Copy Just the Text from a Web Page

I few weeks ago, I discovered something I didn’t know. There is an easy way to copy just the text from a web page.

Every now and then, I have to copy something from a web page, but I want to paste just the text – not the stupid formatting.

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Let’s say I want to copy some currency data from Yahoo Finance.

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A simple copy and paste gives me this result. Note how Excel pasted the hyperlinks for each currency name.  This is because, by default, all Office applications try to keep as much of the source formatting as possible.

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I rarely need the silly formatting, so I usually just right click, and use the Paste Special dialog box to get just Text.

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Well apparently, the unassuming icon seen on the right-click menu (the Match Destination Formatting command) lets you do the same thing.

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Now, I could be the last Excel nerd in the world to know about Match Destination Formatting, but I doubt it.  Missing nifty functionality like this is a direct result of not including labels with nebulous icons.

The only way I found this was that I accidently left my mouse hovering over it for a second while I was yelling at my kids.

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By the way, both Word and PowerPoint have this same type of icon.

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Have a great weekend.

4 thoughts on “Copy Just the Text from a Web Page

  1. Dan McMillen

    Nice tip, didn’t know about this option.

    You could use AutoHotKey to run this keystroke combination with Win-V (or some other hotkey) if you use it enough to warrant setting up the macro:

    !HVS{DOWN 2}{Enter}

    the “!” is an Alt keypress.

    I have Win-V setup to do a “value only” paste while I’m in Excel and everywhere else it strips everything other than text from the clipboard and pastes that.

    I might add one on Ctrl-Win-V to do this.

  2. Inge Randen

    Also remember the shortcut keys for this (after CTRL+C) :

    CTRL+V – then – CTRL – then – M = Match Destination
    or
    CTRL+V – then – CTRL – then – T = Text

  3. Daniel

    Of course, the easiest way is to copy and paste to notepad and then to the place where you want to paste it as notepad removes all formatting

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