How to Comment and React in Google Sheets

Spreadsheet collaboration featured

Collaborating on spreadsheets is made easy in Google Sheets, thanks to comments, notes, and other reactions. Here’s how to use them.

Google Sheets is a powerful tool for working on complex datasets yourself, but you may need to get started collaborating with others. For instance, you might want to share feedback, ask questions, assign tasks, or express your emotions on particularly tricky sections of data.

That’s where comments and reactions can come in handy. Comments and reactions let you communicate with your team without leaving Google Sheets. You can add notes, suggestions, action items, write comments, or leave notes on any cell or range of cells.

We’ll show you how to comment and react in Google Sheets to collaborate better below.

Why Should You Use Comments and Reactions in Google Sheets?

Comments and reactions in Google Sheets are useful for several reasons. For instance:

  • Comments and reactions help you clarify information or ask for clarification from others.
  • They allow you to give feedback or praise to your collaborators, as well as provide a clear idea of your emotions or opinions.
  • You can assign tasks or follow up on them by using comments and reactions.
  • If you want to record the communication history that you can review later, comments can help you do it.

This is all possible using the collaborative features that Google has integrated into Google Sheets. We’ll explain how to use them next.

How to Add Comments in Google Sheets

Adding comments to a Google Sheet is a great way to communicate with your other Sheets collaborators. It allows you to provide feedback, ask questions, and make suggestions. You can also tag other people in your comments and assign them tasks.

Adding comments in a Google Sheets spreadsheet is easy (as long as you have editor or commentator viewing privileges).

To add comments in Google Sheets:

  1. Open your Google Sheets spreadsheet.
  2. Select the cell or range of cells that you want to comment on. If you select multiple cells, the comment will be attached to the first cell in the selection.
  3. Right-click on the cell (or click Insert on the menu bar) and select Comment.
    Add comments in Google Sheets
  4. Type your comment in the box that displays. You can also mention someone by typing @ followed by their name or email address. This will send them a notification about your comment.
  5. Click Comment to post your comment.
    Add a comment in Google Sheets
  6. To view the comment history, click Open comment history in the top-right (next to the Share button).
  7. In the panel on the right, you can view or respond to existing comments— press the text field in an open comment to reply to it.
  8. You can also resolve them by clicking the menu icon (the three dots icon) next to a comment and pressing Resolve or Delete.
    Respond, edit, resolve, or delete comments in Google Sheets

You can also use keyboard shortcuts to add comments faster:

  • On Windows: Ctrl + Alt + M
  • On Mac: Command + Option + M

How to Add Notes in Google Sheets

Notes are small text boxes you can attach to any cell in your spreadsheet. They are useful for adding extra information, reminders, or explanations without cluttering your sheet.

Notes are different from comments, which allow you to have conversations with other collaborators on your sheet. Notes are only visible when you hover over the cell with your mouse pointer or tap it on a mobile device.

To add a note to a cell in Google Sheets:

  1. Open your Google Sheets spreadsheet.
  2. Right-click on the cell where you want to insert your note.
  3. Select Insert note from the menu that displays.
    Insert a note in Google Sheets
  4. Type your note in the pop-up text box and press Enter when you’re done.
    An example note in Google Sheets
  5. You’ll see a small black triangle at the corner of the cell, indicating that it has a note attached—hover over it to view it or edit it.
  6. To delete a note, right-click on the cell again and choose Delete note from the menu.
    Deleting a note in Google Sheets

You can also use keyboard shortcuts to add notes quickly. On Windows or Mac, press Shift + F2 to insert or edit a note.

Collaborating in Google Sheets

Thanks to the steps above, you can quickly collaborate in Google Sheets by adding comments and reactions to your spreadsheet. This way, you and your colleagues will remain on the same page as you’re creating and analyzing your spreadsheet data.

You can use Google Sheets to help you save time with basic calculations, such as using your spreadsheet to sum the data in a column.

Struggling to find the data you’re looking for? You can use Google Sheet’s advanced search tools to help you find the information you want.

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