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Basic Google Sheets Functions: What are They and How to Use Them

Aug 04, 2022

Functions are an essential aspect of any spreadsheet app, and this is no different for Google Sheets. However, if you are just starting out on Google Sheets, functions can seem extremely overwhelming.

This article will take you through the basic Google Sheets functions you can use to improve your skills and enhance your worksheets.

Add Numbers: SUM

First off, let's start with the most basic function in Google Sheets, which is adding numbers using the SUM function. This function allows you to add numbers in a cell range, add multiple numbers, or a mixture of the two.

The syntax for this function is SUM(value1, value2,,,). Value one is required, but value two is optional.

Average Numbers: AVERAGE

Perhaps you want to look at the average numbers in a range of cells. Don't worry; you can use the AVERAGE function for that.

The syntax for the Google Sheets function AVERAGE is the same as it is in Microsoft Excel.: AVERAGE(value1, value2,...).

Count Cells With Numbers: COUNT

If you have ever been asked to count cells in a worksheet, you will know how frustrating it is to could every single cell or cell ranges. Luckily, you can use the same function as in Excel to make this quick and easy. Here is the syntax for the COUNT function.

COUNT(value1, value2,...).

Remove Non-Printable Characters: CLEAN

If you import data via a separate location into your Google Sheet, sometimes the data can include non-printable characters, such as returns of backspaces. The CLEAN function helps rid your spreadsheet of visible and invisible characters. Here is the syntax:

CLEAN(text).

Remove White Space: TRIM

Another useful function for cleaning up your Google sheet is the TRIM function. Similar to Microsoft Excel, this function gets rid of white spaces within a cell. Here's the syntax:

TRIM(text).

Combine Text or Values: CONCATENATE and CONCAT

There are two functions that you can use to combine values, text, or strings via the CONCAT and CONCATENATE functions.

There is a significance between these two functions, though, as CONCATENATE provides more flexibility. For example, you can merge words and add spaces in between them. Here is the syntax:

CONCATENATE(string1, string2,...) and CONCAT(value1, value2)

Insert an Image in a Cell: IMAGE

There is a basic feature within Google Sheets for inserting an image into a cell, but it does not give you as many options to resize it as you get with the IMAGE function. Here is the syntax:

IMAGE(URL, mode, height, width).

Google Sheets Spreadsheet Functions: Summary and Key Takeaways

Now you have the top basic functions that you can use in Google Sheets! Once you have mastered these functions, you can look at integrating other functions, such as the IF function.

Be sure to check out other blogs on our website for more useful advice on Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel.

Frequently Asked Questions about Google Sheets Formulas

What are the Basic Functions in Google Sheets

  • Add Numbers: SUM

  • Average Numbers: AVERAGE

  • Count Cells With Numbers: COUNT

  • Enter the Current Date and Time: NOW and TODAY

  • Remove Non-Printable Characters: CLEAN

  • Remove White Space: TRIM

  • Combine Text or Values: CONCATENATE and CONCAT

  • Insert an Image in a Cell: IMAGE

  • Validate an Email Address or Link: ISEMAIL and ISURL

Is the Google Sheets Spreadsheet App Free to Download?

You can download the Google Sheets app for free from the Android or Apple store.

Are Google Spreadsheets Easy to Use?

Google spreadsheet is an excellent alternative to Microsoft Excel. It allows you to manipulate data across multiple cells, input numeric values to study, and link up to your Google Workspace and Google Drive accounts.

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