In this tutorial, I am going to show you different types of cell reference that exist in Microsoft Excel. While working with Excel formulas or functions, we often need to use the value of one cell for another cell. We can use the value of one cell in another in multiple ways. In this blog post, you are going to learn about how to use one cell value for another one and also how Excel gives us different ways to achieve this.

**Table of Contents**Expand

## What Is Cell Reference in Excel?

Cell Reference refers to the usage of one cell value or property to a different cell while performing various operations in Excel.

For example, we want to see the differences between two values located at cell **C5** and **D5** respectively. To do so, we need to keep the result in another cell. Letâ€™s call it **E5**. So, all we need to do is, type **=C5-D5** within cell **E5**. So, we are using the values of cells **C5** and **D5** within cell **E5**. We call this phenomenon of using one cell value for another Cell Reference.

**Read More:** How to Display Text from Another Cell in Excel

## How to Make Different Types of Cell Reference in Excel: 3 Examples

There are **3** types of cell references in Excel. Those are:

**Relative Cell References****Absolute Cell References****Mixed Cell References**

### 1. Using Relative Cell Reference

These types are the **default** type of cell reference in Excel. Both the column and row numbers can be varied in this particular type of cell reference. We will calculate the monthly savings in this section to demonstrate the usage of a relative cell reference. Hereâ€™s how to use this particular type in Excel:

Here,

`Savings = Net Salary - Expenditure`

- Select
**E5**to locate the result value. - Type:
`=C5-D5`

- Press
**ENTER**.

Now you will get the monthly savings for George.

While calculating the monthly savings for **George**, weâ€™ve retrieved the values of cells **C5** and **D5**. If you drag down the **Fill Handle** to the end of the table, you will get the savings for the rest of them.

The cell addresses continue to vary sequentially as we go down. This means that cell addresses can be varied either by the column number or the row number. Thus, this type of cell reference is called **Relative Cell Reference**.

**Read More:** How to Use Cell References in Excel Formula

### 2. Applying Absolute Cell Reference

**Absolute Cell Reference** is a particular type of cell reference where the cell address of a particular cell is locked up and its value doesnâ€™t change regardless of the cell location. **Dollar Sign ($)** is used before the column and row number of a cell address to lock it up.

In this section, we will try to calculate the** Net Salary** which can be done as follows:

`Net Salary = Gross Salary - (Gross Salary*Income Tax) + Bonus`

Here, the Bonus remains the same for all employees. So, we will lock up this cell. To do so, weâ€™ve used **Dollar Sign ($)** before the column number as well as the row number. Which is **$E$5**.

**Read More:** Difference Between Absolute and Relative Reference in Excel

### 3. Implementing Mixed Cell Reference

Mixed Cell Reference is a combination of both relative as well as absolute cell references. In this case, either column or row; one of them will be absolute and the other will be relative.

For this instance, the formula to calculate the Net Salary is:

`Net Salary = Gross Salary - (Gross Salary*Income Tax) + Bonus`

Which in terms of a cell address is:

`=C5-(C5*$D5)+$E$5`

Here the address of the **Income Tax** column is written as **$D5**. Where the Dollar Sign ($) is put only before the column value i.e. **$D** which locks up the column value means it is absolute now. But thereâ€™s no such sign before **5** which means itâ€™s still relative. Thus, the combination of both the absolute and relative cell references makes this cell reference a **Mixed Cell Reference**.

## Wrapping Things Up

**Relative Cell Reference:**No Dollar Sign ($) e.g.**D5****Absolute Cell Reference:**Two Dollar Signs ($) e.g.**$D$5****Mixed Cell Reference:**One Dollar Sign ($) e.g.**$D5**or**D$5**

**Download Practice Workbook**

In this practice workbook, we tried to calculate the monthly savings of 10 employees. Using this workbook, weâ€™ve tried to demonstrate different types of cell references in Excel. We recommended you download this workbook and practice along with it.

## Conclusion

I hope that you were able to understand properly the different types of cell reference in** Excel** that we discussed above. Cell Reference is a vital feature that we use extensively in Excel either with formulas or functions or charts or various other commands. So, the conception regarding different types of cell references in Excel is a must to understand. Special care should be taken care of while using any of these reference types to avoid errors.

## Further Readings

- How to Keep a Cell Fixed in Excel FormulaÂ
- How to Hard Code in ExcelÂ
- Relative and Absolute Cell Address in the Spreadsheet
- Cell Reference in Excel VBA
- Excel VBA: R1C1 Formula with Variable

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