Microsoft Excel has enhanced its Web Connector tool, which enables users to import data directly from a website into a worksheet. According to Microsoft's latest blog post, the new Web connector, besides being automated to update in Excel with changes on the website, now boasts two additional features aimed at making the importing of web data to Excel simpler and more efficient.
Innovative Suggested Tables Feature
The first new feature, ‘Suggested tables', allows Excel to automatically propose and detect tables for users. This functionality serves to considerably lessen work complexity. Utilizing this feature works as follows:
An existing or new project in Excel is opened and ‘Data Tab' is clicked. The URL for the desired data extraction is entered, after which ‘OK' is clicked. With the ‘Suggested tables', Excel will then automatically propose a list of tables, thereby simplifying the data extraction.
Introducing ‘Add a Table Using Examples' Addition
The second novel feature, ‘Add a table using examples', allows users to proactively provide examples of their preferred tables. Utilizing AI, Excel generates similar tables which users can select from. The operation of this feature is simple:
Data is extracted from the Web pages a user is visiting for reference. An interactive page is then provided to place this data. By clicking ‘OK', Excel proceeds to produce similar tables of choice for the data import.
This new Web Connector, launching along with the Copilot tool in November, promises to significantly improve workflow and data handling. Both tools are expected to allow users to create tables with much greater speed. These recent features are a part of wider updates to Excel that also includes the Business Assist – Forecast add-in launched last week.
Business Assist – Forecast is an add-on that uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to help businesses make better forecasts. The Microsoft 365 Insider blog recently announced this add-on. The add-on helps users save time on forecasting and analyzing past data and patterns. It also offers a complete review function for future support volume based on previous data. In addition, Microsoft highlights how the add-on can improve customer service by enabling accurate estimation of service-call volumes.