In Google Sheets sorting can help you work with specific data. In Google Sheets filtering can help you see only what you want to see.
Google Sheets allows you to analyze and work with a significant amount of data. As you add more content to your spreadsheet, organizing information in it becomes important. Google Sheets allows you reorganize your data by sorting and applying filters to it. You can sort your data by arranging it alphabetically or numerically, or you can apply a filter to narrow down the data and hide some of it from view.
In this lesson, you will learn how to sort data to better view and organize the contents of your spreadsheet. You will also learn how to filter data to display only the information you need.
Types of sorting
When sorting data, it's important to first decide if you want the sort to apply to the entire sheet or to a selection of cells.
- Sort sheet organizes all of the data in your spreadsheet by one column. Related information across each row is kept together when the sort is applied. In the image below, the Name column has been sorted to display client names in alphabetical order. Each client's address information has been kept with each corresponding name.
- Sort range sorts the data in a range of cells, which can be helpful when working with a sheet that contains several tables. Sorting a range will not affect other content on the worksheet.
To sort a sheet:
In our example, we'll sort a list of customers alphabetically by last name. In order for sorting to work correctly, your worksheet should include a header row, which is used to identify the name of each column. We will freeze the header row so the header labels will not be included in the sort.
- Click View and hover the mouse over Freeze. Select 1 row from the menu that appears.
- The header row freezes. Decide which column will be sorted, then click a cell in the column.
- Click Data and select Sort Sheet by column, A-Z (ascending) or Sort Sheet by column, Z-A (descending). In our example, we'll select Sort Sheet by column, A-Z.
- The sheet will be sorted according to your selection.
To sort a range:
In our example, we'll select a secondary table in a T-shirt order form to sort the number of shirts that were ordered by class.
- Select the cell range you want to sort. In our example, we'll select cell range G3:H6.
- Click Data and select Sort range from the drop-down menu.
- The Sorting dialog box appears. Select the desired column you want to sort by.
- Select ascending or descending. In our example, we'll select descending (Z-A). Then click Sort.
- The range will be sorted according to your selections (in our example, the data has been sorted in descending order according to the Orders column).