How To Insert Special Characters In Google Sheets

Last Updated on October 31, 2023 by Jake Sheridan

In this tutorial, you will learn how to insert special characters in Google Sheets.

Many word processors and other applications have features to insert special characters in text, but Google Sheets unfortunately doesn’t have this feature. This doesn’t mean it’s impossible to use special characters in Google Sheets, but it does mean it takes a few extra steps

Below are some workarounds you can use to insert special characters into Google Sheets

Copy Special Characters from Google Docs

While Google Sheets doesn’t have the special character feature, Google Docs does. One simple method to insert Special Characters into Google Sheets is to copy them from Google Docs following these steps

Step 1

Open a Google Docs document and click on the Insert menu, then choose the Special Characters option

Step 2

The Insert Special Characters dialog box will appear with dropdowns to select category and subcategory and a box to display the selected special characters

Step 3

Click on a special character to insert it at the cursor in the document

Step 4

You can also search for a special character by name

Step 5

Or draw a symbol to find the one you’re looking for

Step 6

Once you have the special characters you want, close the dialog box and select the characters, then hit CTRL + C on Windows or CMD + C on Mac to copy the characters

Step 7

Open Google Sheets and paste the special characters into the desired cell using the keyboard shortcuts CTRL + V on Windows or CMD + C on Mac

Copy Special Characters from the Internet

You can also copy special characters from the internet

Here’s how:

Step 1

Open your web browser of choice and search the internet for the special character you want. For example, you could search for “checkmark character”, or “red circle character”

Step 2

Open a search result and locate the special character in the website text, then select it and copy it

Step 3

Paste the special character into Google Sheets. If it comes in with undesirable formatting, paste values only by opening the Edit menu, then hovering over Paste Special and choosing Paste Values Only

Step 4

The special characters will appear in your Google Sheet without formatting


Example Spreadsheet: Make a copy of the example spreadsheet

In this tutorial, I covered how to insert special characters in Google Sheets. Want more? Check out all the Google Sheets Tutorials.