Excel pasting into one cell- get it to paste into a table

A strange problem that you could be encountering is where Excel is pasting into one cell. So you copy something that looks like a table into Excel and instead of it looking like a table, it all goes into one cell, and even worse, one row and you need to spend hours ‘fixing’ it again.

YouTube Trick to stop Excel pasting into one cell

Copy YouTube time chapters into Excel not working

As an example, if you have a YouTube channel and set up time chapters in the description you may find that when you try and copy/ paste then into Excel it puts everything into one row and one cell.

So below what we want to paste into Excel and note the red line which shows the time stamp versus the description. I want it to appear in Excel with the time in a separate column from the description.

Excel pasting into one cell

However, when it is pasted into Excel directly, it does this. The entire table is in cell A3 below, in a single row.

Excel pasting into one cell

Cleaning this up will be very manual but there is a trick you can try.

Notepad as in-between step to improve the Excel paste

For some reason, the simple Notepad app is extremely effective as a way to get Excel to see what you see. In the above example, if you copy paste from the YouTube description to Notepad it looks like you would expect it to

Excel pasting into one cell

But what is amazing is if you now simply copy and paste this into Excel it now puts it into individual rows and you can now easily split the columns using one of Excel’s other features.

Excel pasting into one cell