How to Auto Sum in Google Sheets

Unlike MS Excel, Google Sheets does not have a built-in AutoSum feature. But that doesn’t mean that summing in this application is slow or non-intuitive. In fact, Google Sheets does allow us to automatically sum cells thanks to its intelligent understanding of its users’ needs. And in this article, we will see two ways how Google Sheets achieves auto sum.

Let’s get started.

Auto Sum in Google Sheets from the Desktop

We first look at our offerings in the desktop version of the application, where Google Sheets provides us with two ways to auto sum our cells.

To show our examples, we have created the following dataset that we will be using to find the total number of sales achieved in a week:

dataset for auto sum in google sheets

1. Functions Tab

First up, we can use the SUM option from the Functions tab of Google Sheets. The application offers all the functions available under one button located on the rightmost side of the options ribbon.

locating the functions tab in google sheets

To auto sum using this method, simply follow these steps:

Step 1: Select the range of cells you want to apply the sum on.

selecting the range of cells to be auto summed in google sheets

Step 2: Navigate to the Functions tab and select the SUM option. As you can see, Google Sheets provides us with a multitude of options in this tab.

all options that are available in the functions tab

Step 3: Clicking on SUM will automatically generate the SUM function of Google Sheets under the selected cell range intuitively.

auto generated sum function in google sheets

Step 4: Simply press ENTER after you are done.

how to auto sum in google sheets using the functions tab

This is the simplest alternative to applying the SUM function in Google Sheets and it is fairly automatic.

2. Automatic Sum Recognition

Google Sheets is perhaps one of the most intuitive out there in terms of user experience. You can credit this all to Google’s wonderful AI, but the fact remains that it is immensely efficient.

With common functions like SUM, Google Sheets will automatically suggest ranges for you as you work with the function, on top of offering you advice.

Here we can see it in action as we input the SUM function:

auto sum in google sheets animated

This can even work with a gap in between:

google sheets can automatically recognize value range for a simple function like sum

Learn more about it in our How to Add Up A Column in Google Sheets article.

Or for transposed values:

auto sum can also work with transposed values or rows

Learn more in our How to Sum Multiple Rows in Google Sheets article.

Auto Sum in Google Sheets from a Mobile Device

We still haven’t reached the point in technology where most desktop applications will run as intuitively on a mobile device. And Google Sheets is no exception.

While the following steps may not be as “automatic”, they will still help you find and use the SUM function in Google Sheets from a mobile device.

Step 1: Tap the “fx” button on the bottom of the screen after selecting the target cell.

tapping the fx button brings up all the functions available

Step 2: Either type in to search for the SUM function or navigate to the option from Math. You can find the Math option if you scroll down.

ways to find the sum function in google sheets from a mobile device

Step 3: Tapping on the SUM option will automatically insert the SUM function onto the selected cell.

all the sum functions that are available

The rest is the same as using the SUM function from the desktop.

Final Words

That concludes all the ways we can auto sum in Google Sheets. We hope you now understand how the application works better.

Feel free to leave any queries or advice you might have for us in the comment section below.

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Mehrab Imtiaz

Mehrab Imtiaz

Mehrab Imtiaz is a Technical Writer for specializing in everything Google Sheets. Mehrab has always had a profound passion for writing and with his experience with MS Excel and Google Sheets throughout his career, it seems to be a great match when it comes to dishing out tips and tutorials for all to enjoy.

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