Slicers are a powerful feature in Google Sheets that are useful when using Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts.
With a slicer, you can easily filter your data which makes it much easier to analyze. Not many people know how to use slicers properly, but by the end of this post, you will!
In this tutorial, I will show you how to use slicers in Google Sheets.
Table of Contents
What is a Slicer?
A slicer is essentially a button that can be used to filter Pivot tables. Slicers can make your reports more interactive so that it is easier to analyze data.
Slicers can be moved around. They are not tied to any cells so you have a little customization on their placement.
If your report is large enough, using slicers is recommended because they are very user-friendly for filtering a large data set.
How to Create a Slicer
To learn how to create a slicer, let’s take a look at some example data. I will first create a Pivot table and a chart for this dataset where I have product sales for various branches of a store:
I will set up my Pivot table and chart to only look at total revenue per item type like this:
Now let’s say that I want to create a slicer so that I can easily filter this Pivot table and chart by “Branch” so that I can view how each branch performed.
Here are the steps to create a slicer:
1. First click anywhere in the Pivot table that you want to create the slicer for
2. Then in the top menu select Data>Slicer
3. On the right-hand side of the screen you should see the Slicer editor open up. Select the column that you want to be able to filter your Pivot table by. In this example, I have selected “Branch”
4. Your slicer should now be filterable by the column you select in the previous step. You can now filter your Pivot table or any chart tied to the pivot table by this column
5. After you have applied the slicer and selected what you want to filter by, your data should change. Here is my data after selecting “East”
Notice how the data in the Pivot table and chart both changed after filtering with my slicer. With slicers, you can easily create interactive reports that allow users to quickly filter data to get the information that they need.
Editing Your Slicer
If you want to edit the appearance of your slicer you need to select the “Customize” tab in the Slicer editor area:
If this disappears you will need to double click on your slicer to open this Slicer editor back up. After you select the “Customize” tab you will be able to edit the title, font, font size, and coloring of your slicer.
Filtering with Your Slicer
Besides just filtering by your general slicer you also have some advanced options for filtering data with your slicer.
You can filter by condition or by values.
To filter with these advanced options first click on the drop-down arrow on the right-hand side of your slicer:
Then select what you want to filter by. You can filter by condition or filter by value:
Here you will find many different options for rules you can apply to your slicer to filter data down even further.
If you regularly use Pivot tables and charts adding slicers to your reports will take your reports to the next level. Slicers are a user-friendly way to display data with buttons so that users can quickly filter them.
As you can see from this tutorial, they really don’t take that long to set up, and they add a lot of usability for quickly pulling out the data you need.