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Build a Heat Map in Google Sheets

In this article, you will learn how to build a heat map in Google Sheets that looks like this!

What is a Heat Map?

A heat map is a data visualization technique that shows magnitude through color. And what does that mean?

It simply means that the color helps the reader quickly identify large and small values at a distance based on the hue or intensity of the color.

Why Are Heat Maps Helpful?

Heat maps help the reader see the overall picture of the data. In other words, it makes it easier for the reader to quickly identify the large and small values at a glance without having to scan through the data and read each number.

On top of that, heat maps help draw the reader’s attention to specific spots in the data that require the most attention.

How to Create a Heat Map

To create a heat map in Google Sheets, follow the five steps below.

  1. Select the data
  2. Go to Format Conditional Formatting
  3. Select Color scale
  4. Pick your color scheme under Preview
  5. Click on Done

Once you pick your color scheme, Google Sheets creates the heat map. Here are the steps again with a little more detail.

Highlight the Data

The first step is to select the data that will make up your heat map.

Select Conditional Formatting

With your data selected, go to Format Conditional Formatting in the Google Sheets menus.

Select Color Scale

In the conditional format rules panel on the right side of your spreadsheet, select Color Scale.

Pick Your Color Scheme

Finally, under Preview, pick the color scheme you want to make up your heat map. You have several different options. Simply select the option that works best for you.

Once you have selected the color scheme, click Done to create the heat map.

And that’s how to create a heat map in Google Sheets! If you have any questions or any other thoughts, feel free to leave a comment down below.

Also, if you want to know how to build a heat map in Excel instead, check out the article below.

Build a Heat Map in Excel

See It In Action

To see this whole process from start to finish, check out this video!

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