Google Sheets Notifications: How to Turn On, Edit & Remove

Google Sheets is a fantastic spreadsheet tool that provides the premium features of tools like Microsoft Excel for free. Some would say it’s even better than Excel.

On top of that, it makes sharing and collaboration extremely easy to do, allowing you to grant different levels of permissions to people, effectively controlling who can edit your data. Because of this, Google has added a feature that will send you an email when a Google Sheet is updated.

This article discusses the importance of this feature and how you can activate notifications in Google Sheets. Read on to learn more about Google Sheets notifications.

Why Do You Need Google Sheets Notifications?

When working with a large spreadsheet in an office where dozens of people collaborate on the same spreadsheet, it can become hectic to track which change was made, at what time, and by which person.

When we turn on the Google Sheets alerts, we are notified through email every time someone changes the spreadsheet.

Without notifications, we can still check who made the changes.

However, going through the version history manually can be slow, and sometimes, we just want to be notified instantly whenever someone makes a change to the spreadsheet. This is especially true if there’s a risk of someone breaking the formulas or formatting in an important Sheet.

How to Set Up Google Sheets Email Notifications

Enabling email notifications in Google Sheets only requires a few steps, and you can do it in seconds. Here are the steps to do so:

  • Open the spreadsheet you want the notifications for

  • Click on Tools in the top bar of the screen
  • In the dropdown menu, click on Notification rules

  • This will open the Set notification rules window. Here you can customize how you would like to receive the email notification. For demonstration, we want to set up notifications where we are notified with an email right away after any change is made.

  • Click on Save once you have chosen your desired settings.

This configuration will send a Google Sheets notification when your Sheet is edited. If you have multiple people making changes constantly, email notifications may become annoying, so choose the options depending on your needs.

If you’re a team leader, a daily digest is an excellent option to check over all the changes made at once. Alternatively, you could use Gmail tricks to move all the Sheets notifications to their own folder.

Add, Edit, and Remove Google Sheets Notifications

If you change your mind about a specific notification rule or wish to remove it entirely, you don’t have to repeat the whole process. Instead, follow these steps:

  1. Click on Tools at the top and then click on Notification rules.
  2. You will see your previously added rule here. You can Edit or Delete the rule depending on your choice. You can also click on Add another notification rule to add a new rule.
  3. Finally, click on Done to save the changes.

What Do the Notification Rules Options Mean?

Here is what each option means in the notification rules menu:

Any Changes Are Made

When you choose this option, every change made to the spreadsheet is recorded and sent through an email. Google Sheets will either do this instantly or through a daily digest.

A User Submits a Form

This option can notify you anytime a collaborator submits a form. Forms can be associated with the spreadsheet using Google Forms. This can include surveys or an admission form for a university.

Email – Daily Digest

When this option is selected, the list of changes made by a user is sent out at the end of the day or at a specified time. This is great for users who do not want to be notified of the changes instantly or for those who work for a large organization where many changes occur daily in the spreadsheet they are working on. Choosing this option does mean that you will get notifications later than when the changes happen.

Email – Right Away

When you select this option, you will be sent an email every time a change is made to your spreadsheet. This is great for users who work with sensitive data and wish to receive notifications every time a change occurs.

However, suppose you’re working with a large organization where many people contribute to a single spreadsheet at once. This can get more annoying than helpful, as you may start receiving an email every few minutes.

Google Sheets Notifications Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Google Sheets Notification of Changes Emails?

Google Sheets notifications can be extremely handy if you want to be made aware every time a change is made to the spreadsheet. Google Sheets email notifications do this, and you can specify whether you wish to be notified instantly or receive a daily report that shows all the changes made that day.

Can Google Sheets Notify of Changes?

Google Sheets has a built-in feature that notifies you every time a change is made to your spreadsheet. This feature isn’t enabled by default, and you can turn it on by clicking on Tools in the top bar and then on Notification rules. There, click on Add another notification rule and select your desired options. Finally, click on Done to save the rule.

How Do I Turn off Notifications in Google Sheets?

To turn off the notifications, click on Tools > Notification rules. Then click on Delete beside the rule you wish to delete and click on Done.

When You Remove Someone From a Google Sheet, Are They Notified?

When you give someone permission to your Google Sheet, they are sent a notification through email. However, when you remove someone from your Google Sheets spreadsheet, they are not notified. Yet, when they try to access the spreadsheet, Sheets will inform them that they don’t have access to it.

How Do I Remove Myself From a Google Document That Was Shared With Me?

Right-click on the file and select Share from the list to do this. This list shows everyone that has access to that document. Click on the Cross (X) symbol beside your name. This will remove you from the shared group, and you will no longer have access to it if it’s a private file.

Can Google Sheets Send Notifications?

Google Sheets can send email notifications to users whenever a change occurs in the spreadsheet. This can be activated by clicking on Tools and then on Notification rules. That will open a menu where you can set up your Google Sheets notifications.

Wrapping Up the Google Sheets Notification Function

When set up correctly, Google Sheets notifications can be a lifesaver for a lot of us who work with massive spreadsheets that receive dozens of edits per day. Although tracked changes are convenient, notifications are much better in some instances as you don’t have to check for the changes manually. Instead, you are notified through email whenever a change is made.

We hope this article helped clear your understanding of how you can set up email notifications and why they can be helpful for you.

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Jake Wright

Jake Wright

Jake is a spreadsheet expert and content writer from New Zealand. He has a double Bachelor's Degree in Teaching and has been working in the education industry for over 11 years. His experience makes him adept at breaking down complex topics so that everyone is able to understand.