Let’s say we need to change the format of the cell A2 in the below table. Currently the cell contains a random date 7/18/2020.
To apply number format in cell A2 press the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+! .
Or as an alternative process you can click on the cell A2 and in the Home tab select the format you need from the dropdown list in Number Group.
As you can see the date has been converted to a number as 44030. Excel has the internal rule to convert a certain data to it’s corresponding value in different format. Let’s not get into the detail to find the mechanism behind how the date 7/18/2020 converted to the number 44030. In place of the date 7/18/2020, there can be anything which could be converted to the respective number once the number format is applied to the cell.
Now if you need to choose other number formats then you can right click on the cell A2 and click ‘Format Cells’ to open ‘Format Cells’ pane. Alternatively you can also use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+1 to open ‘Format Cells’ pane.