Last Updated on January 9, 2024 by Jake Sheridan
What is a row in Google Sheets?
Rows in Google Sheets refer to the horizontal group of cells in a spreadsheet.
Each row is identifiable by a number which can be seen on the left side of the spreadsheet.
Rows are a fundamental part of a spreadsheet’s structure and each row in a database often corresponds to a single record or observation.
For example, given a spreadsheet containing survey results, a single row might correspond to one respondent’s answers.
7 Ways to Work with Rows in Google Sheets
Below you will find step-by-step instructions for doing (almost) everything you can imagine* with rows in Google Sheets.
(*okay, maybe not everything, but a lot of stuff!)
1. How to modify row height
Here’s how you can modify row height in Google Sheets.
First, open the document containing the row you want to modify.
Next, select the row you want to modify the row height of.
We can select an entire row by clicking on the row number header on the left side of the spreadsheet.
Right-click on the row number, then select Resize row from the dropdown menu.
In the pop-up window, enter the desired row height in pixels, or choose to fit to data, then click “OK.”
Let’s try setting our row height to 45 pixels in height.
The selected row’s height should now be adjusted as specified.
Another way to adjust the row height is by dragging down the bottom edge of the row number header.
This method is an easy way to visually adjust the row height of a specific column.
2. How to insert a row
Here’s how to insert a new row in Google Sheets.
Open the Google Sheets document where you wish to insert a new row.
Next, we’ll need to decide on where to insert our new row. Click on the row number where you want the new row to appear above.
In this example, we’ll insert a new row above the ninth row.
Right-click on the selection to view the context menu. You can choose to either insert 1 row above or 1 row below the current selection.
Let’s click on the “Insert 1 row above” option.
A new row will be added above the selected row.
To insert multiple rows, we can create a selection of the number rows we want to insert.
For example, let’s try selecting three rows starting with row 9.
When we right-click on the selection, we’ll now have the option to insert the same number of rows above or below the selection.
3. How to freeze a row
Here’s how to freeze a row in Google Sheets.
First, open the spreadsheet where you want to freeze a row.
In our example above, we have an address dataset with a header row that we want to freeze.
Next, click on View > Freeze > 1 row.
When freezing rows, Google Sheets will always freeze the top-most rows. Since we only want to freeze the top row, we’ll select the 1 row option.
The top row of our spreadsheet should now be frozen.
When scrolling down the sheet, the top row will remain visible.
To freeze multiple rows, select the row you want to freeze up to.
In the table above we’ll select the second row to freeze. Freezing this row will also make the first row freeze.
In the View menu, select Freeze and choose the option labeled “Up to row…”.
Since we’ve selected the second row, we’ll select the “Up to row 2” option,
All rows up to the selected row should now be frozen.
A shortcut you can use to easily freeze rows is by expanding the freeze pane in your document.
Place your cursor over the horizontal freeze pane line. This should be the thick grey line that appears above the row numbers.
Use your cursor to drag the freeze pane until it’s right below the last row you want to freeze.
All rows above the freeze pane border of your spreadsheet should now be frozen.
4. How to delete a row
Follow these steps to delete a row in Google Sheets.
Go to the Google Sheets document where you want to delete a row
Click on the row number of the row you wish to delete.
Let’s try deleting the fifth row in our table.
Right-click on the selected row number and choose “Delete row” from the context menu.
The selected row will be removed from the sheet.
We can also access the Delete command through the Edit Menu.
Select the row you want to have deleted and click Edit > Delete. You’ll find an option to delete the current row.
Alternatively, you can use a convenient keyboard shortcut to delete a row.
Simply click on any cell in that row and use the shortcut Ctrl + Alt + – to display a menu with various delete options.
Click on the “Delete row…” option to delete the row of the selected cell.
5. How to move a row
Here’s how to move a row in Google Sheets.
Access the Google Sheets document containing the row you want to move.
In this example, we want to move row 9 to the top of our sheet.
Click and highlight the entire row you want to move.
Hover your mouse over the row number until the cursor changes into a hand icon.
Drag the selection upwards and release once the selection is in the right place.
We can also move cells by using the Cut and Insert commands.
To start, right-click on the selected row and choose “Cut.”
You may also use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+ X to cut the selection.
Right-click on the row and select Insert 1 row above.
You should now have an empty row where you can move your target row.
Select the blank row and use the shortcut Ctrl+V to paste the row copied earlier.
The row should now be moved to the desired location.
6. How to wrap text in a row
Here’s how to wrap text in Google Sheets.
Access the Google Sheets document where you want to apply text wrapping.
Click on the cell or drag to select multiple cells where you want to apply text wrapping.
In this example, we’ll add text wrapping to the first 10 records in our employee database.
Click on the “Text wrapping” icon in the toolbar.
Select “Wrap” from the dropdown menu.
The text in the selected cell(s) will now wrap to fit the cell size.
7. How to merge cells in a row
Here’s how to merge cells horizontally in Google Sheets.
Navigate to the Google Sheets document where you want to merge cells.
In this example, we want to merge together each row in the range A2:B15.
Merging these two values will allow the value in the employee ID field to also take up space in the company ID field.
Highlight the cells in the row that you want to merge.
Click on the “Merge cells” icon in the toolbar and choose “Merge horizontally.”
The selected cells will now be merged horizontally by row.
How do I create a row function in Google Sheets?
Here’s how you can start using the ROW function in Google Sheets.
Select an empty cell in your spreadsheet.
Type the ROW function and enter a cell reference as input.
In this example, we’ll use the formula =ROW(C6) to determine the row number of cell C6.
Hit the Enter key to evaluate the function.
As expected, the ROW function returns a value of 6.
We can use the ROW function to return a dynamic ID field that updates when rows are added and moved around.
Select the first cell in the ID field and enter the formula =ROW(A4) – ROW(A$4) + 1.
This formula subtracts the first cell’s row number from the current cell’s row number and adds one to return an ID.
The second ROW function contains an absolute row reference to ensure that the initial row will always remain the same even if the formula is copied over other cells.
We can use the Fill Handle tool to generate an ID for the remaining records in our database.
How do I format a row in Google Sheets?
Navigate to the Google Sheets document with the row you want to format.
Click on the row number to select the entire row.
In this example, we’ll format the first column and style it to look more like a proper header.
Use the toolbar to access different formatting options like font style, size, color, cell background color, and more.
For now, let’s give this row a blue cell background color.
We will also apply bold text formatting to the text in Row 1.
The row will now display the new formatting settings.
More row formatting tutorials:
- How To Change Row Height In Google Sheets
- How To Alternate Row Colors in Google Sheets
- How To Highlight A Row In Google Sheets
- How To Highlight Row Based On Cell in Google Sheets
- How To Resize Rows In Google Sheets
Hopefully this guide has given you an overview of working with rows in Google Sheets.
What’s Next?Explore some of the other useful resources on Sheets for Marketers:
- Google Sheets Templates – A collection of over 200 Google Sheets templates for SEO, marketing, PPC and more.
- Google Sheets Tutorials – A growing collection of spreadsheet tutorials for doing (almost) everything in Google Sheets.
- Data Studio Templates – A collection of over 50 Google Data Studio templates for SEO reporting.