How to Get a Running total in Google Sheets ( Easy Guide )

In this tutorial, we will learn How to get a running total in Google Sheets.

How to Get a Running total in Google Sheets : Step by Step Guide

To get a running total in Google Sheets you can use the following methods

  • With the Use of SUM function
  • Adding a Dynamic Running Total Column

#With the Use of SUM function

To Get Running Total in Google Sheets with the use of SUM function.

SUM function Syntax

SUM(value1, [value2, ...])
  • value1 – Value1 is the first range or number value which will be used for addition
  • value2, ... – [ OPTIONAL ] – value 2 is the additional value which will be added to value1

In the following example, we will add the values in the first row of COLUMN A with the values in the current COLUMN A to get a running total.

Enclosed are the steps to get the running total in Google Sheets using the SUM function.

Step 1: Open Google Sheet which needs the running total

Step 2: Select the cell where you want to calculate the running total.

Step 3: Select the row in C2 and Type the function =SUM($B$2:B10)

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In this example, we are using the following formula “=SUM($B$2:B2)

  • It will calculate the running total of values starting from the 2nd row till the end of the 10th row.
  • As we need to starting value to be absolute we have used a dollar sign at the start of the first value and kept the value 2 without the dollar sign to keep it relative.

Click on the second on COLUMN C and type the formula =SUM($B$2:B2) and press enter as shown below.

How to Get a Running total in Google Sheets

Step 5 : Select the suggested Auto-fill

Select the suggested auto-fill and google sheets will apply the formula in the rest of the rows.

Now you will get a running total of the price in Column B under Running total Column C.

What happens when we use the SUM formula

In the above example we have used =SUM($B$2:B2) in the first row of Column C which tells google sheets to sum all the values from Cell B2 to B2 as it is only one cell it will return the same value 12.

As you auto-fill the formula further down on the rest of the rows Google Sheets will further add B2 to B3, B3 to B4, and so on until B10.

What is the difference between Absolute vs Relative Cell References

The reference to a particular cell can be relative or absolute and will determine the result when being copied.

  • Absolute Cell Reference means even if it is copied to another cell its value will stay intact. The dollar signs ($) in the formula indicate the use of Absolute Cell reference.
  • On the other hand, a Relative Cell references the value changes when being copied to another cell.

In the previous example where we have used the formula SUM($B$2:B2), we have two references

  • $B$2 which is for Absolute Cell Reference
  • B2 which is for Relative Cell Reference

#Adding a Dynamic Running Total Column to a Table

How to get a dynamic running total in google sheets ?

You can also get a dynamic running total using the following formula which will only get a running total if the value in the referenced cell is not blank.

We can apply the below formula in our previous example to get a Dynamic running total.

=IF(B2<>"",SUM($B$2:B2),"")

As the formula is applied in D2 the running total is calculated dynamically. Now simply confirm the auto-fill to apply the formula to the rest of the D column.

Conclusion

In this article, we have shown you two different methods using which you can get a running total in Google Sheets using the SUM and IF function.Try your hands at both the methods and see which is one is easier for you.

We hope this tutorial on How to Get a Running total in Google Sheets was helpful

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