To follow along, the Excel file I am using will be accessible here.

Hello everyone, my name is Bailey McDonald, and this is going to be the start of a Power BI blogging series that I am doing for the purpose of instructing on the more entry-level topics to some intermediate-advanced topics. For this first entry I’m going to start off pretty basic and I will lead us through how to import Excel data into Power BI. There are multiple ways that you could do this, so I am going to do an overview of each method for those who are just breaking into Power BI. For starters, we are going to use the route that Power BI makes most obvious from opening the desktop app.

Example 1. When you open Power BI Desktop this will be the first object that appears to you as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1

               After this pop-up appears, you will need to click on the “Get Data” button. After you click on that a new pop-up will appear that shows all of the different data types that you can import into Power BI. For the purposes of this blog, we will ignore the other ones and just click on “Excel Workbook” which will be the first option as shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2

               After selecting the “Excel Workbook” option you will then need to go down to the bottom of the pop-up and click on the “Connect” button as shown in Figure 2. By clicking the “Connect” button, this results in the File Explorer popping up allowing you to search for the Excel file (.xlsx) that you would like to import.

               Once you have selected which Excel file you want to use, the navigator pop-up will appear and it will show all of the tables and worksheets that are in your Excel file. To finalize getting your data ready you need to select all of the tables and/or worksheets that you want to load into the data model and then click the “Transform” button (as seen in Figure 3) at the bottom of the navigator pop-up this will bring up the Power Query Editor which I will be reviewing in one of my upcoming blogs.

Figure 3

That wraps up the first method of importing your Excel file into Power BI and now we will move on to the second and third method.

Example 2/3. In these next two methods, we use the other “Get Data” buttons that you will find, each of which will pull up a similar menu. In the case of example 2, the “Get Data” button appears in the Home Ribbon. To get the aforementioned menu, you have to click on the drop-down button. To finish, follow the same steps as presented in figures 2 and 3.

Figure 4

               The second way is a little more hidden than any of the alternatives but to start you would click on the “File” button in the navigation ribbon at the top of the screen. After doing so, you will need to click on the “Get Data” button and then click on “Excel workbook” (depicted in Figure 5).

Figure 5

For the final steps of loading your Excel workbook into Power BI you will follow the steps as shown in figures 2 and 3.

Example 4/5. These last two methods are the probably the quickest ways to import your data from Excel to Power BI. This is because by clicking on the specified button, it brings you directly into the File Explorer looking for Excel (.xlsx) Files.

For Example 4, you would click on the “Import data from Excel” button which is inside of the report box. Lastly, in Example 5, you would click on the “Excel workbook” button which is inside the Home Pane at the top of your screen. Both methods are shown in Figure 6 below (Example 4 is associated with label 1, Example 5 is associated with label 2).

Figure 6

Bailey McDonald
Data Engineer, Patriot Consulting
Email: | Blogs: Patriot Consulting Blogs
LinkedIn: Personal: BaileyMcDonald | Company: Patriot Consulting

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