Transposing Information in a Sheet

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 22, 2014)

You probably know the feeling—you start entering data into your spreadsheet, get a good way into it, and realize that you should have made your columns into rows and your rows into columns. In other words, you want to turn your data by 90 degrees and continue working with the sheet.

This rotation of your data is commonly known as transposing. Sheets includes a built-in function that allows you to turn your data in this manner. Let's say that you want to transpose the data in the range A1:K7. All you need to do is select where you want the top-left corner of the transposed data to be (let's say it is cell A10) and enter the following formula in that cell:

=TRANSPOSE(A1:K7)

When you press Enter, the data is transposed into all the cells necessary. The TRANSPOSE function appears in cell A1, and every other cell in the target range is filled with the CONTINUE function. The bottom line, though, is that your data is rotated just as you wanted, ending up in the range A10:G20.

If you want to delete your original data, then you've got to make sure that you convert the target range (A10:G20) from formulas to actual values, before doing the deletion.

  1. Select the range of cells (A10:G20).
  2. Press Ctrl+C to copy the cells.
  3. Choose Edit | Paste Special | Paste Values Only.

Note that this process results in values in the target range, not formulas or formats. In other words, if your original cells (A1:K7) included formulas and was formatted in some way, once you get done the target range (A10:G20) will contain static values. If you want it to, instead, have formulas like the original cells did, you'll need to recreate those formulas (and apply any desired formatting).

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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