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How to separate Contact's first and last name in Excel and Google Sheets

Getting your data in the right format to be able to import into RealtimeCRM need not be a hassle, there are simple tips and tricks that can make the whole process simpler and faster. For example, often times you’ll have your Contact’s full name in a single column in a spreadsheet but in RealtimeCRM the correct format is to split them into Forename and Surname, going through each row in turn would be ill advised especially if you have hundreds of Contacts.

So today we’ll show you an easy way to get your contact names in the right format that doesn’t require a lot of time or complex formulas, anyone can do it.

How to separate Contact names in Excel

In this example we have a list of five contacts. We’re going to split the forename and surname apart and transfer the surname into the column to the right called ‘Surname’. When setting up your spreadsheet ensure that next to the column with the full list of names you have an empty column to the right of it as in this case.

excel contact list

  • First select all of the Contacts in the column titled ‘Name’ and then click ‘Data’ on the ribbon above the worksheet
  • Under the Data ribbon click on ‘Text to columns’
  • A new dialog box should now appear. Select ‘Delimited’ and then click ‘Next’
  • Check ‘Space’ as the space between the forename and surname is what we will use to separate them and uncheck ‘Tab’ then click ‘Next’
  • Make sure the data displays correctly in the data preview window and then click ‘Finish’
  • The Contact names should now be split apart in the two columns, in this example we will rename the column ‘Name’ to ‘Forename’

Split contact name in excel

How to separate Contact names in Google Sheets

We’re going to use the same list of Contacts as we did in the Excel example, the steps are slightly different but no more complex.

  • First select all of the Contacts in the column titled ‘Name’ and then click ‘Data’
  • In the drop down menu that appears select ‘Split text into columns’
  • The Separator option will appear, this allows you to set what condition to use to separate out the data. In our case the Forename and Surname are separated by a space in the column ‘Name’. In your case it may be different for example your list of Contact Surnames and Forenames may be separated by commas and so you would select the comma option
  • Your data should now be appropriately separated. In this example we will then simply rename the ‘Name’ column to forename

Split contact name in Google Sheets

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