How to Set Reminders and Alerts in Google Sheets Spreadsheets

Google Sheets is a powerful spreadsheet application that enables users to store, organize, and analyze data efficiently. However, it lacks native functionality to set reminders and alerts based on cell values or dates. Fortunately, there are some easy workarounds using Google Sheets add-ons, Google Apps Script, and integrating with other G Suite products like Google Calendar.

Why Set Reminders and Alerts

Here are some common scenarios where reminders and alerts in Sheets can be helpful:

  • Get notified when a task or project deadline is approaching
  • Remind colleagues about assigned tasks and deadlines
  • Track expenses and get alerts when a budget limit is exceeded
  • Monitor inventory levels and reorder when stock runs low
  • Send automated emails when form responses are submitted
  • Set up server monitoring and get alerts when issues occur

Reminders and alerts allow you to stay on top of critical information and events. They save time by automating manual checks and notifications.

Google Sheets Add-ons for Reminders and Alerts

There are some easy-to-use third-party add-ons that provide reminder and notification functionality in Sheets:

1. Add Reminders

Add Reminders lets you schedule email reminders based on dates in your sheet. You simply have to set a date column and email column, and the add-on will send automatic reminders as per those dates.

Some key features:

  • Set reminders hours, days or even months in advance
  • Customize email subject and body
  • Supports notifications for multiple contacts
  • Easy to set up with no coding required

2. Magic Cell Notifications

This add-on monitors cell values and triggers email or webhook alerts based on preset rules. For instance, you can get notified if a cell value becomes zero, contains certain text, goes above or below a threshold etc.

Key features:

  • Monitor single cells, rows, columns or cell ranges
  • Trigger notifications on edit, form submission or periodically
  • Customize notification messages
  • Integrate alerts with Slack, Discord etc. using webhooks

Google Apps Script for Custom Alerts

For more advanced and customized alerts, Google Apps Script is the way to go. This JavaScript-based scripting language helps extend Sheets functionality in powerful ways.

Here are some examples of reminders you can build with Apps Script:

Send Email on Form Submission

Apps Script enables you to trigger notifications whenever someone submits a Google Form linked to the sheet:

function sendEmailOnFormSubmit() {

  var ss = SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSpreadsheet();
  var sheet = ss.getSheets()[0];  

  var response = sheet.getRange(sheet.getLastRow(), 1, 1, sheet.getLastColumn()).getValues()[0];

  // Send customized email alert based on form response

  MailApp.sendEmail("[email protected]", "New Form Submission", response);


This script sends an email with the form response data whenever a new submission comes in.

Reminder Before Date

You can check dates in a sheet and send reminders via email as they approach:

function sendDateReminders() {

  var sheet = SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet();
  var data = sheet.getDataRange().getValues();  

  var today = new Date();
  for (var i = 1; i < data.length; i++) {

    var rowDate = new Date(data[i][0]); 
    var daysLeft = Math.round((rowDate - today) / (1000 * 60 * 60 * 24));

    if (daysLeft <= 10) {
      MailApp.sendEmail(data[i][1], "Upcoming Date Alert", "There are only " + daysLeft + " days left for date " + data[i][0]);



This sends email alerts to the concerned person when there are 10 or fewer days left for a date. The date and email address are fetched from columns A and B respectively.

Integrate with Google Calendar for Reminders

Google Calendar is a great solution for setting up reminders and alerts related to events and schedules.

You can use the Calendar API to directly create calendar events from Sheets. Apps Script provides easy methods like CalendarApp.createEvent(title, startTime, endTime) to automate this.

The key benefit is that Calendar provides robust options for reminders. You can set custom reminders minutes, hours, days or weeks before an event. Further, Calendar reminders sync across devices which is useful for alerts on-the-go.

Tips for Effective Reminders

Here are some tips to ensure your reminders and alerts are useful rather than annoying:

Set appropriate reminder periods – Don’t send too many premature alerts. Find the optimal time for reminders based on the scenario.

Customize messages – Personalized messages with specific task details are more meaningful than generic templates.

Use appropriate channels – Email works for most cases but instant message alerts may be better for urgent notifications.

Check notification delivery – Follow up if there is no response to a reminder. The person may have not received or read it.

Monitor effectiveness – Occasionally review your reminder system to check if it is working as intended.

Document thoroughly – Note down any Apps Scripts or add-ons used so that others can understand and maintain these automations if required.

Wrapping Up

Reminders and alerts are extremely useful in Sheets to track all kinds of personal and professional deadlines, tasks, inventory levels, form responses and more.

The options covered in this article should give you a good starting point. Start simple by using add-ons and then explore custom scripts for advanced functionality. Proper reminders ensure you act at the right time and don’t miss critical events.

Let me know in the comments if you have any other creative ideas for reminders and alerts in Google Sheets! I’m always looking to learn new tricks.