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How to Sort by Month in Google Sheets (Easiest Way in 2024)

May 8, 2024

How to Sort by Month in Google Sheets

Depending on the structure of your data and specific needs, there are several approaches to sort by month in Google Sheets. This includes sorting by month name, by date, or using a custom sort order. In the following sections, we will explore the step by step process for each method of sorting by month in Google Sheets. 

Sort by Month in Google Sheets

To organize data by month names in Google Sheets, we convert month names into numerical format for sorting. This tutorial shows how to create a helper column for sorting months chronologically.

1. Convert Month Names into Numerical Format for Sorting

In the first cell under "Month Number" (assuming it's column D, starting at D2), use the formula =MONTH(DATEVALUE(A2&" 1")) where A2 refers to the first month name in your dataset.

how to sort by month in google sheets

Drag the fill handle down to apply this formula to all rows in your dataset.

google sheets sort by month

2. Sort Dataset by the Numerical Month Helper Column

After calculating month numbers, select your entire dataset, then go to Data > Sort range > Advanced range sorting options.

sort by month in google sheets

Tick the box next to "Data has header row". Choose to sort by the "Month Number" column (column D in this case).

sort by month google sheets

Your data should like like this.

Sort by Date in Google Sheets

Sorting your dataset by dates is crucial for temporal data analysis. This tutorial demonstrates using Google Sheets' built-in features to sort data by date effectively.

1. Highlight Date Column Including Header for Sorting

Highlight the column with dates (column B), including the column header "Date".

2. Use Data > Sort Range to Organize Dates Chronologically

Go to Data > Sort range (or Sort sheet if sorting the entire sheet) > Advanced range sorting options.

Choose your date column (B), and select "A → Z" to sort from earliest to latest date.

Custom Sort Order in Google Sheets

To demonstrate how to sort by a custom sort order in Google Sheets, let's use a dataset and a custom fiscal year order starting in April. This tutorial will guide you through creating a helper column using the MATCH function and then sorting by that column.

1. Add 'Custom Order' Helper Column to Dataset for Custom Sorting

In your main dataset, add a new column (let's use column D for "Custom Order"). This column will temporarily hold numerical values that represent each month's position in your custom fiscal year order.

2. Use MATCH Function to Assign Custom Order Values to Months

In cell D2 (right next to your first month, January), enter the following formula to match the month to its custom order: =MATCH(A2, G$1:G$13, 0). This formula assumes your fiscal year order is in cells G1 to G13. Adjust the range G$1:G$13 if your fiscal year order is located elsewhere.

Drag this formula down from D2 to fill all rows in your dataset.

3. Sort Entire Dataset by 'Custom Order' Helper Column

Highlight your entire dataset, including the new helper column (from A1 to D13 or however many rows you have).

Go to Data > Sort range > Advanced range sorting options.

Tick the box next to "Data has header row". Sort by the column "Custom Order" or column D, A → Z.

4. Confirm Dataset is Sorted According to Custom Fiscal Year Order

Your dataset is now sorted according to your custom fiscal year order. Months will follow the sequence starting from April to March, according to the fiscal year order you provided.

We hope that you now have a better understanding of how to sort by month in Google Sheets using different methods. 

If you enjoyed this article, you might also like our article on how to set up dynamic cell references in Google Sheets or our article on how to convert fraction to percent in Google Sheets. 

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