In this article, you will learn how to write narratives by combining texts and formulas. Understanding this is beneficial when you need to write full sentences referencing the cells with values that should be dynamically updated.
The basic rules are as follows:
Imagine you are a finance manager and want to write some narratives for a financial report as a combination of your context inputs some numbers in a summary financial worksheet. Check a few simple examples below.
(i) Examples (Text)
One thing we can highlight in this example is a space, “ “. You can treat it as an independent chunk in the second example (&” “&) or put it next to another word to the right and/or left in the third example. Also, you can combine more than two values.
(ii) Examples (Number)
You can combine numbers without surrounding them with quotation marks. You should be aware that if a number is combined with a text, the combined value is no longer considered a number by Google Sheets, which means you can’t use the combined value for any calculations. The second example, “12 COW” is not counted as a number in Google Sheets.
(iii) Examples (Date)
Dates also need to be enclosed with quotations, similarly to texts.
Next, go through two examples showing combined values by cell references.
(iv) Examples with cell references
When you combine cells, you don’t need to enclose them with quotation marks. Unless a cell value contains a space at its beginning and/or end, you need to combine a space if necessary.
Finally, see some examples of narratives in the screenshot below.
The examples are slightly different, but all of them use cell references for item names in Column B, such as “Revenue”, and their amounts in Column C, such as “5,000”. We typed in other parts of the formulas manually. One of the strengths of cell reference is, that when a cell referred is updated, a narrative containing the cell will show the updated value. Here is an example of a template that allows you to have the latest financial and thus updated narratives in Google Sheets: Turn Reports Into Simple Narratives Template - Google Sheets & Excel
Check this article to learn how to merge cells in Google Sheets.
Check this article: How to Use the CONCATENATE function in Google Sheets to learn how to use the “CONCATENATE” function in Google Sheets.
If you are interested in an automatically updated financial template that allows you to have up-to-date financial narratives, LiveFlow may be beneficial for you. LiveFlow provides templates such as Business KPI Dashboard, which contains critical financial and operational charts, and Live Client Reporting Template for Excel & Google Sheets.
Check the following articles if you are interested in formatting text in cells.
How to Make Text Bold, Italic, and Strikethrough in Google Sheets
How to Align Text in Google Sheets
How to Wrap Text in Cell in Google Sheets
How to Rotate Text in Google Sheets
How to Change Default Font in Google Sheets
How to Indent Texts in Google Sheets: Explained
How to Capitalize All Letters in Google Sheets
How to Make All Letters Lowercase in Google Sheets
How to Capitalize the First Letter in Google Sheets
TEXT Function in Google Sheets: Explained
Do you want to learn how to combine or split text in Google Sheets?
CONCAT Function in Google Sheets: Explained
How to Use the CONCATENATE function in Google Sheets
How to Split Texts into Columns in Google Sheets
How to Use SPLIT Function in Google Sheets
CHAR Function in Google Sheets: Explained
Do you want to know where a specify character or word is in a text string?
LEFT Function in Google Sheets: Explained
How to Use RIGHT Function in Google Sheets
SEARCH Function in Google Sheets: Explained
FIND Function in Google Sheets: Explained
Do you need to replace a part of text with another characters or words?
How to Use REPLACE Function in Google Sheets
SUBSTITUTE Function in Google Sheets: Explained
Do you like to show a formulae in a cell?
How to Use FORMULATEXT Function in Google Sheets
This function is useful when you need to count the number of characters in a text string.
LEN Function in Google Sheets: Explained
Why don’t you double-check the spelling of your texts or cleaning up extra spaces before printing or closing Google Sheets?
How to Spell-check in Google Sheets
How to Trim Whitespaces in Google Sheets
You can repeat the same text string with this formula.
REPT Function in Google Sheets: Explained
You can learn about other Google Sheets formulas and tips that are not mentioned here on this page: LiveFlow‘s How to Guides
Are you learning this tip to visualize financial data, build a financial model, or conduct financial analysis? In that case, LiveFlow may help you automate manual workflows and update numbers in real-time. You can access various financial templates on our website, from the simple Income Statement to Multi-Currency Consolidated Financial Statement. You can also customize these templates as you want without breaking the automated data inflow.
To learn more about LiveFlow, book a demo.
Learn how to do this step-by-step in the video below 👇