I have any conditional formatting rules for my Google Spreadsheet documents. These rules span and overlap many cells. Most of these rules use custom formulas, so they aren't simple like the "Text is exactly" or "Less than or equal to" rules.

Sometimes when I am trying to modify or change a rule, I become quite confused as to what a rule is referring to. I need to look at the formula (which is sometimes quite long) in order to decipher what I was trying to do with that particular rule.

It would be much easier to be able to name these rules to better manage them. This is actually already possible for range protection rules, as you can see in the photo below (name CustomerYTD):

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So, is there any way to do this with conditional formatting rules?

2 Answers 2


One possible way to do this, although not ideal, is to add a sort of comment into the formula you are trying to use. Let's say the condition you are testing for is

=IF($A1 = "Incomplete", TRUE)

You can add a "comment" to a Google Sheets formula using the syntax ... + T(N("Your comment here")) + .... So your above formula could look like this:

=T(N("Task is incomplete")) + IF($A1 = "Incomplete", TRUE)

In this way, all you need to do is to click on the formula to look at your comment or "name" for the formula.


not possible on a scale you imagine it, however, you can have conditional formatting indirectly...

  • type abc in A1
  • paste this in B1: =IF(A1="abc"; "TRUE")
  • and then create conditional formatting for cell C1 where the Custom formula is =B1
  • if you want/need you can create a sheet where you will have all conditional formatting custom formulas and you will just refer to them. you can even use a Named Range

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