How to Do If Then in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Excel is a powerful tool that can help you make decisions based on certain conditions. By using the “IF” function, you can create formulas that perform different actions depending on whether a specified condition is true or false. In this article, we’ll walk you through how to use the “IF” function to create “if then” statements in Excel.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Do If Then in Excel

Before we dive into the steps, let’s understand what we’re aiming to achieve. The “IF” function in Excel allows us to set up conditions and specify what should happen if those conditions are met or not. For example, you could tell Excel to check if a sales number is above a certain amount, and then to calculate a bonus if it is. Let’s get into it!

Step 1: Select the Cell Where You Want the Result to Appear

Click on the cell where you want the result of your “if then” statement to be displayed.

Selecting the right cell is crucial because it will display the outcome of your “if then” statement. This could be a number, text, or even another formula.

Step 2: Type “=IF(” to Start Your Formula

Begin your formula with “=IF(” without the quotation marks.

This is the start of your “if then” statement. The “IF” function always starts with an equal sign, followed by the function name and an opening parenthesis.

Step 3: Specify the Condition

After the opening parenthesis, type the condition you want to test.

The condition is an expression that can be either true or false. For example, you could check if the value in another cell is greater than 100.

Step 4: Enter the Value if the Condition is True

After the condition, type a comma, and then enter the value you want to be returned if the condition is true.

This is the “then” part of the statement. It tells Excel what to do if the condition you specified is met.

Step 5: Enter the Value if the Condition is False

Type another comma, and then enter the value you want to be returned if the condition is false.

This part of the formula is also known as the “else” statement. It specifies what Excel should return if the condition is not met.

Step 6: Close the Formula

Finish the formula with a closing parenthesis and press Enter.

Closing the parenthesis is important as it tells Excel that you’ve finished your “if then” statement. Once you press Enter, Excel will calculate the result.

After completing these steps, Excel will display the result of your “if then” statement in the cell you selected. If the condition you specified is true, it will show the value you entered for that scenario. If it’s false, it will display the alternative value you provided.

Tips for If Then in Excel

  • Always start your “IF” function with an equal sign.
  • Make sure your condition is clear and accurate to avoid unexpected results.
  • Use quotation marks around text values in your “if then” statements.
  • Test your “if then” statements with different scenarios to ensure they work correctly.
  • Remember that Excel functions are not case sensitive, so “IF” and “if” will work the same way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use more than one condition in an “if then” statement in Excel?

Yes, you can use the “AND” or “OR” functions within your “IF” function to test multiple conditions.

What happens if I forget to close the parenthesis in my “if then” statement?

Excel will either give you an error message or try to auto-correct the formula for you.

Can I use cell references in my “if then” statements?

Absolutely! Using cell references allows your “if then” statements to be dynamic and adjust when the referenced cell’s value changes.

Is it possible to nest “if then” statements in Excel?

Yes, you can nest multiple “IF” functions inside each other to test more complex conditions.

What kind of values can I use in the “then” and “else” parts of the statement?

You can use numbers, text, or other Excel functions as the return values in your “if then” statements.


  1. Select the Cell
  2. Begin the Formula
  3. Specify the Condition
  4. Value if True
  5. Value if False
  6. Close the Formula


Mastering the “if then” function in Excel can significantly enhance your data analysis and decision-making skills. Whether you’re calculating bonuses, assigning grades, or determining eligibility, the “IF” function is a versatile tool that you’ll find yourself using time and time again. As with any Excel function, practice makes perfect. So, don’t be afraid to experiment with different conditions and scenarios. Remember, the more you play around with Excel, the more efficient and effective your spreadsheets will become. Now that you know how to do if then in Excel, what will you create?

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