Type an equal sign in a spreadsheet without doing a formula

Updated: 03/06/2020 by Computer Hope
Microsoft Excel

All formulas in spreadsheet programs, like Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice Calc, and Google Sheets start with an equal sign (=). To display an equal sign, but not have it start a formula, you must "escape" the cell by entering a single quote (') at the beginning.

For example, to put the text "=hope" in a cell, type the text below in the cell.


Once complete, the cell only shows "=hope" and hide the single quote.