I have a column of numbers, where I've changed the background color of some of the cells to blue. All of the other cells in the column have the regular white background.

Is it possible to create a formula to add up only the colored cells in the column?

  • 2
    Can't you use conditional formatting to change the colour according to some text in the cell, which the formula also counts?
    – Gelatin
    Jul 1, 2010 at 17:19

1 Answer 1


It seems what you really want to do is 1) mark certain rows and then 2) sum the marked rows. On any spreadsheet, it makes the most sense to create another column and put a number or character in there. Then use the SUMIF formula to calculate the result.

Imagine having a 4 row by 2 column spreadsheet. You want to sum the values in column A if there's a Y in column B.

A      | B
40     | Y
20     | 
30     | Y
10     | 

To calculate the sum, the formula is as follows:

=SUMIF(B1:B4, "Y", A1:A4)
  • That's a great idea and should work wonderfully in my case. Thanks!
    – bporter
    Jul 1, 2010 at 18:09
  • 1
    This only works if you have two columns - "A" and "B". If you have two points of data and one of them is the value, the second being the color of the cell, then this solution will not work. Sometimes it is not possible to have two columns.
    – user37950
    Apr 8, 2013 at 14:43

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