MIN Function – Google Sheets

The MIN function in Google Sheets identifies the lowest value within a range of cells or individual values.

MIN Function

Each value argument must be a cell, a number, or a range containing numbers. This function ignores any text or boolean values. Use the MINA function to consider text and boolean values.

Make a copy of this Google Sheet with the examples to follow along.


This function follows a simple structure:

=MIN(value1, [value2, ...])

  • value1: This is the first number or range of cells to analyze.
  • value2, ...: [Optional] Any additional numbers or ranges.

Similar Function

MAX – Find the highest value within a range of cells or individual values


MIN Function with Numbers

As shown in the image below, imagine you have sales amounts in column B (B2:B4). To find the lowest amount, use the following formula:

The MIN function finding the smallest number
MIN Function with Only Numbers

Formula used: =MIN(B2:B4)

This function returns $2.54, the lowest Sales amount among all the Sales Reps.

MIN Function with Numbers and Text

Next, let’s see what happens with non-numbers mixed into your data.

The MIN function ignoring text
Ignoring Text

Formula used: =MIN(B2:B4)
This formula will display the minimum Price entered as a number value. Even though the value in B3 represents $9, the function skips it since it is a text value.

Using the MIN Function with Negative Values

Suppose you have negative percentage values representing three tax rates (B2:B4). You may be tempted to use the MIN function to find the lowest rate.

Negative numbers with the MIN function
Negative Inputs

Formula Used: =MIN(B2:B4)

As you can see in the image, be careful when using this function with negative numbers. Since the numbers are negative, the number furthest from zero will be the smallest. Consider using the MAX function instead to get the smallest number.

Finding the Earliest Date with the MIN Function

Since this function primarily works with numbers, it can handle dates well. If your data includes dates in column B (B2:B5), you can find the earliest date (which is the minimum date value) using:


Finding the earliest date with the MIN function
MINA with Dates

Dates work like numbers, and each day is one more than the next. Therefore, the earliest date is also the smallest number as far as this function is concerned.

Google Sheet with All Examples

Make a copy of this Google Sheet to get the examples.

Video Tutorial

YouTube player


  • This function ignores text, boolean, and empty cells.
  • For text values, use the MINA function instead.
  • Need the highest value? Use MAX instead.

Remember, practice makes perfect, so experiment with different scenarios and discover its full potential.