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Using Corporate Colours in Excel

Updated on August 7, 2010

When formatting text and cell colours in Excel, you may have noticed that you are limited to 56 colours. This can cause a problem when you need to use your companies’ corporate colours in a spreadsheet.

Fortunately, although you cannot add more colours to the palette, you can customize the existing colours. The colours are then stored on that workbook, so when opening a new workbook the default 56 colours are available again.

If the colours you create are to be used often, you should save the workbook as a template.

Find a colours RGB value

First of all, you need to know the RGB value of the colour you want to create. The RGB value is the level of red, green and blue that makes up the colour. Each level ranges from 0-255.

To find the RGB value we will use MS Paint, free software that comes with your copy Microsoft Windows.

  1. Open Paint and then open the picture file that includes the colour you want to create in Excel (your company logo would work well here)
  2. Click the Pick Color button

  1. Click on the colour in the picture you want to use
  2. Click Colors > Edit Colors
  3. Click the Define Custom Colors button to expand the Edit Colors dialogue box

The RGB values for the colour can be seen on the right hand side. Make a note of these numbers as we will need to input these into Excel.

Add a new colour in Excel

  1. Click Tools > Options
  2. Click the Color tab

3. Select the colour in the palette that you want to change

4. Click the Modify button

5. Click the Custom tab

6. Enter the colours RGB value

7. Click Ok

8. Repeat this process to add all the colours you need

9. Click Ok to close Excel options

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