How to format Google Sheets data for Google Data Studio

Before you upload data from Google Sheets to Google data studio, you need to make sure two things:

  • You pulled data correctly into Google Sheets. 
  • The data you pulled into Google Sheets is in the correct format.

Because this is going to affect your data visualization and data analysis in data studio. 

If you feed garbage to data studio then you are going to get garbage. Garbage in, garbage out.

 

Following is an example of incorrectly formatted data table in Google Sheets:

 

The data table is not formatted correctly because of the following reasons:

#1 It has got empty row at the very top and in the middle of the data table:

#2 It has got empty column:

#3 The data table contains totals:

There should not be an subtotals or grand-totals in your data table.

 

#4 The column headers are missing:

Note: Each column must have header and these headers must be meaningful, unique and self-explanatory.

 

#5 The data in the data table is not using correct data types. 

So for example, the field ‘Order Date’ is not of type ‘date’. And some of the dates are not even valid like 27/1/2019. 

That is because American date format begins with the month and ends with the year (MM/DD/YYYY). 

In most of the rest of the world (including the UK), the day is written first and the year last (DD/MM/YYYY). 

So you need to make sure that all of your dates begins with the month and ends with the year (MM/DD/YYYY). 

For Google data studio, you would need to format your dates in the (YYYY-MM-DD) format. So the year is written first and the day last. 

 

To do that follow the steps below:

Step-1: Select all of your dates data:

Step-2: Navigate to Format Menu > Number > More Formats > More Date and Time Formats:

Step-3: Select year-month-day format and then click on the ‘Apply’ button:

As soon as you clicked on the ‘Apply’ button, all of your dates will automatically be converted into this new format which Google Data Studio understand:

The correct way to format your data fields is by selecting all the data in your field and making sure it is of the correct data type from the ‘Format’ menu.

 

So Number data should be of type ‘number’:

Text data should be of type ‘Plain text’:

Currency data should be of the type currency. 

So for example, if your currency is US dollars then all currency data should be displayed in US dollars (and not as numbers):

Following is an example of a correctly formatted data table:

Note (1): Make sure that your data table starts from cell A1, right in the top upper left.

Note (2): Don’t add extraneous data in the same worksheet like adding notes or adding other tables, charts etc. 

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