How To Alternate Column Colors In Google Sheets

Google Sheets is a highly intuitive and user-friendly tool that allows you to create, edit and collaborate on spreadsheets online. One of its many features is the ability to customize the appearance of your spreadsheets by adding colors to your columns. This not only makes your data visually appealing but also improves readability by clearly demarcating one column from another.

In this blog post, we will guide you through the steps to alternate column colors in Google Sheets. Let’s get started!

Google Sheets Interface

Using Conditional Formatting

The Conditional Formatting feature in Google Sheets can be used to alternate column colors based on certain conditions.

Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Open your Google Sheets document.
  2. Select the range of cells you want to format.
  3. Click on Format in the top menu and select Conditional formatting from the drop-down list.
  4. In the sidebar that appears, under the Format cells if dropdown, select Custom formula is.
  5. In the Value or Formula input box, enter the formula:
=MOD(COLUMN(), 2) = 0

This formula alternates the color for every other column starting from column B (the second column), as column numbers start from 1 and we are checking if the column number is divisible by 2 (i.e., even).

  1. Next, in the Formatting style section, choose the color you want for your alternate columns and click Done.

Your Google Sheets document should now display alternating column colors!


There you have it! You now know how to alternate column colors in Google Sheets using conditional formatting. This simple trick enables you to make your spreadsheets cleaner and more readable, thereby making data analysis much easier. Keep exploring the many features of Google Sheets to make the most out of this powerful tool!