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How to add columns in Google Sheets

how to add columns in google sheets inserted macbook table
Image used with permission by copyright holder

When you enter data into a spreadsheet, you may need to make room for more. You might want to insert one or more columns to include additional data. We’ll show you how to add columns in Google Sheets, including how to insert a single column to the left or right and how to add multiple columns to your sheet.

Difficulty

Easy

Duration

5 minutes

What You Need

  • Web browser

  • Google account

Add a single column in Google Sheets

Visit Google Sheets, sign in with your Google account, and open the workbook to the sheet you want to use.

Step 1: Choose a column adjacent to the one you want to add. You can do this by selecting the column header.

As an example, we want to insert a column between columns C and D, so we choose column C.

Column C selected in Google Sheets.
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Step 2: Select the Arrow on the right side of the column header to display the drop-down menu.

Arrow next to the column C header.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Step 3: Pick Insert 1 column left or Insert 1 column right, depending on where you want the column. Using our example, we pick Insert 1 column right.

Insert column right and left options in the Insert menu.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Step 4: You’ll then see a blank column inserted into the spot you selected.

Alternatively, you can select Insert from the menu or right-click the adjacent column. Then, choose Insert 1 column left or Insert 1 column right.

One column added in Google Sheets.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Add multiple columns in Google Sheets

You certainly don’t have to add just one column at a time if you need to insert more. You can add multiple columns at once just as easily.

Step 1: Select the number of columns you want to insert. You can do this by selecting the first column and dragging through the remaining ones.

For example, we want to add three columns between columns C and D, so we select columns A, B, and C.

Columns A, B, and C selected in Google Sheets.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Step 2: Select the Arrow on the right side of one of the column headers in the group to display the drop-down menu.

Arrow next to the column C header.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Step 3: Pick Insert 3 columns left or Insert 3 columns right, depending on where you want the columns. Google Sheets automatically enters the number of columns you have selected in the drop-down menu.

Using our example, we pick Insert 3 columns right.

Insert columns right and left options in the Insert menu.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Step 4: You’ll then see blank columns added per the number of columns you selected.

Alternatively, you can select Insert from the menu or right-click the group of columns. Then, choose Insert 3 columns left or Insert 3 columns right.

Three columns added in Google Sheets.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Now that you know how to add columns in Google Sheets, take a look at how to lock cells or how to merge cells in your spreadsheet.

Sandy Writtenhouse
Sandy has been writing about technology since 2012. Her work has appeared on How-To Geek, Lifewire, MakeUseOf, iDownloadBlog…
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