How to Unsort in Google Sheets

Google Sheets is a powerful tool for organizing and analyzing data. Sorting data in Google Sheets is easy, but what if you need to restore the original order of your data? In this tutorial, we will show you how to unsort in Google Sheets using two different methods.

First, let’s look at the easiest method of unsorting in Google Sheets. We will use a list of names and addresses as an example. To sort the data, click on a row and right-click to open the menu. Select the “Sort sheet A to Z” option to sort the names in alphabetical order.

Now, to unsort the data, simply click the back button (the arrow button) to go back to the initial state. Alternatively, you can use the keyboard shortcut “Command + Z” on Mac or “Control + Z” on PC to undo the sorting. However, this method has its disadvantages, as it only works within the same session and may undo changes you want to keep.

To avoid these drawbacks, we recommend using an index column. An index column is a column that assigns a unique number to each row of data. Here’s how to create an index column in Google Sheets:

1. Select the column you want to insert the index column to (In our example, column A).

2. Right-click on the column and select “Insert 1 left” to add a new column to the left.

3. Name the new column “Index”.

4. Type “1” in the first cell of the index column.

5. Double-click on the blue square button in the bottom right corner of the cell to fill the rest of the cells with consecutive numbers.

Now that we have an index column, we can use it to unsort the data. Let’s sort the data by the first name again. Click on the column and select “Sort sheet A to Z” option. As you can see, the index column now shows random numbers, indicating that the data is no longer sorted.

To unsort the data, select the index column, right-click, and select “Sort sheet A to Z” again. This will restore the original order of the data.

Using an index column to unsort in Google Sheets is more reliable than using the back button or keyboard shortcut. It also works across sessions, making it easier to undo sorting at a later time.

In conclusion, unsorting in Google Sheets is an essential skill for anyone who works with data. Whether you use the back button, keyboard shortcut, or an index column, make sure to choose the method that works best for your needs.