How to Make a Spreadsheet in Excel
By Wikihow

A spreadsheet is a great tool for adding the total cost of a series of items. This article explains how to make a basic spreadsheet in Microsoft Excel, using a simple expense report as an example.


  1. Open Excel
    • Notice there are rows and columns.
    • Each column has a capital letter on the top to show what column it is.
    • Each row has a number to the immediate left of the first column, to show what row it is.
    • Each cell is identified by a unique address consisting of the column letter followed by the row number. For example, the address of the cell in the first column, first row is A1. The address of the cell in the second column, third row is B3.
    • If you click a cell, the cell address appears just above column A.
  2. Click cell A1 and type: Item.
  3. Click cell B1 and type: Cost.
  4. Click cell A2 and type: Printing.
  5. Click in cell B2 and type 80.00. After you click outside of cell B2, 80 will show in cell B2.
  6. Click cell A3 and type: Postage.
  7. Click cell B3 and type: 75.55. After you click outside of cell B3, 75.5 will show in cell B3.
  8. Click cell A4 and type: Envelopes.
  9. Click cell B4 and type: 6.00. After you click outside of the cell B4, 6 will show in cell B4.
  10. Click cell A5 and type: Total
  11. Click cell B5 and type: =SUM(B2:B4). Click in another cell. A total of 161.55 will show in cell B5.
    • Notes:
    • SUM(B2:B4) is a formula. Formulas are used to perform math functions in Excel.
    • It is essential to put equals sign (=) just before a formula, so that Excel knows that it is a formula.
  12. Click Save.


  • These tips work in Excel 2003 and may also work in earlier versions of Excel.
  • Another way to calculate the total costs is as follows:
    1. Select cells B2 to B5.
    2. On the Standard toolbar, click AutoSum.
  • For the amounts in column B to be displayed a currency, with a dollar sign and two decimals, follow these steps:
    1. Select cells B2 to B5.
    2. Right click in cell B5 and a submenu will appear. Select Format Cells. The Format Cells dialog box appears. Click the Number tab in the dialog box.
    3. Select Currency in the Category list.
    4. In the Decimals field, type 2.
    5. Click OK.

Things You'll Need

  • A computer
  • Microsoft Excel
  • A Windows/Mac OSX OS


Reprinted from Wikihow

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