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How to Create an Online Form Connected to Microsoft Excel Through Microsoft Forms

May 8, 2024

We all know that Google offers an integrated environment where you can create a form and store its results in a spreadsheet file for faster data analysis. Microsoft offers the same thing through Microsoft Forms, accessible in their online OneDrive service. In this tutorial, you will learn how to use Microsoft Forms. Are you ready?

How to create Microsoft Forms in OneDrive

Step 1: Click New, then select Forms for Excel.

New, then Forms for Excel

Type the name of the form in the small textbox that will appear.

Textbox for naming the new form

Step 2: Add questions by clicking Add new. A list of question formats will appear.

Blank testform

Different types of question formats plus section divider

Here are the different question formats available in Microsoft Forms:

Choices: for multiple-choice questions. By default, only one choice can be selected. Enabling “Multiple answers” allows the user to select two or more choices.


Text: Allows short-form and long-form text response. By default, the text allows short-text responses.

Short answer text

Enabling the “Long answer” option widens the space to input the response. 

Long answer text

Rating: Allows you to rate certain items from 1 to 5. By default, the ratings are set as stars.

Rating using stars

You can change it to a set of radio buttons with values from 1 to 5 for better user accessibility.

Rating using numbered radio buttons

Date: A special question format for inputting dates that are readable by Microsoft Excel.


Ranking: For arranging items according to certain criteria.


The arrows appear on the right side of the options that can be clicked while filling up the form.

Ranking, with arrows on the right side of the options

Likert: used to assess the user’s agreement, approval, or the desirability of the given statements or options.


 The options are usually set as follows:

  • Strongly disagree
  • Disagree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Agree
  • Strongly agree

File upload: For submitting files such as documents. You can set both the number of files (up to 10 files) and the file size limit (10 MB, 100 MG, and 1 GB)

File upload

If you include a file upload question to the form, the form cannot be publicly accessed, and can only be accessed by other users from your organization (if the account that you use to construct this form is part of the Microsoft plan that your business uses). 

Net Promoter Score: Used for asking whether you would recommend a certain service to a friend or colleague or not, rating it from 1 to 10, with the 10 qualitatively described as “extremely likely”. This is seen as a standard method of gauging the effectiveness of the service or product that a business offers. 

Net Promoter Score

Finally, you can group the questions together through the Section option, where you can label the sections in your form.

Section header

Step 3: You can use themes to make the form look better. Click Theme in the upper-right corner of Microsoft Forms. 

Upper-right corner, Theme

A list of themes will appear, ranging from those with plain colored background to ones with aesthetic vector art.

Themes available in Office online, with option for adding a new theme.

Step 4: You can also modify the access settings by clicking the three dots on the upper-right of the Microsoft Forms. A list of options will appear. Click Settings

Three dots on upper-right, options including Settings

A list of settings will appear, including access settings and options for responses.

List of access settings, options for responses, and response receipts.

Step 5: You can check your form will appear to respondents by clicking Preview in the upper-right corner of Microsoft Forms. 

Send button on upper-right corner of Microsoft Forms

You can simulate the screen from either a desktop/laptop computer or from a mobile phone by clicking Computer or Mobile on the upper-right corner.

Test form preview

Simply click Back on the upper-left corner if you are done checking the preview. 

Step 6: To distribute the form, click the Send button in the upper-right corner of Microsoft Forms. A sidebar will appear with the title Send and collect responses

Send and collect responses access options

The options are as follows:

  • Anyone can respond: the form is open to anyone with the link, regardless of whether they have a Microsoft OneDrive account or not.
  • Only people in my organization can respond: only the Microsoft OneDrive accounts that are part of your business plan can access the form.
  • Specific people in my organization can respond: only specific users can access the form. A textbox appears where you can add the users’ email accounts.
Textbox for specifying which users can access the form

Afterwards, you have four options of distributing it, in order of appearance of icons from left to right:

Distribution options icons. From left to right: link, email, QR code, and embed.

  • Link: a textbox with a generated link will appear that you can copy and paste to different places.
  • Email: an email app will open that includes the link to the form where you can write your email to be sent to the intended recipients of the form.
  • QR Code: If you plan to include an access to the form through posters and other printed media, the QR code generated can come in handy and can easily be added to the design.
  • Embed: If you want the form embedded in your blog or website, the code will be generated that you can paste to the webpage code.

How to check the results of your form and store it in an Excel spreadsheet

To check the results of your form, simply click the Responses tab. You can access both the summary of the results and the individual results. It also includes the average time to complete of all the users who completed the form. 

To store the results in an Excel file, click Open in Excel.

Responses tab showing the number of responses, the average time to complete, and the active status of the form

A new tab will open, with Excel online loading the spreadsheet.

Excel online showing the stored form entries

At this point you might wonder whether to use Microsoft Forms or Google Forms. The advantage of Microsoft Forms is that you can store the results in the Excel formats, giving you access to hundreds of functions through Excel online or through the installed Excel program in your computer.

Analyzing your data in Excel can sometimes become confusing, and that is where Lido can help. Easily import Excel spreadsheets into Lido and build custom dashboards that intuitively illustrate your data. Get started here today.

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