📌 Steps:

  • First, go to Excel’s File tab.

What to Do If Excel Cursor Is in the Wrong Place

  • Second, choose Options to open a new window.

Consequently, the Excel Options dialog box pops out.

  • Third, select the Advanced tab >> in the Display section, check the Disable hardware graphics acceleration option >> press OK.

Fixing excel cursor selecting wrong cell by disabling hardware graphics acceleration

If, however, this does not resolve the problem, then you’ll have to update the Office version on your PC to fix this issue.

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To sum up, this article describes 6 quick and easy fixes for the issue of the Excel cursor selecting the wrong cell. Now, we hope you find it useful and will share your thoughts in the comments section.

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Eshrak Kader
Eshrak Kader

Eshrak Kader is a dedicated professional with a BSc. Degree in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. He boasts a rich background in Microsoft Office Suite, and over the past year, he has authored over 120 insightful articles for the ExcelDemy. Currently, Eshrak leads a team of 5 in the ExcelDemy Video project and enjoys problem-solving and making videos on Excel. Eshrak’s passion for continuous learning underscores his commitment to excellence in... Read Full Bio

  1. I have an HP Spectre running on office 365 and its driving me crazy that after a few minutes of working on a spreadsheet the mouse clicking and cells that are chosen is off by 5 or 6 cells.
    I tried these suggested fixes but it did not address my problem.
    What works temporarily is to shut down the working file, closing Excel and re-starting again excel with the same file.
    Is it Office 365?
    Is it my HP Spectre 360?
    Is it Windows 11?
    All of the software is confirmed to be up to date

    • Reply Lutfor Rahman Shimanto
      Lutfor Rahman Shimanto Mar 28, 2024 at 1:23 PM

      Hello Larry

      Thanks for sharing your problem. Being remote makes it difficult to provide an ultimate solution. However, you can try Repairing Office Installation, Checking Graphics Card Drivers, and Checking for Conflicting Add-ins.

      Sometimes, a corrupted Office installation can cause unexpected behavior. To fix this, you can try repairing your Office 365 installation. Outdated or incompatible graphics card drivers could also contribute to display issues. Update your graphics card drivers to the latest version from HP’s website.

      If none of the above solutions work, you might need to contact HP Support for further assistance. Though the exact cause (Office 365, HP Spectre, or Windows 11) remains unclear, hopefully, you can try these ideas to overcome your situation.


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