Get Started with Data Validation in Google Sheets | 3 easy steps

Get Started with Data Validation in Google Sheets | 3 easy steps
Reading Time: 4 minutes
Example of data validation

How to Get Started with Data Validation in Google Sheets

Learn how to use data validation in Google Sheets. Also, learn about variations in data validation by tweaking parameters.

Why use Data Validation in Google Sheets?

There are no restrictions for adding data to Google Sheets. This may lead to the input of inappropriate data in tables, thereby leading to errors. To avoid this problem, Google Sheets allows you to restrict values inside a cell by using Data Validation. You can also restrict users to input a value from a list of values only.

Example 1: Select from a List of Items

Step 1: Select the column of interest

  • Click on the column or select the cells of interest.

Select column of interest
Figure 1: Select column of your interest | Data Validation in Google Sheets

Step 2: Go to Data

  • Navigate to the Data button in the top menu.
  • Select Data.
  • Select Data validation.

Select Data Validation
Figure 2: Select Data Validation

Step 3: Select List of Items as criteria

  • Ensure that the range in cell range is as per your requirement.
  • Go to Criteria.
  • Select List of Items.
  • Mention the items in the tab beside the criteria. Separate the values by comma.

Choose criteria
Figure 3: Choose List of items as your criteria

  • Keep the other parameters as it is.
  • Select Done.

Data validation created for selected column
Figure 4: Data validation created for selected column

Example 2: Reject Invalid Data

Step 1: Select the column of interest

  • Click on the column or select the cells of interest.

 Select column of interest
Figure 5: Select column of your interest

Step 2: Go to Data

  • Navigate to the Data button in the top menu.
  • Select Data.
  • Select Data validation.

Select Data Validation
Figure 6: Select Data Validation

Step 3: Select List of Items as criteria

  • Ensure that the range in cell range is as per your requirement.
  • Go to Criteria.
  • Select List of Items.
  • Mention the items in the tab beside the criteria. Separate the values by comma.
  • Select the Reject input option in Invalid Data.
  • Select Done.

Select Reject input
Figure 7: Select Reject input for data validation in Google Sheets

Example 3: Select between Range of Numbers

Step 1: Select the column of interest

  • Click on the column or select the cells of interest.
Select column of interest
Figure 8: Select column of your interest

Step 2: Go to Data

  • Navigate to the Data button in the top menu.
  • Select Data.
  • Select Data validation.
Select Data validation
Figure 9: Select Data validation

Step 3: Select Numbers as criteria

  • Ensure that the range in cell range is as per your requirement.
  • Go to Criteria.
  • Select Numbers.

Select Number as criteria
Figure 10: Select Number as a criteria for data validation in Google Sheets
  • Mention the range in the tabs beside Numbers.
  • Keep the other parameters as it is.
  • Select Done.
Enter the range of numbers valid
Figure 11: Enter the range of valid numbers

  • Now, if you try to input any values outside this range, Google Sheets will show you an error, with a red flag in that particular cell.
  • Below is an example where 2 numbers are inserted outside the range:

Incorrect inputs highlighted
Figure 12: Incorrect inputs are highlighted

See Also

Google Sheets: How to Use Pivot Tables: Learning how to create and use Pivot Tables for analysing data in Google Sheets.