How to Do Formulas in Google Sheets: A Step-by-Step Guide

Hey there! Are you tired of manually calculating data and dealing with endless rows and columns in spreadsheets? Worry no more because I have amazing news for you! In this article, I'll be sharing a step-by-step guide on how to do formulas in Google Sheets to make your life easier. Trust me, you'll thank me later for teaching you this. Before we dive in, let me give you a brief introduction to what formulas are. Formulas are equations used to perform calculations in Google Sheets. They can add, subtract, multiply, divide, and perform complex calculations with ease. Once you understand how to use them, you can save time and avoid mathematical errors. Now let's get into the good stuff!

Step 1: How to Add Formulas in Google Sheets

The first step is to select an empty cell where you want to insert a formula. Once you have selected the cell, start typing the equal (=) sign. The equal sign tells Google Sheets that a formula is about to follow. Next, type the formula you want to use. For example, let's say you want to add up two numbers, 5 and 10. All you have to do is type this into the cell "=5+10". Once you hit enter, Google Sheets will calculate the sum for you and show the result in the cell.

Step 2: Use Cell References in Formulas in Google Sheets

One of the fantastic features of Google Sheets is the ability to use cell references in formulas. A cell reference is a way to refer to a specific cell in a sheet. Instead of entering the actual data, you can refer to the cell containing the data, making it easier to update the formula if needed. To use a cell reference in a formula, simply type the cell's coordinates in the formula. For example, if you want to add up the values in cells A1 and B1, you can type "=A1+B1" into another cell. The formula will add up the values in those cells and show the result in the cell containing the formula.

Step 3: Common Formulas in Google Sheets

Google Sheets has a wide variety of formulas available to use, but here are some of the most common ones that you might find useful:


Adds up a series of numbers. The syntax for the formula is "=SUM(range)". For example, "=SUM(A1:A5)" will add up the values in cells A1 through A5.


Calculates the average of a series of numbers. The syntax for the formula is "=AVERAGE(range)". For example, "=AVERAGE(A1:A5)" will calculate the average of the values in cells A1 through A5.

MIN and MAX:

MIN and MAX formulas return the smallest and largest numbers in a range, respectively. The syntax for the formulas is "=MIN(range)" and "=MAX(range)". For example, "=MIN(A1:A5)" will show the smallest number in the range A1 through A5, and "=MAX(A1:A5)" will show the largest number in the range.

Step 4: Advanced Formulas in Google Sheets

Now that we've covered the basics let's move on to some advanced formulas that you can use in Google Sheets.


The IF formula is used to test whether a certain condition is true or false. The syntax for the formula is "=IF(condition, value_if_true, value_if_false)". For example, "=IF(A1>10, "Yes", "No")" will return "Yes" if the value in cell A1 is greater than 10, or "No" if it is less than or equal to 10.


The COUNTIF formula is used to count how many cells in a range meet a certain condition. The syntax for the formula is "=COUNTIF(range, condition)". For example, "=COUNTIF(A1:A5, ">50")" will count how many cells in the range A1 through A5 are greater than 50.


INDEX and MATCH formulas work together to return a value from a table based on specific criteria. The INDEX formula returns a value from a specified row and column in a table, while the MATCH formula finds the row or column that matches a specific criteria. For example, "=INDEX(A1:C5, MATCH("John", A1:A5, 0), 3)" will find the row containing "John" in column A and return the value in the third column of that row, which may be in cell C2.


And that's it! Now you know how to use formulas in Google Sheets. Using formulas can save you time, avoid mathematical errors, and let you do complex calculations with ease. Remember to start with the equal sign, use cell references, and explore the available formulas in Google Sheets to get the most out of this fantastic tool. Happy calculating!
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