How To Goal Seek In Google Sheets

Google Sheets is a powerful tool for data analysis and organization. It offers various features that can help you manipulate and understand your data. One such feature is the ability to use Goal Seek, a tool that can reverse engineer the required input value to achieve a desired goal. This blog post will guide you on how to use this valuable feature in Google Sheets.

What is Goal Seek?

Goal Seek is a function in Google Sheets that allows users to adjust a specific input value to achieve a desired output. It’s a valuable tool for scenarios where you know the result you want a formula to return, and you want to know what input value will produce that result.

How to use Goal Seek

Google Sheets does not inherently possess a Goal Seek function. However, it can be added through an add-on. The add-on we will use in this guide is called ‘Goal Seek for Sheets’.

Step-by-step guide

Step 1: Install the Add-on

Navigate to the Google Sheets document where you want to use the Goal Seek function. Click on ‘Add-ons’ in the top menu and then ‘Get add-ons’. In the G-Suite Marketplace, search for ‘Goal Seek for Sheets’. Click on it and then click ‘Install’.

Step 2: Use the Add-on

Once the add-on is installed, you will find it under the ‘Add-ons’ menu. Click on ‘Goal Seek’ and then ‘Start’. This will open a sidebar on the right side of your sheet.

Step 3: Input your data

Input your data into the cells and build the formula for which you want to find a specific variable’s value.

Step 4: Start Goal Seek

On the sidebar, select the cell that contains the formula (Set cell), the goal value you want that cell to achieve (To value), and the variable cell that Google Sheets can change to reach the goal value (By changing cell). Then, click ‘Start Seeking’.

Example of Goal Seek in Google Sheets

Let’s take a simple example. Suppose you want to save $5,000 in 12 months and you want to know how much you need to save each month to achieve this goal.

In cell A1, write ‘Monthly Saving’, in cell B1 write ‘Total Saving’, and in cell A2 write ‘=B2*12’.

Now, apply the Goal Seek function. Set cell B2 (which contains the formula) to value 5000 (your goal value) by changing cell A2 (your monthly saving).

Goal Seek -> Start -> Set cell: B2 -> To value: 5000 -> By changing cell: A2 -> Start Seeking

After clicking ‘Start Seeking’, Google Sheets will calculate and give you the monthly saving amount you need to meet your goal.


Goal Seek is a valuable tool that allows you to find the unknown variable in a formula to achieve a specific goal. While it’s not a built-in function in Google Sheets, it can be easily added as an add-on. With Goal Seek, complex problem-solving becomes much more manageable!