Whenever I train a client on their new website, I inadvertently use the keyboard to copy, paste or find something on the screen, and thereby include them in one of computerdom’s most productivity enhancing tools: keyboard shortcuts.

My favorite (CTRL-F) is supported by many programs, including web browsers, document editors and spreadsheet programs. CTRL-F opens up a search/find box in the program, allowing you to find occurrences of a word. This is especially helpful when working with long documents or (in my case) source code for websites.

Keyboard shortcuts save users so much time because they aren’t forced to move a hand away from the keyboard and on to the mouse, find where the mouse pointer is, move the mouse pointer, click on the necessary area, move their hand back to the keyboard, and then repeat. By not needing to use the mouse to move and hover and click on a button or another field, you will save so much time.

Kyle’s Keyboard Shortcut Honorable Mentions (for Windows)
Shortcut Action
CTRL-C Copies selection to clipboard
CTRL-V Pastes selection from clipboard
TAB Advances cursor to the next field (like an online form)
ALT-TAB Switches between programs
CTRL-TAB Switches between views in a program (i.e. between tabs in web browser, between sheets in Excel workbook)
CTRL-SHIFT-TAB Same as CTRL-TAB, but in reverse order
Windows Button-M Minimizes all windows and displays the desktop
CTRL-X Cuts the selection away and places on the clipboard
CTRL-W Closes the current window
CTRL-N Opens a new document or window in the current program
CTRL-T Opens a new tab in web browsers

You can find many more at the Microsoft Support article for keyboard shortcuts, as well as searching Google for “keyboard shortcuts” + the name of your favorite program.

What is your favorite keyboard shortcut?