App Tutorial

Change Date Format in Google Sheets: A Step-by-Step Guide

Jason Gong
App automation expert
Apps used
Google Sheets
April 15, 2024

Changing the date format in Google Sheets involves selecting cells, using the Format menu for built-in options, or applying custom formats and formulas for flexibility. This process enhances data readability and analysis.

Mastering these methods allows for effective data management and presentation.

Streamline your Google Sheets workflows and ensure data consistency by automating date format conversion with Bardeen.

How to Change Date Format in Google Sheets

Changing the date format in Google Sheets is essential for managing and analyzing data effectively. Google Sheets stores dates as integers internally, but it allows users to display dates in various formats for better readability and understanding. This guide covers several methods to change the date format in Google Sheets, including using built-in options, custom formats, and formulas.

Automate your Google Sheets tasks for more efficiency and accuracy with Bardeen. Download now to streamline your workflows.

Change Date Format in Google Sheets

To change the date format in Google Sheets to another locale or to customize it according to your needs, follow these steps:

  1. Select the cells containing dates you want to format.
  2. Go to Format > Number in the spreadsheet menu and choose Date for date only or Date time for both date and time in a cell.

This method applies the default Google Sheets date formats, instantly converting integers to recognizable dates.

Google Sheets Date Format

If the default date formats do not meet your requirements, Google Sheets offers custom date formats:

  1. Select the cells you wish to format.
  2. Navigate to Format > Number > Custom date and time.
  3. Choose a format from the list or create your own by deleting the existing format and adding date units (day, month, year) as needed.
  4. Adjust the display of each unit by clicking the double arrows next to them and selecting the preferred appearance.
  5. Click Apply once you're satisfied with the custom format.

This approach allows for a high degree of flexibility in how dates are displayed in your spreadsheet.

Format Date in Google Sheets

Another powerful method to format dates in Google Sheets is using the QUERY function:

'=QUERY(A1:C7,"select * format B 'd-mmm-yy (ddd)'")'

This formula changes the date format in a specified column within a range. The formula uses special codes to represent different date components (day, month, year). For a comprehensive list of these codes and additional formatting options, refer to the Google Sheets API guide on date and time format tokens.

Discover powerful Google Sheet automations and addons for Google Sheets to supercharge your spreadsheet tasks.

Additional Tips

Besides changing the date format, Google Sheets allows users to convert dates to numbers or text and vice versa:

  • To convert dates to numbers, select the cells and choose Format > Number > Number. Alternatively, use the DATEVALUE function: '=DATEVALUE("date_string")'.
  • To convert dates to text, use the TEXT function: '=TEXT(number, "format")', applying the same codes as in the QUERY function for formatting.
  • To convert text to dates, especially for custom formats not immediately recognized by Google Sheets, consider using add-ons like Power Tools for a more automated approach.

Understanding and utilizing these formatting options enhances data presentation and analysis in Google Sheets.

Automate Google Sheets with Bardeen: A Game Changer

Converting date formats in Google Sheets can be done manually as detailed above, or it can be automated for efficiency and accuracy. Automating this process with Bardeen not only saves time but ensures data consistency across your documents. Whether for reporting, analytics, or simply organizing your data, automating date format conversion can streamline your workflows. Here are some examples of how Bardeen can automate tasks related to Google Sheets:

  1. Save data from the Google News page to Google Sheets: This playbook automates the process of extracting and saving the latest news information directly into your Google Sheets. Ideal for keeping up with current events or industry trends relevant to your data analysis needs.
  2. Copy a table from Airtable to Google Sheets every day: Automate daily data transfer from Airtable to Google Sheets to ensure your data is always up-to-date, saving you the hassle of manual updates.
  3. Copy a newly created Asana task to Google Sheets: Keep your project management in sync by automatically copying new Asana tasks into a Google Sheets spreadsheet. Perfect for tracking tasks and progress across platforms.

These automation examples demonstrate how Bardeen can enhance your Google Sheets experience, making data management more efficient and effective. Download the Bardeen app at to start automating your workflows.

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