It's a fundamental feature that I need in my financial work but I can't seem to get this working in Google Sheets, or it doesn't support it.

I've also looked into Zoho Sheet, but they also don't support this.

Can it be done in Google Sheets, or should I look to another web app?

  • 1
    Do you have a screenshot of an app that shows indention?
    – kzh
    Jun 28, 2011 at 15:02
  • Gnumeric does this: Gnumeric screenshot
    – Belisama
    May 24, 2012 at 0:23

5 Answers 5


You can type either Alt+0160 or Alt+255 to insert non-breaking spaces to create indentation.


You can indent values in cells using EditGrid which free.

It provides with a whole range of Excel like functionality.

Cut-and-paste, sorting, charts, auto-fill, cell border, number formatting, cell formatting, import, export, print, find, undo, redo, freeze pane, text overflow, auto-fit row/column size, word warp, cell comments, 500+ functions ... You name it, EditGrid has it.

EditGrid can import/export your spreadsheets from/to many popular spreadsheet file formats, including Microsoft Excel (.xls), OpenDocument (.ods), OpenOffice.org (.sxc), CSV (.csv), and many others.

You can try out an online demo of EditGrid here


You can use a formula to create an indentation.




The white space (CHAR(160)) is repeated 3 times and combined with the text test via the CONCAT formula.


enter image description here


Use this custom function in a Google script attached to the spreadsheet:

function indent(_txt, _spaces) {
  var txt = (!_txt) ? "Test text" : _txt;
  var spaces = (!_spaces) ? 2 : _spaces;
  var space = " ";
  var f = '';
  for (var i=0; i<spaces; i++) {
    f += space;
  f += txt;
  return f;

IMPORTANT: The space that you enter in the var space = " " line should be a SHIFT-ALT/OPTION-SPACE from Alex and Hannah above.

Use the function in the spreadsheet like this: =indent("Indent me", 2)


On Google Doc Spreadsheets, you can do this by holding down Shift + Alt (Option) + Space.

  • 1
    Couldn't get this to work. Should one be in "edit the cell" mode or "move around the screen" mode?
    – Belisama
    May 24, 2012 at 0:25
  • Could not get this to work either. Oct 21, 2012 at 22:12
  • Could not get this to work either. Apr 14, 2014 at 17:49

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