Slow Google Sheets? Here are 27 Ideas to Try Today 🐢

Slow Google Sheets?

We’ve all been there, stuck watching the little loading bar creep slowly, frustratingly to its conclusion:

Slow Google Sheets loading bar

How can you speed up a slow Google Sheet?

First off, this is a difficult question to answer because there are so many factors that may or may not be causing you to have a slow Google Sheet.

What follows in this article is some suggested optimization strategies and some research into what causes slow Google Sheets.


Strategies to speed up Google Sheets

  1. How to recognize slow Google Sheets
  2. Know the size limits of Google Sheets
  3. Measure a Google Sheet’s size
  4. Measure a Google Sheet’s calculation speed
  5. Delete un-used cells
  6. Convert formulas to static values wherever possible
  7. Use closed range references
  8. Remove volatile functions or use with caution
  9. Vlookup strategies
  10. Index-Match strategies
  11. Query function strategies
  12. Array Formula strategies
  13. Import Formula strategies
  14. Google Finance function strategies
  15. Use IF statements to manage formula calls
  16. Manage expensive formulas with a control switch
  17. Use Filter, Unique and Array_Constrain functions to create smaller helper tables
  18. Avoid long calculation chains
  19. Reference data on the same Sheet
  20. Use helper columns
  21. Split your slow Google Sheet into separate Sheets
  22. Use Conditional Formatting sparingly
  23. Leverage the power of Apps Script
  24. Use custom formulas sparingly
  25. Other troubleshooting tips for slow Google Sheets
  26. Understand changes in the cloud can take time to propagate
  27. Know when it’s time to move to a database

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