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How-tos

Google Sheets shortcuts to double your productivity

You open up Google Sheets for work, only to find thousands of lines and a seemingly endless array of columns. There’s so much information to organize and input. How are you going to get through it all?

The solution is shortcuts. You can double productivity even with a full page if you know the proper time-saving methods. Keep reading for everything you need to know. Oh, and having a desktop calculator will help speed things up, too.

First thing’s first: Enable shortcuts

Google Sheets require you to go through and enable these settings. Here’s how to do it.

  • Open a Google Sheet and click Help from the list of options near the top of the page.
  • At the bottom of the list, click on Keyboard shortcuts.
  • A small window will pop up. At the bottom, slide the toggle to the right next to Enable compatible spreadsheet shortcuts.
  • Close out that window. That’s it. Keyboard shortcuts are now enabled.

Repeat the last action

Designing a new spreadsheet takes forever without this shortcut. It’s simple: Google Sheets saves the previous action when you color in a cell or outline one with a box.

All you have to do is tap F4 on your keyboard, which will repeat the same action. This is especially helpful for lists, columns and bookkeeping when you need to copy items over from multiple Sheet tabs.

Simple copy and paste

Highlight a cell or group of cells that you want to copy. If you’re making and designing long columns, this saves untold amounts of time.

Once you’ve highlighted those cells, press and hold Ctrl, then tap the C key to copy that entire highlighted section. Then, press and hold Ctrl and tap the V key to paste it.

This shortcut also works with Google Docs. If you need to copy the information from a Doc to a Sheet, it will work the same way.

Select the entire row and column

You have a column that feels like it would be better somewhere else. So you want to highlight it and move it without dragging your mouse across the entire screen.

To start, click on one cell in a row that you want to highlight. Hold Shift and tap the spacebar, and you will highlight the entire row. Hold Ctrl and tap the spacebar to highlight the whole column.

Only paste in values

You highlight a headline on an article you want to copy but don’t want its size 72 text to destroy your spreadsheet. There’s a solution to that. Simply hold Ctrl and Shift, then tap the V key into the cell(s) you want. It will paste text that corresponds to your cell size and font preferences.

Alternatively, you can hold Ctrl and Alt, then tap the V key to only paste in the format if you wish. This comes in handy if you’re designing a new spreadsheet and want it to emulate an older one.

Master spreadsheets one step at a time

Using these shortcuts might feel foreign at first. But you’ll quickly adapt and notice how much faster you burn through your Sheet management and tasks.

Found these tips helpful? Keep reading to find Google Sheet formulas that take your prowess one step further.

Read more

Five free alternatives to Microsoft Excel

Five simple, useful Google Sheets formulas everyone should know

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