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Google Spreadsheet vs Excel Which One to Choose [2024 Updated]

January 15, 2024 884 views

When it comes to spreadsheet applications, you'll generally find two proponents: Google Sheets users and Microsoft Excel users. In fact, Google Sheets vs Excel is an age-old conundrum among managers. The battlefield is ripe with all kinds of varying (and often contradictory) reviews and comments on both these tools. In this guide, we will deep-dive to understand both these options in great detail—from analyzing the key features to hearing what real-world users have to say; we'll throw light on nearly every useful component. Let's get going.

Part 1. Introduction to Google Spreadsheet & Excel

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#1 What is Google Spreadsheet

GG sheet


Google Sheets is a spreadsheet application that allows you to create and edit spreadsheets online. It is part of the Google Workspace suite of online productivity tools, which also includes Google Docs, Google Slides, and Google Drive. Google Sheets is a web-based application, so you can access it from any computer or mobile device with an internet connection.

Google Sheets is a powerful tool that can be used for a variety of tasks, including:

  • Data entry and management: Google Sheets can be used to enter and manage data, such as customer lists, inventory lists, and financial data.

  • Calculations: Google Sheets includes a variety of built-in formulas and functions that can be used to perform mathematical and statistical calculations on your data.

  • Data analysis: Google Sheets can be used to analyze your data to identify trends and patterns. You can also use Google Sheets to create charts and graphs to visualize your data.

  • Collaboration: Google Sheets allows you to share your spreadsheets with others and collaborate on them in real time.

#2 What is Excel

excel


Excel, a product of Microsoft, is a powerful spreadsheet software widely used for data management, analysis, and visualization. It provides a comprehensive range of functions and tools for complex calculations, making it a go-to choice for businesses, analysts, and professionals across various industries. Excel offers an extensive array of templates and features for tasks like financial modeling, data analysis, and reporting.

Part 2. Detailed Comparison: Google Spreadsheet vs Excel

To provide you with a comprehensive understanding of Google Spreadsheet and Excel, let's delve into a detailed comparison across key aspects.

Features

Google Spreadsheet

Excel

Collaboration

Real-time collaborative editing

Collaboration through OneDrive integration

Accessibility

Cloud-based, accessible from any device

Desktop application with cloud integration

Formulas & Functions

Offers a wide array, some differences in syntax

Extensive library, industry-standard

Automation

Basic scripting with Google Apps Script

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications)

Add-ons & Extensions

Rich library of add-ons for enhanced functionality

Vast marketplace for third-party add-ins

Price

Part of Google Workspace, free tier available

Part of Microsoft 365, subscription-based

Pros

- Seamless collaboration

- Advanced data analysis capabilities


- Cloud-based, no need for local installation

- Comprehensive set of functions


- Strong integration with other Google services

- Robust data visualization tools

Cons

- Limited offline functionality

- Steeper learning curve for beginners


- Some advanced features may require add-ons

- Paid subscription for full feature set

In terms of user experience, Google Spreadsheet is known for its user-friendly interface and accessibility. It's highly suitable for collaborative projects and well-suited for beginners. On the other hand, Excel excels in complex data analysis and is favored in professional settings. Its robust capabilities make it an industry standard. For beginners, it may have a steeper learning curve.

Recommendations:

  • Google Spreadsheet: Ideal for collaborative projects, remote teams, and those seeking a cloud-based solution.

  • Excel: Best suited for advanced data analysis, financial modeling, and scenarios requiring extensive formula usage.s

Part 3. How to Use Google Spreadsheet & Excel

Mastering the art of spreadsheet creation is key to unlocking the full potential of both Google Spreadsheet and Excel. In this section, we'll walk you through the process, providing step-by-step instructions along with valuable references. Whether you're a beginner looking to create your first table or a seasoned user seeking advanced techniques, we've got you covered. Let's dive in and discover the seamless functionality of these two powerful spreadsheet applications.

Google Spreadsheet

How to Use

Creating tables in Google Spreadsheet is a breeze. Follow these steps for a seamless experience:

Step 1: Open Google Spreadsheet and sign in to your Google Account.

Click Sign in


Step 2: Click on "Blank" to start a new spreadsheet.

Click Blank


Step 3: Select the cells you want to include in your table.

Step 4: Navigate to the "Insert" menu and choose "Table."

Click Insert


How to Download

Installing Google Spreadsheet is straightforward. Here's how you can do it:

Step 1: Visit the official Google Sheets page.

Step 2: Click on "Go to Google Sheets" and sign in with your Google Account.

Sign In


Step 3: For Windows: Click on "Download" and follow the on-screen instructions. For Mac: Access Google Sheets directly from your browser.

Click download


Excel

How to Use

Excel offers a powerful platform for creating tables. Here's a quick guide:

Step 1: Launch Excel and create a new workbook.

Click Open


Step 2: Select the data range you want to include in your table.

Step 3: Go to the "Insert" tab in the ribbon and choose "Table."

Choose table


How to Download

Downloading and installing Excel is a straightforward process:

Step 1: Visit the official Microsoft 365 Excel page.

MS 365 page


Step 2: Click on "Try for free" or "Buy now" based on your preference.

Click buy now


Step 3: Follow the on-screen instructions for installation on Windows or Mac.

Follow instruction


These step-by-step instructions will help you get started with Google Spreadsheet and Excel, ensuring you make the most out of these powerful tools.

Part 4. Best Free Alternative to Google Spreadsheet vs Excel -  WPS Office

WPS Office logo


WPS Office is a modernized powerful office tool Apps suite. It includes WPS Writer, WPS Spreadsheet, and WPS Presentation, which are compatible with all major operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. WPS Office is widely used by individuals and businesses alike, and it is a popular alternative to Microsoft Office.

WPS Spreadsheet is a powerful spreadsheet application that offers a wide range of features, including:

  • Data entry and management

  • Calculations

  • Data analysis

  • Charts and graphs

  • Collaboration

WPS Spreadsheet also includes a number of advanced features, such as:

  • Pivot tables

  • VLOOKUP

  • Power BI integration

WPS Office is a more modern and user-friendly office suite than LibreOffice. WPS Office also offers a number of advanced features that are not available in LibreOffice Calc, such as pivot tables, VLOOKUP, and Power BI integration.

WPS Office is a good alternative to Excel for users who are looking for a free and open-source office suite with a modern interface and a wide range of features. However, Excel is still the better choice for users who need to use advanced spreadsheet features or who need to collaborate with others who are using Excel.

I have been using WPS Office for several months now, and I have been very impressed with it. The interface is modern and user-friendly, and the features are comprehensive. I have used WPS Spreadsheet to create and edit spreadsheets for a variety of purposes, including data analysis, budgeting, and forecasting. I have also used WPS Presentation to create presentations for work and school.

I would recommend WPS Office to anyone who is looking for a free and open-source office suite. It is a great alternative to Microsoft Office, and it offers a wide range of features that are suitable for both personal and professional use.

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FAQs about Google Spreadsheet vs Excel

Can I convert Google Sheets to Excel?

To convert a Google Sheet to Excel:

Step 1: Open the Google Sheet you want to convert.

Step 2: Click on "File" in the menu.

Step 3: Select "Download."

Step 4: Choose "Microsoft Excel (.xlsx)."

Choose MS Excel


The file will be downloaded in Excel format, which you can then open in Microsoft Excel. That's it!

Can WPS Spreadsheet open excel file?

Yes, WPS Spreadsheet can open Excel files. It supports the .xls and .xlsx file formats, allowing you to easily view and edit Excel documents using WPS Spreadsheet. This makes it a versatile option for users who frequently work with Excel files.

Summary

This comprehensive guide compares Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel, highlighting their respective strengths. Google Sheets excels in collaboration, while Excel is a powerhouse for complex calculations. WPS Office emerges as a dynamic alternative, combining a modern interface with potent AI features, catering to diverse professional needs. It stands out for its compatibility across various systems, making it a formidable contender in the world of spreadsheet applications. For a versatile and powerful office suite, WPS Office proves to be an excellent choice.


15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.