How to use the green triangle
The green triangle in Excel, though unpleasant to the eyes, is there to help you out. It identifies the error (or the potential error) you might be doing.
Let me show you how you can use the green triangle to your good💡
How to convert numbers to text with a green triangle
One main reason why you’d see the green triangle there on a cell is that it is stored as text.
Like here. You’d see a number in there, but if you take a look into its format, it’d be Text or General🔎
Through a green triangle, Excel not only intimates you of the ‘error type’ but also allows you to rectify it.
- Click on the cell.
- Click on the yellow icon that appears next to it.
Excel proposes an option to remove the error by converting it into a number.
- Click on the option ‘Convert to Number’.
Excel converts the text format of the number in the cell to number format.
The error has been removed and worked out, and the green triangle has also gone away. That is one way how you can use the green triangle to get rid of errors😎
Omitted Adjacent Cells
Here we have the sales for three months for three different products.
If we add all of the sales for each product up, here’s what we get.
But hold on! One of these answers has a green triangle to them🧐
Click on the cell to know why a green triangle to it is there.
Excel tells it as “Formula omits adjacent cells”. Maybe we have made a mistake in writing the SUM function.
Let’s check the SUM function applied to this cell🔎
And that’s right, the SUM function for Product X only sums up cells B2 and C2 (it skips out Cell D2).
Whereas, for Product Y and Z, the SUM function sums up cells B3 to D3🤷♀️
To resolve this error:
- Click on the cell.
- Click on the option Update Formula to Include Cells.
Doing this, we have told Excel to update the formula for Product X from SUM(B2:C2) to SUM(B2:D2)😍
The formula’s updated, and the cell no more has a green triangle to it.
This is another way how you can use the green triangle to get rid of formula errors in Excel.
Error in Cell
The cell below shows the #NAME error along with a green triangle to the top.
What’s causing this error?
- Click on the cell > Click on the yellow icon that appears next to it.
- Click on the option ‘Show Calculation Steps’👀
- From the dialogue box that opens up, click on Evaluate.
The name of the function is replaced by the #NAME error. This tells us that we have made a spelling error in the name of the function.
Yes, that’s right. We have misspelled the SUM function as the SIM function🤦♀️
Let’s correct it to see the results below.
No more errors! And no more green triangles💪
Using the green triangle, you can also identify, evaluate and remove what’s causing errors in your formulas.