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## How To Calculate The Most Improved Sales Area With An Array Formula In Excel

This article will show you how to get the most improved sales in four areas, quickly and easily by using a list formula in Excel.

List formulas are a really powerful tool in your Excel toolbox. An array formula works with an array of data values, or an array of values rather than a single value like a regular formula. Let’s see how this makes life easier with an example.

I have a set of sales data, for four regions and sales people, North, South, East and West as two months of sales data for November 2014 and December 2014. The data should be set as below-

**Column B- Sales Person**

James the Great

Susan Breen

Max Jones

Stephen Parkin

**Column C- Point of sale**

North

South

East

in the West

**Column D-November 2014 Advertising**

€13,415.00

€14,914.00

€10,338.00

€10,224.00

**December 2014 Advertising Column**

€14,915.00

€14,414.00

€12,838.00

€13,624.00

**Column F is the Sales Difference** where we save our original formula

Let’s take a look at which region has improved the most from November to December 2014.

The database settings will be.

If we choose to use the standard formula to find the best selling point we will have to follow the following steps-

1. Calculate the improvement (if any) of each sales area in the server column to the right of the December 2014 sales figures in column F. Then we subtract the December 2014 sales from the November 2014 sales figures.

2.We then need to use the MAX function to get the highest price and therefore the most improved sales. The formula sentence is

=MAX(F8:F11)

We can see that Stephen Parkin has a very improved sales in the Western area. But since it took us two formulas, there is a faster way by using an array formula.

If we were to use a range of formulas, we could use Excel to perform multiple calculations in a single cell for us. We don’t need to store the list of values in Column E as Excel can store this in its memory. This is called an array constant.

So let’s repeat the process with

1. Starting with the MAX function

=MAX(

We then want to replace E3 with E3:E6 and then replace D3 with D3:D6 resulting in a formula that looks like this.

=MAX(E8:E11-D8:D11)

2. To display in Excel this is a list formula we must surround it with curly braces or brackets .

We do this instead of hitting return after the formula is typed hold down CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER.

I always make sure my cursor is on the formula, then hold CTRL+SHIRT and then ENTER until you get the hang of it!

So the MAX function uses the fixed range as an argument and the result is still €3,400.00.

**Extra bonus Excel Tip. **

When working with array formulas, you can view static arrays yourself. Using the same example.

1. Select the cell reference that corresponds to your range in your formula.

2. Hit F9, now you see what Excel sees. Oct all prices make a list

3. The elements in the vertical array constant are separated by semi colons and the horizontal ones are separated by commas, in our example it is definitely a vertical array so it is separated by semi colons.

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