Let’s take a look. Here we have a simple worksheet that highlights several cell references. Following the instructions in the table, let’s build simple formulas that use addition. The first two examples don’t require any cell references and can be input directly. Always use an equal sign “=” to start off the formula: to add 1 and 5, we enter:  = 1 + 5 to add 23 and 47, we enter:  = 23 + 47 For the next formula, we need to add C9 and D6. We’ll simply type this in directly as = C9 + D6 Next we have H11 plus F7. This time, we’ll point and click to set the cell references. Notice we get a negative value, since the value in H11 is -10. Finally, we need to add together all cell references. We’ll use our mouse to indicate the references. We can check that we entered the references correctly by double-clicking, or by clicking into the formula bar. You could see a VALUE error if any of the cells contain text. Empty or blank cells will not cause an error.  Excel will treat blank cells as “0.”

Dave Bruns

Hi - I’m Dave Bruns, and I run Exceljet with my wife, Lisa. Our goal is to help you work faster in Excel. We create short videos, and clear examples of formulas, functions, pivot tables, conditional formatting, and charts.