Conditional formatting is a powerful tool in spreadsheets that allows you to automatically apply formatting such as colors, bolding, or italicizing to cells, rows, or columns based on their content. This can make it easier to visually analyze and understand your data.

To apply conditional formatting, start by selecting the cells, rows, or columns you want to format. Once you have your selection, navigate to the "Format" or "Home" menu and choose "Conditional Formatting". This will open a dropdown menu where you can choose to create a new rule or manage existing rules.

Creating a New Rule

To create a new rule, select "New Rule" from the dropdown menu. This will open a dialog box where you can define the conditions for your rule.

In the dialog box, you will see a section labeled "Format cells if...". Here, you can choose the type of condition you want to apply. There are several options available, including "Greater Than", "Less Than", "Equal To", "Text Contains", and more.

After choosing the condition type, you will need to specify the condition value in the box that appears. For example, if you chose "Greater Than", you would enter the value that the cells need to be greater than in this box.

Applying the Format

Once the condition is set, you can define the format to be applied when the condition is met. Click on the "Formatting style" dropdown and choose the desired formatting. You can choose to change the text color, fill color, or apply other types of formatting like bold or italic.

For example, if you want cells with a value greater than 100 to be highlighted in green, you would select "Greater Than" as the condition, enter "100" as the value, choose "Fill Color" as the formatting style, and then select the color green.

Managing Existing Rules

You can also edit or delete existing rules through the "Manage Rules" option in the "Conditional Formatting" dropdown menu. This will open a dialog box where you can see all the rules currently applied to your selection. You can edit a rule by selecting it and clicking "Edit Rule", or you can delete a rule by selecting it and clicking "Delete Rule".


Understanding how to apply conditional formatting to cells, rows, and columns can greatly enhance your ability to analyze and interpret data in spreadsheets. It not only saves time and effort but also makes your data more visually appealing and easier to understand. By practicing these techniques, you can become more proficient in using spreadsheets and unleash the full potential of your data.

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