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Google Sheets Formulas

How to Use SUM Function in Google Sheets

In this article, we will explain how to add numbers in some cells or in a selected range or array with a formula called “SUM.”

What is the SUM function in Google Sheets?

The SUM function in Google Sheets calculates the sum of a range of cells. It takes a cell, range, or array as arguments and returns the sum of the values in the specified area. The SUM function is beneficial whenever you need to calculate the total of a range of cells quickly. It is handy when you have a large data set and want a quick data summary. For example, if you have a spreadsheet containing a list of expenses and want to know the total amount spent, you can use the SUM function to add up all the values in the "Amount" column. 

How to use the SUM formula in Google Sheets

  1. Select a cell to show an aggregated number of values.
  2. In the chosen cell, type “=SUM(” and select cells or a range you want to sum up, or by choosing from a list of functions (Go to the “Insert” tab, move to the “Function”, and select “SUM” function.
  3. Then, you can manually type in values or input cells or a range by cell reference.
  4. Press the “Enter” key on your keyboard.
How to insert the SUM function from the menu bar in Google Sheets

The general syntax of the SUM formula is as follows:

=SUM(value1, [value2, …])

value1: This is the first number(s) to be added up

value2 (Optional): You can insert arguments up to thirty

How to add up cells in Google Sheets

If you want to sum up a couple of numbers without any functions, you can calculate the results, using the plus signs in the screenshot above. To add numbers in cells B2, C2, and D2, and show the result in cell E2, you can type “=B2+C2+D2” by manually inputting or selecting cell B2 and pressing the “+” mark and do the same for other cells (C2 and D2).

You can receive the same return by using the SUM function. To do so, insert the SUM formula and select three cells you want to add, separating them with commas, as shown in the picture below.

How to sum up values in cells in Google Sheets with examples

How to add rows in Google Sheets

As described above, you can select a row or rows as argument(s) in the SUM formula.

If you want to sum up numbers in Row 6 (from Columns B to D), you can define the formula as follows: 

=SUM(B6:D6)

If you want to sum multiple rows, for instance, Row 8, Row 9, and Row 10 (again, from Columns B to D), you can create the formula below.

=SUM(B8:D8, B9:D9, B10:D10)
How to sum up values in a row or multiple rows in Google Sheets

How do I make columns added up in Google Sheets?

As described above, you can select a column or multiple columns as parameter(s) in the SUM function. Enter the arguments similar to when you add up rows, which is described above.

When you add up values in a column, you can select a range in a column as the following formula.

=SUM(B12:B14)

As another example, assume you want to sum up numbers in multiple columns, Column B (from Row 16 to 18), Column C (from Row 16 to 18), and Column E (from Row 16 to 18). You can define the formula as follows:

=SUM(B16:B18,C16:C18,D16:D18)
How to sum up numbers in a column or multiple columns in Google Sheets

How to sum up values in an array in Google Sheets

Imagine you need to aggregate figures in a 3x3-sized array. When you sum up numbers in an array (or arrays), you can use the SUM function. For example, if you want to calculate the total number of values in the array of B20:D22, the SUM function would look like the one below.

=SUM(B20:D22)
How to compute the total value of numbers in an array with the SUM formula in Google Sheets

How do you make numbers automatically add up in sheets?

If you in advance select a range including cells that you will fill in with numbers later, when you input any numbers in any cells in the selected range, all numbers are summed up automatically by the SUM formula. For example, let’s assume that you set the SUM formula “=SUM(B20:D22)”, and all cells in the range are blank. If you input any figures in the range later, the numbers typed in are automatically summed up, and you can see the aggregated number in the cell you input the formula (cell E20 in this example). 

How to calculate the total figure of values automatically in Google Sheets

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What are the other formulas related to mathematics and statistics

If you don’t get the solution you are looking for in this article, or you have further questions related to mathematics or statistics, you may find the answers in the following articles.

Go to the following articles to learn basic formulas in Google Sheets.

How to Do Math in Google Sheets for Beginners

ADD Function in Google Sheets: Explained

MINUS Function in Google Sheets: Explained

DIVIDE Function in Google Sheets: Explained

MULTIPLY Function in Google Sheets: Explained

PRODUCT Function in Google Sheets: Explained

How to Use SUMPRODUCT Formula in Google Sheets

How to Use MAX Function in Google Sheets

How to Use MIN Function in Google Sheets

How to Use MEDIAN Function in Google Sheets

How to Use AVERAGE Formula in Google Sheets

How to Use MODE Function in Google Sheets

MOD Function in Google Sheets: Explained

Navigate to the pages below to learn how to sum, count, or average numbers with a condition or multiple conditions. 

How to Use SUMIF Function in Google Sheets - sum up the numbers that meet a condition

SUMIFS Function in Google Sheets: Explained - sum up the numbers that meet multiple criteria

How to Use COUNTIF Function in Google Sheets - count the number of cells that meet a requirement

How to Use COUNTIFS function in Google Sheets - count the number of cells that meet multiple requirements

AVERAGEIF Function in Google Sheets: Explained - average the figures that meet a standard

AVERAGEIFS Function in Google Sheets: Explained - average the figures that meet multiple standards

AVERAGE.WEIGHTED Function in Google Sheets: Explained - use this formula to calculate the weighted average

MAXIFS Function in Google Sheets: Explained - seek for the maximum value that meets specific criteria

MINIFS Function in Google Sheets: Explained - seek for the minimum value that meets specific criteria

Visit the following post if you are interested in learning how to count the number of specific cells.

COUNT Function in Google Sheets: Explained - count the number of cells containing numeric values (except for blank ones)

COUNTA Function in Google Sheets: Explained - count the number of cells incorporating all types of values containing text and date, except for blank ones

COUNTBLANK Function in Google Sheets: Explained - count the number of blank cells

COUNTUNIQUE Function in Google Sheets: Explained - count the number of unique cells

You can learn about other Google Sheets formulas and tips that are not mentioned here on this page: LiveFlow‘s How to Guides

Learn how to do this step-by-step in the video below 👇

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