How to Divide in Excel: Division Formula and Examples (2024)

If Microsoft Excel can do complex calculations and analysis, then performing simple calculations like division is as easy as pie 😎

Though you can let Excel do the math for you, you must understand how to divide numbers in Excel so you can work more accurately and efficiently 👨‍🏫

In this article, you’ll learn different methods of how to divide in Excel and some useful tips about dividing in Excel along the way.

Let’s dive in! 😀

Division in Excel

There is no DIVIDE function in Excel.

So when you want to divide numbers in Excel, use the forward slash (/) arithmetic operator.

To divide two numbers in Excel, you need to follow the division formula =a/b where:

• a – the dividend, the number you want to divide
• b – the divisor, the number you want the dividend to be divided by

It’s important to note that you need to first type the equal sign (=) in the cell before you type the numbers and the forward-slash (/) arithmetic operator.

If you don’t, Excel will interpret what you type as a date.

Say you want to divide 10 by 2, to do that…

1. Double-click an empty cell.
2. Type the formula =10/2 in the cell or in the formula bar.
1. Press Enter.

Excel displays 5 as the quotient.

Here are other examples of how to do simple division formula in Excel 😊

What’s amazing in Excel is that you can use cell references in the division formula instead of typing numbers directly.

How to divide cells in Excel (using references)

As you know, you can input values in the cells of your worksheet.

So when you divide in Excel, you can just click the cell that contains the numbers you want to divide and divide by 😀

For example, if you want to divide 10 by 2, you can click the cell references that contain these numbers.

You can find the cell reference in the name box found to the left of the formula bar.

Let’s try it 💪

Let’s divide 10 by 2 again but this time using cell references.

1. Double-click an empty cell and type the equal sign (=) to start the formula.
1. Instead of typing 10, click the cell reference which has a cell value of 10.

In our example, it’s cell B3.

Then type the forward slash (/) arithmetic operator.

1. Next, instead of typing 2, click the cell reference which has a cell value of 2.

In our example, it’s cell B5.

1. Press Enter.

Excel shows you the quotient of the formula which is 5 👍

Below are other examples of how to divide in Excel using cell references.

If you divide a number by 0 or select an empty cell reference, Excel displays the #DIV/0! error.

So, make sure you click the cell references correctly when you divide numbers.

With the use of cell references, you’re not typing numbers directly in the cell.

This is super helpful especially when you have data already entered into the cells of the worksheet.

Easy, right? 😊

Order of operations

When performing arithmetic operations in Excel, it’s important for you to recall and understand the order of operations.

Without understanding the order of operations, the results may not what you expect 🤔

The order in which Excel performs operations in formulas is PEMDAS.

PEMDAS stands for Parentheses, Exponents, Multiplication or Division (whichever comes first), Addition or Subtraction (whichever comes first).

For example, in the Excel formula =10/2+3, you need to perform two arithmetic operations: division and addition 👨‍🏫

Following the PEMDAS, you need to perform first the division and then addition.

So Excel divides 10 by 2 first and then adds 3.

Excel displays 8 as the result.

The table below shows more examples of how the order of operations can impact division formulas.

PROTIP:

You can also use the QUOTIENT function in Excel. The quotient returns only the integer portion of a division and discards the remainder.

The QUOTIENT function has the syntax: =QUOTIENT(numerator,denominator)

Where:

• Numerator (required) – the dividend, the number you want to divide
• Denominator (required) – the divisor, the number you want the dividend to be divided by

You can see the difference between the simple formula for division and the QUOTIENT function in the table below 😊

As you can see, the QUOTIENT function only returns the integer portion of a division and discards the remainder.

So, Excel displays 3.

That’s it – Now what?

You got it! 👏

Though dividing is such a basic operation, it’s important that you understand how division works in Excel.

Now, you can confidently perform basic Excel formulas and functions in Excel 😀

Excel formulas and functions are what make Microsoft Excel a powerful spreadsheet program. It’s also the most used, that’s why Excel skills are in high demand 🚀

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Other resources

When using cell references in your Excel formulas, it’s important to know the difference between absolute, mixed, and relative cell references.