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How to Enable / Disable Smart Tags in Excel

This tutorial demonstrates how to enable or disable smart tags in Excel and Google Sheets.

 

copy paste smart tag 2

 

What Are Smart Tags?

Smart tags are small icons that appear under cells after some action with data in the spreadsheet. The most common smart tag appears when you copy and paste data, offering different paste options. After you paste data, the following icon appears under the paste range.

 

copy paste smart tag

 

If you click on it, different paste options appear, like paste values, paste formulas, transpose, etc.

 

copy paste smart tag 2

 

Other smart tags available in Excel include AutoFill, Flash Fill, error checker, and Quick Analysis. They are enabled by default. The section below will show how to disable smart tags if you don’t want them to be displayed.

Disable Smart Tags

If you don’t use smart tags or just don’t want them to be displayed, you can disable them in Excel Options. Each of the smart tags mentioned above has its own option for enabling/disabling, so we’ll display them separately.

Paste Options and AutoFill

  1. To disable paste options and autofill smart tags, in the Ribbon, go to File > Options.

 

disable smart tags options

 

  1. In Excel Options, select Advanced, scroll down to the Cut, copy, and paste section, uncheck Show Paste Options button when content is pasted, and click OK.

 

disable paste options autofill

 

As a result, when you copy and paste data, the paste options icon is no longer displayed. (In this example, the Quick Analysis icon is shown, because it’s still enabled.)

 

disable paste options autofill 2

 

If you want to enable the smart tag again, follow the path above and check the option. This is the case for all other smart tags.

Flash Fill

The Flash Fill functionality recognizes patterns as you type, so you can automatically populate fields in the range with offered suggestions.

 

flash fill smart tag

 

To disable Flash Fill, in the Excel Options window:

  1. Select Advanced and scroll to the Editing options.
  2. Uncheck Automatically Flash Fill.
  3. Then click OK.

 

disable flash fill

 

As a result, the Flash Fill smart tag won’t be displayed as you type.

Quick Analysis

The Quick Analysis tag gives you possible options for data analysis once you select a data range (e.g., formatting, charts, tables, etc.).

 

quick analysis smart tag

 

To disable the Quick Analysis smart tag, in the Excel Options window:

  1. Select General, in User Interface options.
  2. Uncheck Show Quick Analysis options on selection.
  3. Then click OK.

 

disable quick analysis

 

Now the quick analysis smart tag isn’t displayed when you select a range of values.

Error Checking

When you type a formula that has an error, the error checking smart tag will appear (the green arrow in the top left corner of the cell with the yellow icon on the left) letting you know that the cell has an error.

 

error checking smart tag

 

To disable the error checking smart tag, in the Excel Options window:

  1. Select Formulas and scroll down to the Error Checking section
  2. Uncheck Enable background error checking.
  3. Then click OK.

 

disable error checking