# How To Change A Formula To A Value In Excel Excel Tip – Calculating A Rolling Or Moving Average Using The OFFSET Function

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## Excel Tip – Calculating A Rolling Or Moving Average Using The OFFSET Function

Calculating moving averages can be a very useful way to look at trends in your data, and we can easily set up a formula in Excel to always look at the last 3 or 6 months or any number of months in your data.

They are one of the most used and popular indicators. The best place to start is to understand the most basic type of trend, the simple moving average (SMA). No matter how long or low the moving average you are looking to draw and track, the basic calculations remain the same over and over again.

Let’s look at an example. I want to know the average sales of my Beanie Hats for the last 3 months…always within the last 3 months, even if my new monthly sales data is added to my spreadsheet.

I entered the number of months to use for the moving average in cell G6. (This way I can easily change the number of months I want to look at in my formula – maybe at some point I want to look at 6 months or 9 months). The formula for G5 (where I want the result of my formula to appear) is:

=AVERAGE(OFFSET(C7,LIST(C:C)-G6,0,G6))

Date Volumes

June-14 50

July-14 65

14 August 35

14 September 87

14 October 99

14 November 89

December-14.150

January 15, 250

February 15, 257

March 15, 146

April 15-150

My dates are in column B and my values ​​are in column C starting at row 7.

Let’s break it down and see what Excel does.

First, the OFFSET function in Excel returns a range, and we want it to always be the last 3 (or however much is specified in our G6 cell). OFFSET uses the following arguments −

reference, rows, columns, height, width

So we tell the OFFSET function to create a new range that starts 7 cells below C4 (the first volume cell) and continues 3 cells down. How does it know to run 7 cells down?

By specifying COUNT(C:C)-G6 as a reference, COUNT(C:C) returns the number of cells in column C that contain numbers. in this case 10. Subtract the 3 since we only want the last 3.

Then…

Wrap it all in the AVERAGE function. Now we have a moving average automatically calculated by Excel, we can simply change the number of months by changing the value in cell G6.

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