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Google Sheets

Check for Duplicates in Google Sheets: A Step-by-Step Guide

Identifying and managing duplicates in Google Sheets is essential for maintaining data accuracy and integrity. In this step-by-step guide, we'll explore various methods to seamlessly check for duplicates, enabling you to ensure clean and reliable data in your spreadsheet.

Recognizing the Importance of Duplicate Checking

Checking for duplicates helps prevent errors and inconsistencies in your data. Mastering the techniques for identifying duplicates in Google Sheets is crucial for effective data validation and organization.

Method 1: Using Conditional Formatting for Duplicate Highlighting

Learn the foundational method of using Conditional Formatting to highlight duplicates in Google Sheets. Understand how to select the range with the data, navigate to "Format" in the toolbar, choose "Conditional formatting," and set up rules to highlight duplicate values, providing a visual cue for identification.

Method 2: Utilizing the "COUNTIF" Function to Identify Duplicates

Explore using the "COUNTIF" function to identify duplicates in Google Sheets. Learn how to create a formula that counts the occurrences of each value and flags duplicates, allowing for a dynamic method to spot duplicate entries in your data.

Method 3: Using the "UNIQUE" Function to Extract Unique Values

Dive into using the "UNIQUE" function to extract unique values and identify duplicates indirectly. Understand how to create a formula that displays only unique values, making it easier to spot duplicates among the remaining entries.

Method 4: Conditional Formatting for Duplicate Removal

Understand how to use Conditional Formatting not only for highlighting but also for removing duplicates. Learn how to set up rules to highlight duplicates, filter them, and then delete or manage the duplicate entries based on your preferences.

Method 5: Advanced Duplicate Checking with Google Apps Script

Explore advanced duplicate checking using Google Apps Script. Learn how to use scripts to automate the identification and management of duplicates based on specific criteria or conditions, providing a powerful tool for customizing your duplicate checking process.


In conclusion, checking for duplicates in Google Sheets is a fundamental practice for maintaining data accuracy and integrity. Whether you're using Conditional Formatting for highlighting, employing functions like "COUNTIF" and "UNIQUE" for identification, leveraging advanced filtering for removal, or utilizing Google Apps Script for automation, the methods outlined in this guide provide a comprehensive toolkit for duplicate checking. By incorporating these techniques into your data validation workflow, you'll ensure a clean and reliable dataset in your Google Sheets.