Google Sheets is a free web application and a popular alternative to Microsoft Excel. The tool makes it easy to create, update and modify spreadsheets. It’s a great collaborative tool, allowing you to add as many people as you want and edit Google Sheets with others at the same time. The online tool allows you to work together in real time on a project in the same spreadsheet, wherever you are. To collaborate on Google Sheets, all you have to do is click on a Share button and there you allow your friends, colleagues or family to edit your spreadsheet.
When working on a shared Google spreadsheet, you may want other users to enter only restricted data into its cells. To prevent other people from entering wrong values in the cells, you can add a graphical control element like the scrolling menu which is similar to a list box which would allow users to enter only the values available in a given list. Apart from that, the drop-down list serves as a smarter and more efficient method of entering data.
That being said, a drop-down list or drop-down menu is a simplified way to ensure that people only fill in the values in your cells exactly the way you expect them to. Like Excel, Google Sheets lets you easily create a drop-down menu for your sheets. Moreover, it allows you to make partial changes to the drop-down list in case you want to change the select list in the cells. In this article, we explain in detail how to create a drop-down menu in Google Sheets and modify it.
Create a Dropdown Menu in Google Sheets
Throw Google Sheets
Open a new spreadsheet or open an existing spreadsheet file.
Select a cell in which you want to create a drop-down list. You can also select a group of cells, an entire column, or a row.
Move towards Sheets menu and click on the option Data.
To select Data validation in the drop-down menu. A data validation window appears with several options to customize.
The first field in the Data Validation window is the Range of cells which is automatically filled based on the selected cells. You can replace the range with a new value by simply clicking a table icon in the Cell Range field.
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The second field in the Data Validation window is the Criteria which has a list of various options in its own drop-down menu. The criteria contains options such as List of a range, List of elements, Number, Text, and Date.
- List from a range: This option allows you to create a list of values that have been extracted from different sheets or the list of values from different cells of the same sheet.
- Item List: This allows us to create a list of text values. They are entered in the edit field separated by commas.
- Number: This option does not create a drop-down list but ensures that the drop-down menu entry falls within a specific numeric range.
- Text: This option does not create a drop-down list but ensures that the entry is in an appropriate textual format.
- Date: This option does not create a drop-down list but checks if the entered date is valid or falls within a certain range.
- Custom formula is: This option does not create a drop-down list but ensures that the selected cell uses a user-specified formula.
Once the data to include in the list has been entered, select the option Show drop-down list in cell. Selecting this option ensures that the values appear in the cells.
You can also choose what should be done when someone enters invalid data that is not present in the list by selecting options with a radio button. You can choose to have either Show warning optional or Reject entry option on invalid data. the Reject entry The option does not allow you to enter a value that is not present in your drop-down list. On the other hand, Show warning The option allows you to enter invalid data which is not on your list but displays the warning message in the sheet.
The last option in the settings window is the Appearance. This option gives a hint to the user about the values or data he can enter in the cells. To activate this wizard, select the option Show validation help text next to the Appearance field. After selecting the option, type the instructions you want to give users about the values they can choose from the range of cells.
Click on Save to apply the changes.
Edit Dropdown List in Google Sheets
To add more values to the list or remove items from the drop-down menu, follow the steps below
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Move towards Data and select Data validation in the drop-down menu.
Select the cells and modify the elements in the entry.
Click on Save to apply the changes.