Sort Multiple Rows Horizontally in Excel & Google Sheets

Written by

Editorial Team

Reviewed by

Laura Tsitlidze

Last updated on February 28, 2023

This tutorial demonstrates how to sort multiple rows horizontally in Excel and Google Sheets.


sort multiple rows horizontally 4


Sort Row Horizontally

Excel’s sort feature is used to sort data in columns, but you can also use it to sort rows horizontally. Say you have the following data set.


sort multiple rows horizontally initial data


Typically, Excel tables are set up with field names in each column and rows of data underneath. In this example, each row has a field name and columns of data to the right. Row 2 has names, Row 3 has month-to-date sales for each person in Row 2, and Row 4 has year-to-date sales. Let’s first sort data horizontally by MTD Sales from largest to smallest (Row 3).

  1. Click anywhere in the data range (A3:G3), and in the Ribbon, go to Home > Sort & Filter > Custom Sort


sort single row horizontally 1


  1. In the Sort window, click Options…


sort single row horizontally 2a


  1. In the Sort Options pop-up, choose Sort left to right – i.e., horizontally – and click OK.


sort single row horizontally 4


  1. In the Sort window, sort by Row 3 on Cell Values, in Largest to Smallest order. Click OK.


sort single row horizontally 4a


As a result, the data set is sorted by Row 3 (MTD Sales), descending.


sort single row horizontally final data


There a few duplicates in MTD Sales that become apparent after the sort – for John and Celine ($1,280) and for Jennifer and Sarah ($750). If you need additional sort criteria, read on.

Sort Multiple Rows

To sort more specifically than just MTD Sales, add one more level of sorting – YTD Sales (Row 4). In this case, sort first by MTD Sales and then by YTD Sales, from largest to smallest.

  1. Select the sort range (B3:G4), and in the Ribbon, go to Home > Sort & Filter > Custom Sort.


sort multiple rows horizontally


  1. In the Sort window, click Add Level to add Row 4 to the sort conditions.


sort multiple rows horizontally 2


  1. In the second level, choose Row 4 for Then by and Largest to Smallest for Order. Click OK.


sort multiple rows horizontally 3


As a result, the data range is sorted first by MTD Sales, and then by YTD Sales.


sort multiple rows horizontally 4


Sort Rows Horizontally in Google Sheets

Google Sheets doesn’t have the same option as Excel to sort left to right, but it is possible to achieve the same using a combination of the SORT and TRANSPOSE Functions. The idea is to transpose data from horizontal to vertical, then sort data, and transpose it back to horizontal. Enter the formula in cell A6:



google sheets sort single row horizontally transpose


As a result, the data range is transposed below, with MTD Sales sorted descending. Let’s look deeper into the formula:

First, it transposes the range A2:G4 to vertical, to be able to sort it. Then, it sorts that range descending (FALSE) by the second column (2MTD Sales). Finally, it transposes the sorted range back to horizontal.

Multiple Rows

You can also sort more than one row horizontally. The only difference is that you need to include YTD Sales in the SORT Function. In this case, the formula in cell A6 is:



google sheets sort multiple rows horizontally transpose


The only difference compared to the single row sort is another two parameters in the SORT Function. Column 3 (YTD Sales) is added as a second descending sort criteria.

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