If you're new to Excel, you may be wondering what an absolute reference is and how to use it in a formula. An absolute reference is a cell reference that doesn't change when you copy or move a formula. This is in contrast to a relative reference, which does change. For example, if you have a formula in cell A1 that references cell B1, and you copy that formula down to cell A2, the reference in the copied formula will change from B1 to B2. This is because the reference is relative to the position of the formula. An absolute reference, on the other hand, would remain as B1, even when copied to cell A2.
You can use absolute references in your formulas to make sure that certain cell references don't change. This can be useful if you're referencing a cell that contains data that shouldn't change, like a tax rate, or if you want to make sure a formula always references the same cell, even if it's copied to a different location.
To create an absolute reference in a formula, you use the dollar sign ($) before the column letter and row number of the cell you want to reference. For example, the absolute reference for cell B1 would be $B$1. You can also use the dollar signs to make an entire reference absolute, like this: $A$1:$B$2. This would make both the column and row absolute, so the reference would always point to cells A1 and B2, even if the formula was copied elsewhere.
You can also use mixed references, which are a mix of absolute and relative references. For example, if you wanted to make the column absolute but the row relative, you would use a reference like this: $A1. This would make the column A absolute, but the row 1 relative, so the reference would always point to column A, but the row would change depending on where the formula was copied.
Now that you know what an absolute reference is, let's take a look at how to use one in a formula. We'll use the same example as before, with a formula in cell A1 that references cell B1. But this time, we'll make the reference to cell B1 absolute, so it doesn't change when the formula is copied.
The formula in cell A1 is =B1*2. If we make the reference to cell B1 absolute, it will look like this: =$B$1*2. Now, no matter where we copy this formula, the reference to cell B1 will stay the same. So if cell B1 contains the number 3, the formula will always return 6, no matter where it's copied in the sheet.
You can use absolute references in any type of formula, not just multiplication. Any time you need to make sure a cell reference doesn't change, you can use an absolute reference. Just remember to use the dollar signs to make the reference absolute.