Add Bullet Points in Google Sheets: 4 Easy Methods

Jason Gong
June 6, 2024

Use keyboard shortcuts or custom formats to add bullet points in Google Sheets.

By the way, we're Bardeen, we build a free AI Agent for doing repetitive tasks.

If you work with Google Sheets, you might love our GPT in Spreadsheets feature. It can automate data generation, formatting, and analysis, making your work easier.

Adding bullet points in Google Sheets can greatly improve the readability and organization of your data. In this quick guide, we'll walk you through simple steps to insert bullet points using keyboard shortcuts, custom number formats, and the CHAR function. By the end of this article, you'll be able to enhance your Google Sheets with bullet points like a pro.

Introduction to Bullet Points in Spreadsheets

Bullet points are an essential tool for organizing and presenting information in a clear, concise manner. In Google Sheets, bullet points can help you structure your data, making it easier to read and understand. They are particularly useful when creating lists, outlining processes, or highlighting key points within a spreadsheet.

Google Sheets offers several ways to add bullet points to your cells, allowing you to customize the appearance of your data. However, it's important to note that Google Sheets has some limitations when it comes to text formatting compared to word processing applications like Google Docs. Despite these limitations, you can still effectively use bullet points to enhance your spreadsheets.

  • Bullet points improve readability and organization in spreadsheets
  • Google Sheets has various methods for adding bullet points
  • Text formatting options in Google Sheets are more limited compared to word processors

For more advanced features, consider bringing AI into your spreadsheet to automate tasks and streamline your workflow.

Using Keyboard Shortcuts for Bullet Points

One of the quickest ways to add bullet points in Google Sheets is by using keyboard shortcuts. These shortcuts differ depending on your operating system, so it's important to know the specific key combinations for your device.

For Windows users, you can insert a bullet point by pressing 'Alt' + '7' on your keyboard. Here's a step-by-step guide:

  1. Place your cursor in the cell where you want to add a bullet point.
  2. Press and hold the 'Alt' key.
  3. While holding 'Alt', press the '7' key on your numeric keypad (ensure that Num Lock is on).
  4. Release both keys, and the bullet point will appear in the cell.

If you're using a Mac, the keyboard shortcut for inserting a bullet point is 'Option' + 'Shift' + '9'. Follow these steps:

  1. Click on the cell where you want the bullet point to appear.
  2. Press and hold the 'Option' key.
  3. While holding 'Option', press and hold the 'Shift' key.
  4. With both keys held down, press the '9' key.
  5. Release all three keys, and the bullet point will be inserted in the selected cell.

Using these keyboard shortcuts can save you time and connect Google Sheets with other apps to streamline your workflow.

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Applying Custom Number Formats

Google Sheets provides a powerful feature called 'Custom number format' that allows you to insert bullet points across multiple cells. This option gives you greater control over how your data is displayed, making it easier to create visually appealing and well-organized spreadsheets.

To apply custom number formats for bullet points, follow these steps:

  1. Select the range of cells where you want to add bullet points.
  2. Go to the 'Format' menu and choose 'Number' > 'More formats' > 'Custom number format'.
  3. In the 'Custom number format' dialog box, enter the following code: • @
  4. Click 'Apply' to see the bullet points appear in your selected cells.

The • @ code tells Google Sheets to display a bullet point (•) followed by whatever content is in each cell (@). This effectively blends the bullet points with your existing cell data, creating a nicely formatted list.

Custom number formats don't alter your underlying data; they only change how the data is visually represented. This means you can still perform calculations and manipulations on the cells as needed.

With the 'Custom number format' option, you have the flexibility to use different symbols or characters as bullet points. Simply replace the • in the code with your desired symbol, such as ■ @ or → @. If you need to automate repetitive formatting tasks, consider using tools to connect Microsoft Excel with other platforms.

Applying custom number formats is a quick and efficient way to enhance the readability of your lists and make your Google Sheets more visually engaging.

Utilizing the CHAR Function for Bullets

Another way to add bullet points in Google Sheets is by using the CHAR function. This function allows you to insert characters based on their Unicode values, including standard and custom bullet styles.

The CHAR function takes a number as input and returns the character represented by that number in the Unicode character set. For example, the formula =CHAR(8226) will insert a standard bullet point (•) in a cell.

To create a bullet point followed by text, you can combine the CHAR function with the concatenate operator (&) and a cell reference. For instance, if you have text in cell A1 that you want to precede with a bullet point, use the following formula:

  • =CHAR(8226) & " " & A1

This formula inserts a bullet point, followed by a space, and then the content of cell A1. You can drag this formula down to apply bullet points to an entire list.

The CHAR function offers flexibility in terms of bullet point styles. Here are a few examples:

  • =CHAR(9632) & " " & A1 inserts a filled square bullet (■)
  • =CHAR(9658) & " " & A1 inserts a right-pointing arrow bullet (►)
  • =CHAR(10003) & " " & A1 inserts a checkmark bullet (✓)

Using the CHAR function for bullet points is a dynamic way to create lists in Google Sheets. You can also integrate Google Drive with other apps to keep your files organized and up to date. If you modify the text in the referenced cells, the bullets will automatically update, saving you time and effort.

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Copy and Paste Bullet Points

If you already have bullet points in another document, like Google Docs, you can easily copy and paste them into your Google Sheets cells. This method is straightforward and saves time when you have pre-existing content with bullet points.

To copy bullet points from Google Docs:

  1. Highlight the text containing the bullet points in your Google Docs document.
  2. Right-click and select "Copy" or use the keyboard shortcut 'Ctrl' + 'C' (Windows) or 'Cmd' + 'C' (Mac).
  3. Navigate to your Google Sheets and double-click the cell where you want to paste the bullet points.
  4. Right-click and select "Paste" or use the keyboard shortcut 'Ctrl' + 'V' (Windows) or 'Cmd' + 'V' (Mac).

If you want to add multiple bullet points within a single cell, use 'Alt' + 'Enter' (Windows) or 'Cmd' + 'Enter' (Mac) to create line breaks between each bullet point. This shortcut allows you to format your bullet points properly, even when they're all in the same cell.

Remember that copying and pasting will maintain the original bullet point style from your source document. If you want to change the appearance of the bullet points, you can use the CHAR function or custom formatting methods discussed earlier. Check out integrate Dropbox with other apps to manage your documents more efficiently.

By using these simple copy and paste techniques, you can quickly transfer bullet points from external sources into your Google Sheets, saving time and effort in the process.

Enhancing Data Presentation with Bullets

Bullet points can significantly improve the visual impact and readability of your data presentations in Google Sheets. By organizing information into concise, easy-to-scan lists, you can help your audience quickly grasp key points and insights.

Here are some real-world examples of how bullet points can enhance data presentation:

  • Break down complex financial reports into digestible highlights, such as revenue growth, expense reduction, and profit margins.
  • Summarize key findings from a market research study, including customer preferences, competitive landscape, and growth opportunities.
  • Present project updates with clear, actionable next steps for each team member or department.

When creating bullet points in Google Sheets, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Keep bullet points short and focused, typically no more than 1-2 lines each.
  2. Use parallel structure, ensuring each bullet point follows a similar grammatical pattern.
  3. Prioritize information, leading with the most important points and progressively providing more detail.
  4. Maintain consistent formatting, such as font size, color, and spacing between bullets.

By leveraging bullet points in your Google Sheets data presentations, you can create more engaging, persuasive, and memorable communications that drive better decision-making and results. For more advanced tips, check out our guide on lead enrichment in sales.

Make your data presentations stand out. Use Bardeen’s automation tools to save time and focus on the important details.

Automate Google Sheets Tasks with Bardeen Playbooks

While manually adding bullet points in Google Sheets requires a bit of creativity, automating other tasks within Google Sheets can streamline your workflows and enhance productivity significantly. Bardeen offers a suite of playbooks that can automate various tasks, from updating task management tools to summarizing content directly within your sheets.

Discover how Bardeen can transform your Google Sheets experience:

  1. Create a ClickUp task when a Google Sheets spreadsheet is modified: Ensure your project management tools are always in sync with your data. This playbook automates the creation of tasks in ClickUp whenever your Google Sheets spreadsheet is updated, ideal for keeping track of changes without manual input.
  2. Add a row in Google Sheets when a ClickUp task is created: Reverse the flow by capturing new tasks from ClickUp directly into your Google Sheets. This playbook is perfect for maintaining a centralized database of tasks and their statuses.
  3. Create a ClickUp comment to a task when a Google Sheets spreadsheet is modified: Enhance collaboration by automatically posting updates to ClickUp tasks as comments whenever a Google Sheet is modified. Keep your team informed of the latest changes in real-time.
  4. Save selected text to Google Sheets, when I right-click: Capture valuable insights from the web directly into your Google Sheets with a simple right-click. This playbook is invaluable for research, content curation, and data collection.

These playbooks by Bardeen not only save time but also ensure that your information is consistently up-to-date across platforms. Automate your Google Sheets tasks today and focus on what truly matters.

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