The SUMIF function is a computer program that you run from a worksheet cell formula. It adds a group of numbers together from a worksheet area you specify, called a range, based upon a specified condition or criteria from another worksheet area. You run the SUMIF worksheet function by typing its name in a formula then followed by the information it is suppose to evaluate and calculate. This function's strength is it allows you to add only the values that meet a given condition like sum all values that = widget1. It has the capability to look at information from one area of the worksheet (range) and then add the information from another area (range). The two ranges do not have to be next to each other. The SUMIF worksheet function is most commonly used on rows or columns of information on the worksheet. The function also has the capability to search for parts of text within other text when evaluating its condition. Since this function uses a group of values to evaluate against a condition and a group of values to sum, for simplicity, make sure the groups have the same number of rows or columns as the SUMIF function uses the index position of what it finds to determine what to add. For example, consider the table below. If the SUMIF worksheet function was used to evaluate the table and sum all the Widget1 values, it would use the index positions 1,3,5 from Column 1 because they match Widget1, then sum the corresponding index positions in Column 2 which are 100,300,500.

Column1 | Column2 |

Widget1 | 100 |

Widget2 | 200 |

Widget1 | 300 |

Widget4 | 400 |

Widget1 | 500 |

Whenever you type a formula in a worksheet cell, this is called syntax or grammar. The general SUMIF function syntax has a format like this when you type it in a worksheet cell:

=SUMIF(range, criteria,[sum_range])

Where range, criteria, [sum_range] are called the function argument list. Remember, you are running a computer program at this point so the program needs information to operate and that is why there is an argument list. When you see an argument list and you see square brackets [ ] around the argument name, this means the argument is optional and you do not have to include it when typing unless you need it. So for the syntax above, you need to include 2 arguments for the SUMIF function when typing it in a worksheet cell formula in order for it to calculate correctly. What argument values can be used are discussed below. Remember functions expect certain things in their argument lists, if you do not put the correct information in the list they will generate an error when run.

- range: This is the row or column that you want evaluated by your condition. If including the sum_range then make sure they match in numbers of rows or columns for simplicity. They do not have to be together on the worksheet next to each other or start and stop in the same positions.
- criteria: This is the
condition that will be used to scan the designated row or
column. It can be in the form of a number, formula, function
or piece of text that defines which cells will be added. The
following relational operators and symbols can be used to
build the condition:
- Less than: <
- Greater than: >
- Less than or equal to: <=
- Greater than or equal to: >=
- Not equal to: <>
- Equal to =
- Concatenation Operator: &
- Wild Card Characters: ? and *

- sum_range (Optional): This the column or row that contains the cells to be added. Their row or column position must match the cell positions used in the range argument (see below). If sum_range is omitted, the cells in range argument are both evaluated by criteria and added if they match criteria.

Since the SUMIF function is a computer program, it runs when you press Enter to enter the formula that contains it. If any of the arguments are wrong, the function will return an error.

When typing the SUMIF function in a worksheet cell formula, you need to replace the argument list with arguments separating each one with a comma (,). Since the SUMIF function adds things it expects numbers to add. Some typical arguments you can use are:

Argument Type | Cell Formula | Example Explanation |

Range References, = | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "=Widget1", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is equal to Widget1 in A1:A10 |

Range References, > | = SUMIF( A1:A10, ">16", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is greater than 16 in A1:A10 |

Range References, < | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "<16", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is less than 16 in A1:A10 |

Range References, >= | = SUMIF( A1:A10, ">=16", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is greater than or equal to 16 in A1:A10 |

Range References, <= | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "<=16", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is less than or equal to 16 in A1:A10 |

Range References, <> | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "<>16", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is not equal to 16 in A1:A10 |

Range References,*txt | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "=*xsx", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what ends with xsx in A1:A10 |

Range References, txt* | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "=ca*", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what begins with ca in A1:A10 |

Range References, *txt* | = SUMIF( A1:A10, "=*91362*", C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what contains 91362 in A1:A10 |

Range References, &, Formula | = SUMIF( A1:A10, ">" & D1+E1, C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is greater than D1+E1 in A1:A10 |

Range References, &, Function | = SUMIF( A1:A10, ">" & SUM( G1:G4 ), C1:C10 ) | Sum all the values in C1:C10 where they match what is greater than the sum of G1:G4 in A1:A10 |

Column References, = | = SUMIF( A:A, "=Widget1", C:C ) | Sum all the values in column C where they match what is equal to Widget1 in column A |

Row References, = | = SUMIF( 1:1, "=Widget1", 3:3 ) | Sum all the values in row 3 where they match what is equal to Widget1 in row 1 |

Range Names | = SUM( Products, "=Widget1", Sales ) | Sum all the values in the range named Sales where they equal Widget1 in the range named Products* |

* It is possible to name a cell or group of cells on a worksheet and use that name in place of a range reference or cell reference. Consult Excel help on how to name a cell.

The worksheet seen below contains some typical worksheet formulas that run the SUMIF worksheet function. Pay close attention to the argument list and the syntax used to write the formula.

A | B | C | |

1 | Product | Quantity | |

2 | A | 100 | |

3 | B | 200 | |

4 | A | 300 | |

5 | B | 400 | |

6 | A | 500 | |

7 | |||

8 | 900 | =SUMIF( A1:A6 , "=A", B1:B6 ) | |

9 | |||

10 | Region | Quantity | |

11 | 1 | 100 | |

12 | 2 | 200 | |

13 | 3 | 300 | |

14 | 4 | 400 | |

15 | 5 | 500 | |

16 | 6 | 600 | |

17 | 7 | 700 | |

18 | 8 | 800 | |

19 | 9 | 900 | |

20 | 10 | 100 | |

21 | |||

22 | 700 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, "=7", B11:B20) | |

23 | 1800 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, ">7", B11:B20) | |

24 | 2100 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, "<7", B11:B20) | |

25 | 2500 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, ">=7", B11:B20) | |

26 | 2800 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, "<=7", B11:B20) | |

27 | 3900 | = SUMIF( A10:A20, "<>7", B11:B20) |

- You can use the wildcard characters, question mark (?) and asterisk (*) in criteria. A question mark matches any single character; an asterisk matches any sequence of characters. If you want to find an actual question mark or asterisk, type a tilde (~) preceding the character.
- As a general rule, when typing a condition, enclose the condition in quotes. For example the condition sum everything equal to widget1 would be constructed as "=Widget1". If you were looking for everything = to 16 or greater than 16 they would be written as "=16" or ">16". There are variations on these rules, slang you can get away with, but quotes " " will always work.
- You can use the & to help construct the condition "on the fly" which means the condition can be determined by formula. For example, ">" & A1+B1 would calculate to be ">3" if A1+B1 added up to 3. This allows the condition to be flexible and not "hard coded" which means static.
- If the condition is a text evaluation, "=Widget1", it is not case sensitive but is space sensitive so "=Widget1" is not the same as "=Widget 1".
- Be sure to clean you data before doing any type of text comparison. Spaces, non-printable characters, extra words should all be removed before using the COUNTIF worksheet function. You can use the CLEAN, SUBSTITUTE and the TRIM worksheet functions for this task
- To analyze data in a list based on criteria, such as profit margins or product types, also use the database and list management functions (DAVERAGE, DCOUNT, DCOUNTA, DGET, DMAX, DMIN, DPRODUCT, DSTDEV, DSTDEVP, DSUM, DVAR, and DVARP).

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