An **absolute reference in Excel** keeps your formula fixed. So, if you copy the formula to another position, nothing will change. Unlike a relative reference, it is pointing to an actual fixed location on a worksheet.

## How to use absolute reference

**The key is the dollar sign: $**. If you want to fix rows or columns insert a dollar sign before the row or column id.

Let us see an example of how the absolute reference works for cell B1:

**=$B$1**

You can apply it for a range (like B6:B8) too:

**=$B$6 : $B$8**

### Example

In the example that appears, the formula in D5 will change like this when copied down column D. You can track the changes in column F easily using the **=FORMULATEXT function**.

Good to know that the absolute reference to C3, which contains the day’s rate, does not change! But the reference to **‘Working Days’** in C5 changes with each new row.

### Steps to to insert a dollar sign and make relative reference to absolute

If you want to add a dollar sign to your cell or range you can use two easy methods:

- Start typing the formula using an equal sign. For example,
**=C5:C10** - After you type a cell reference, press the F4 key once, your reference looks like
**=$C$5: $C$10** - Excel changes the default relative reference to cell to absolute!

**Tip:** you can switch easily between references (relative, mixed, absolute) by pressing F4.

**Example:** The cycle of references (controlled by F4)

Type =C5 and press F4

**once**, the result is =**$**C**$**5**twice**, the result is = C**$**5**three-times**, the result is =**$**C5**four-times**, the result is the default, =C5

**Additional resources:**