How to Add a Trendline in Google Sheets [Complete Guide]

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In this article, we will learn about how to add a trendline in google sheets. A trendline is a line mostly used in charts that shows the trend between the data within the chart. The trendlines are highly useful and common with scatter charts to immediately describe the trend of the data either upward or downward.

If you look at a scatter chart without a trendline it will be impossible to judge the data direction, but if you add a trendline with the scatter chart you will easily understand where the data is going and what the most impactful area is. This is why we use trendlines and today we are going to learn everything about the trendline, how to add it, how to edit it, how to add multiple trendlines etc.

Use cases of Trendline in Google Sheets

We need so much graphical representation and charts when working with data, we often do critical data analysis and make different charts to get useful insights and understanding of the data in this way we must need to understand the elements of the charts and a trendline is one of the important elements of the chart. That’s why need to learn about trendlines, how to add a trendline, how to customize a trendline, and also how to add multiple trendlines when we have multiple data columns in the same chart.

The trendline is also known as the line of best fit, but in google sheets and data analysis, we called it a trendline which is easier to understand. In general, a trendline is a bound line for the movements of the data variables inside a graph, it looks like a diagonal line can be used when we have a minimum of three or more data pivot points.

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How to Add a Trendline in Google Sheets

In this section, we will see step-by-step procedures to understand the trendline, its need, and usage along with the help of examples of charts and dummy data. Let’s first understand how a basic chart looks like without a trendline vs with a trendline.

Add a Trendline in Google Sheets – A Simple Scatter Chart

Let’s make a simple scatter chart with some sample data, to understand this example, follow the steps below

Step 1

Sample data
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Step 2

Add a chart

2.1 Select the data

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2.2. Go to Insert > Chart

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2.3 Select a Scatter Chart

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Step 3

Now you can see the chart is being added (no trendline by default)

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Can you tell the trend of the data looking at this chart? No, you can not

Now let’s add a trendline to this chart.

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Add a Trendline in Google Sheets – Adding a Trendline

Step 1

Double click on the chart
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Step 2

Go to Customize tab in the chart editor

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Step 3

Go to Series

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Step 4

Scroll down, tick on the trendline checkbox

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Step 5

You have added a trendline

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Now can you tell the trend of the data? Yes, easily you can see the trendline and easily tell whether it’s going upward or downward.

This is why the trendline is very important and useful.

We have added a trendline, but can we customize it? Yes, we can customize it, we have a lot of customization options available to customize the color, size, thickness, and many other elements of our trendline. Let’s customize it.

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Add a Trendline in Google Sheets – Customizing a Trendline

In this section, we will customize a trendline using the Customize tab of the chart editor.

Step 1

Open the chart editor by double-clicking on the chart

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Step 2

Go to Customize tab

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Step 3

Click on Series Drop down and below you can see the trendline checkbox

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Step 4

As soon as you tick on this checkbox, the customization dashboard will appear.

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Now let’s see all the options in detail

Type

Here, you can change the type of the trendline, you have many mathematical expressions to show your trendline such as linear, exponential, polynomial, logarithmic, power series, and moving average trend lines, the default value is linear

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Line color

Here you can set the color of your trendline, the default color is blue

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Line opacity

Here you can set the opacity of the line by passing numbers or by selecting from given numbers.

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Line thickness

You can set the thickness of the trendline in px, the default value is 4px

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Label

As a label for the trendline, you can use None, Equation, or Custom (you can write your label)

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R2 checkbox

This value helps you analyze how closely the trend line fits the data. The closer this value is to the origin, the closer the fit is.

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So this is how you can easily customize your trendline using all the above options.

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Add a Trendline in Google Sheets – Adding Multiple Trendlines

In this section, we will learn how to add multiple trendlines, for multiple data columns. In the above example, we had one column for both axis but we can have multiple columns for price so in that condition we can easily add two trendlines for both prices. The procedure is the same Go to Series > Tick on the trendline checkbox and all the trendlines will be added for your all columns of data. But, if you want to add a trendline for some columns and not for some columns you can still do that.

Step 1

Multiple data columns

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Step 2

Add the scatter chart

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Step 3

Add trendline

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Step 4

To set a trendline individually for a series Go to Series > Click on the “Apply to all series” dropdown and select individual series to edit

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This is how you can apply trendline and all other customization features to specific series of all series.

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Add a Trendline in Google Sheets – Using TREND Function

In this section, we will see how to add a trend line in google sheets using the TREND function. The TREND function is used to find the trend of the data. It tends to calculate the trend is creating together by all the pivot points in the table or column. So we can find the trend values for each point and then plot these values along with the data values in the chart, the points of the trend values will be in a linear fashion, so we can use a trendline to connect the points and it will act like a trendline. So without adding a trendline from the chart we can see the trend of our data using the TREND function manually.

TREND function takes three arguments and returns a numeric value which is the trend for each data point.

Syntax

=TREND(known_data_y, [known_data_x], [new_data_x])

Known-data-y: it’s a mandatory parameter in which we need to define the data points.

Rest are the optional parameters to define known data of x and new data for x.

Note: It’s not a TREND Function tutorial, that’s why I am keeping things very simple for you.

Step 1

The TREND function

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Step 2

Pass the first argument (data column)

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Step 3

Pass the second argument (known data on the x-axis concerning the chart)

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Step 4

Pass the third argument (new data on the x-axis of the chart)

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Step 5

Press Enter key, and you get the value of the trend for each data point

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Step 6

Now select the entire data (three columns), and insert the chart

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Step 7

You can see the trend values are in a linear fashion

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Step 8

Enable trendline for the trend value to connect the dots

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Step 9

The trendline is added, this is how you can use the TREND function to get the trendline

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This is how you can add a trendline for your data series using the TREND function manually. Its a trend for your data which is showing as another data series

I hope you find this tutorial helpful.

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Notes

  • The trendline is also called the line of best fit
  • The trendline can be customized by color, opacity, thickness, etc
  • The trendline can be added for all series, and also for individual series
  • The trendline is not enabled by default you need to enable it whenever you create a chart in google sheets

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Frequently Asked Questions

How to quickly add a trendline in google sheets?

You need to have some data to add a chart of that data, after adding the chart go to chart editor and then go to Series dropdown and scroll down to find the checkbox of the trendline, check on it and your trendline will be added to your cart. As you tick on the checkbox, you will see the many options for customizing your trendline you can use them to customize the type, color, thickness, opacity, etc.

Conclusion

Wrapping how to add a trendline in google sheets. We have learned what is a trendline. what is the use of a trendline, we have seen a simple scatter chart with and without the trendline to see how important it is to see the data trend and the relationship between the multiple data series and their trends. I tried to include all the important things in this tutorial, we have discussed how to add single and multiple trendlines for your chart. We also discussed how to add a trendline for your specific data series, and in the last section, we saw a function TREND function to calculate the trend of the data within the sheet without using a chart then we plotted it into the chart along with the original data points to see the trend of the trending values data without enabling the trendline for the actual data series.

I hope you find this article helpful. I will see you soon with another helpful tutorial. Till then take care. Keep learning with Office Demy.

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M. Shaiq Ansari

Hi, I am Shaiq. A young and self-motivated content writer having years of experience expertise in MS Office suite, Google docs Editor Suite. I have a technical education background that empowers me to stand out in today's digital world. I am currently a freelance content creator and a part of a local digital marketing agency in Karachi Pakistan.

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