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For questions about the Google's web application to create and edit spreadsheets on a web browser. Don't use it for the Google Drive Excel files editor.

Overview

One of the applications of the Google Docs editors to create and work on Google's own spreadsheet format. It can be accessed from Google Drive or from http://sheets.google.com.

NOTE: On the official documentation "spreadsheet" is used instead of "workbook" and "sheet" instead of "worksheet". The app's name has changed and was previously Google Spreadsheets.

Within the spreadsheet, all basic functions (see complete list) and more are present to accomplish many goals. Do not expect Sheets to mimic Excel exactly. For user-specific features, Google Apps Script can create custom functions and allows for extra flexibility inside and outside the spreadsheet.

General asking guidance

Before posting a question:

  • Check the Official Documentation and make use of Sheet's inbuilt Help, in particular for the syntax required by functions.
  • Search for related questions & answers tagged .
  • If you get "#ERROR! > Error: Parse error on formula", check that your formula is using the correct argument separator. Some locales use a comma, others a semicolon (set at sheet level).
  • Mention if you are using a version other than English.
  • If your question is about a complex formula that is not working, (1) check that each part works correctly and (2) mention which specific part is not working and (3) in what way/where it fails.
  • Be certain to provide cell references where relevant (eg avoid cropping the Headings [A, B, C etc across the top, 1, 2, 3 etc. down the side] when uploading an image).
  • Where values that are expected to be the same are not, check for surplus spaces (especially trailing ones).

Do's
The tag can be used by itself or in combination with other tags:

( to indicate that you want to convert the spreadsheet to PDF in Google Drive.)

Others tags that may be relevant include:

If the question is about a formula:

  • Include the formula
  • Include a representative sample of the source data, preferably in text format
  • Include exactly what results are required from the source data, and where
  • Include, where appropriate, a link to a demo spreadsheet shared with anyone with the link is able to view but do not rely on the sheet or images to clarify what should be stated in words

Dont's
Without good reason, do not use the tag in combination with the tag, to point to the Google Sheets. This will make both tags contaminated.

Automating tasks / add custom functions and features

We can use macros to record recurring steps as far as the procedure is simple. For complex automation, adding custom functions and features we could use Google Apps Script. Before asking a question that involves macros and scripts, please read Extending Google Sheets.

How to get more specific guidance on asking questions about Google Sheets

Request for help about how to ask a question on Meta Web Applications.

References

history | excerpt history