How to filter Google Sheets without affecting other users

Get a selection of expert articles

One of the reasons why spreadsheets are used as a collaborative tool is their information storage capacity. The downside to working with large amounts of data is it can become time-consuming to find specific information. Luckily, Google Sheets has easy-to-use filters in the app to make this process more efficient. However, since more users will be working with the same information, it is crucial to establish a filtering system that aids, and not hinders, their experience. By the end of this article, you will know how to filter information in Google Sheets. What’s more, you can explore how you can filter your Google Sheets without affecting other users through the Sheetgo web app.

How to filter your Google Sheets

There are two main ways you can filter data directly in Google Sheets: direct filters and filter view.

1. How to apply the direct filter to a Google Sheet

This is perhaps the most straightforward way to filter data. This feature is useful for any scenario in which you want a group of users to see the same filtered information as you. Imagine that I am the head of an IT department and I have a database in Google Sheets of all past and future projects.

google sheets filter view

I want to share the monthly assignments with my team. In order to do this, I can apply a direct filter to show the tasks that belong to the upcoming month.

First, click on the funnel icon located on the far right of the toolbar. You should see a filter sign appear at the top of each column. Click this sign in your desired column – in my example, column E. A dropdown menu should appear.

google sheets filter view 1

Now, clear your filters to start fresh. Simply expand the Filter by values section and click Clear. Now it’s time to customize your filters. Click on the values that you wish to filter your data by. In this example, I want to filter my data according to the tasks due in May.

Once finished, click OK.

google sheets filter view 2

As you can see below, your team will now only see the task information relating to the month of May.

google sheets filter view 3

As previously mentioned, this filtering method is suitable for those cases in which you want everyone to see the same filtered data. However, what if you want different users to be able to view different data? Or what if you want to share different filters with different people? The Google Sheets filter view feature is the best option to use for these reasons.

More importantly, you may also need to use these customized filters in the future. This is where Google Sheets filter view option comes in handy.

2. How to apply the filter view to a Google Sheets

Imagine that you want the spreadsheet to keep all data visible and unfiltered and leave this for each users’ convenience. The filter view allows users to work on the same spreadsheet without affecting what the others see. What’s more, you can save custom filters to use again in the future. Let’s take a look at how to create a filter view.

Firstly, remove the filters from your columns. Do this by simply clicking the filter icon at the top of your column, expand the Filter by values section and click Select all. All of your data should reappear. To add a filter view, click on the arrow next to the funnel icon (not the funnel icon as before) and select Create new filter view from the drop-down menu.

google sheets filter view 4

You might get a message reminding you that only your view has changed. You can dismiss the message and proceed to rename the filter Filter 1 to suit your needs.

Let’s say I now want to view the tasks due in June. In this example, I’ll rename it “June tasks.” Then, apply the filter conditions of your choice. I have applied filters to show only the June tasks.

google sheets filter view 5

Remember that when you apply filter conditions with filter view, it is only your view that has been modified and won’t affect what the rest of your team sees. If you want to edit, duplicate or delete the filter view you have created, click the settings icon on the right-hand of your spreadsheet and select your desired action.

How to reset the filter view on Google Sheets

If you want to reset or remove the filter view conditions to your Google Sheet, simply click the close button (X) located next to the Settings icon on the top right of the spreadsheet.

google sheets filter view 6

In case you need to apply the same filter in the future, select the customized filter from the drop-down menu, next to the funnel icon. As you can see, the recently customized filter, “June tasks” now appears on the list.

google sheets filter view 7

With the Google Sheet filter view, you can have as many filter views as needed, according to task or user requirements. If you give access to a coworker or client, you can directly choose the data that will be viewed and made accessible to them. Even though others may be working on that same Google sheet, you will not affect their view at the time.

Please note:

  • In order to edit or create filter views in Google Sheets, you require permission to do so. Nonetheless, even a “View only” access grants users viewing and applying filter views.
  • This feature is not enabled for phone or tablet devices.

How to filter your Google Sheets without affecting other users

What if you want other users to edit simultaneously without affecting the data for other users? Google Sheets currently lacks a built-in feature that allows you to edit filtered data without affecting the rest of the team that is working on that same spreadsheet. Luckily, Sheetgo offers a solution for this.

Filter data to other spreadsheets in Sheetgo

You can send specific data from one spreadsheet to another using the Filter process in the Sheetgo web app. Let’s say I want to send all of the June projects to my coworker Valentine.

My current spreadsheet has hundreds upon hundreds of rows of different tasks dating from the beginning to the end of 2021. Using the Sheetgo web app, I can send the tasks specific to Valentine into her own personal task spreadsheet, where she has everything located in one place. What’s more, now that she has access to her own personal spreadsheet with her specific tasks, she can update her own data. For example, changing her task statuses from “in progress” to “complete”.

Here are just some of the additional benefits of using Sheetgo to filter your Google Sheets:

  • Save time and boost productivity: Save huge amounts of time by automating your entire process from start to finish, so that you can focus on more important tasks at hand.
  • Effectively manage your data: Maintain complete control over your spreadsheet data – choose how to connect, transfer and share important information.
  • Customize your connections: Customize your connections to suit you and your coworker’s needs.
google sheets filter view 8
By creating another Sheetgo connection, you can merge this filtered data in these personal spreadsheets back into your main database. For example, I can link Valentine’s spreadsheet back to mine in order to receive the latest insights on task progress. You can use this data to create a live dashboard to report from, too!

To read more about the Sheetgo filter feature and discover a step-by-step guide on how to use it, take a look at our article on how to Filter Google Sheets from one sheet to the other.

Filter data in a spreadsheet

And there you have it! Google Sheets offers two ways for you to filter your data: direct filters, and filter views. However, to achieve the full potential of online collaboration, Sheetgo allows you to filter, connect and transfer the data within a Google Sheet, without affecting the data of other users. As a result, you can optimize your spreadsheet data to the advantage of each of your collaborators.

To learn more about how to make the most of the Sheetgo filters, take a look at the Filter support page.

Alternatively, check out our related blog posts below!

Ready to streamline your spreadsheet data?

You may also like…