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If you use Google Sheets for online collaboration, then you’ve seen how easy it is to share your Google Sheets with other users. As long as the recipient has a Google Account, it will take one click of a button. What’s more, Google Sheets offers various ways to share specific data by limiting user access or hiding specific sheets. It also makes it pretty easy to view hidden sheets or tabs that you find missing in Google Sheets.

In this article, you’ll learn how to hide tabs from other users as well as how to unhide sheets in Google Sheets following two quick and effective ways. However, as these methods include some manual work, you’ll find Layer is a powerful alternative as you can fully manage access to your data following automatic processes.

How to hide tabs in Google Sheets?

Hiding tabs in Google Sheets is not only about restricting access to data. For that, it’s best that you learn how to protect sheets or lock cells in Google Sheets. If your aim is to simply make it easier to navigate for other users to navigate your spreadsheet, this is how you can use Google Sheets to hide tabs from certain users.

How To Share Only One Tab in Google Sheets
How To Share Only One Tab in Google Sheets

When sharing a Google Sheets spreadsheet Google usually tries to share the entire document. Here’s how to share only one tab instead.

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How to use Google Sheets to hide tabs from certain users?

Let’s say that you’re about to share your Google Spreadsheet with the finance team. Since they will only be interested in specific data, you can make their life easier and hide any tabs containing irrelevant information for them. This is how you hide one or more tabs for specific users.

  1. 1. Open your Google Sheets and right-click on the tab or click on the drop-down arrow next to the tab name.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Right click or press arrow in tab
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Right-click or press arrow in tab
  1. 2. Select "Hide sheet" from the drop-down menu.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Hide sheet
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Hide sheet
  1. 3. Your spreadsheet should now show one less tab. You can repeat this process for as many tabs as you need.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Hidden tabs
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Hidden tabs

Don’t forget that you’ll only be able to hide a sheet if there is more than one tab in the Google Sheets file. Moreover, you need to make sure that the user permissions are set before sharing the Google Sheets file with the hidden tabs. You can read more about this in our article Google Sheets Permissions: Edit, Comment, View.

How to unhide tabs in Google Sheets?

Unhiding Google Sheets tabs is just as easy as hiding them. There are two quick ways to unhide tabs in Google Sheets.

How to unhide tabs in Google Sheets from the top menu?

  1. 1. Go to your Google Sheets and click "View".
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets View
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - View
  1. 2. Place your mouse cursor over "Hidden sheets" to access the list of hidden tabs.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Hidden sheets
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Hidden sheets
  1. 3. Click on the sheet that you want to unhide.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Show sheet
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Show sheet

Let’s see an alternative way to unhide sheets that also takes a few simple steps.

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How to Password Protect a Google Sheet

How to unhide tabs in Google Sheets from the bottom menu?

  1. 1. In your Google Sheets, go to the bottom-left side of your spreadsheet. You should see an icon with three horizontal lines. Click on it to access the list of hidden sheets.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Click to view hidden tabs list
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Click to view hidden tabs list
  1. 2. Hidden sheets will appear greyed out. Click on the one you’d like to unhide.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Click to unhide
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Click to unhide
  1. 3. Google Sheets will now shoe the hidden tab.
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets Unhidden sheets
How To Hide And Unhide Tabs In Google Sheets - Unhidden sheets

Although hiding and unhiding tabs in Google Sheets is a fairly simple process, it requires manual work. It’s fine in case you only have a few tabs; but what if you have more than 5 for every spreadsheet? To unhide all sheets at once, you need to create Google Sheets Macros to record the hiding and unhiding process, and then run any of these tasks automatically.

Google Sheets also include Apps Script, the equivalent of Excel’s VBA, where you can integrate with any Google product and automate tasks across these platforms.

How to manage access to data with Layer?

Layer adds productivity features to your Google Sheets. Share parts of your spreadsheet, request input, and accept or reject changes to make collaboration seamless and more efficient while keeping full control over your data.

Using Layer, you can:

  • Manage Access: Give spreadsheet access to relevant stakeholders on a tab or cell level.
  • Review & Track: Consolidate input, and easily track changes.
  • Collaborate: Define, assign, and automate tasks and set deadlines.

Sign up for early access and start automating your Google Sheets workflows with Layer!

Conclusion

Hiding tabs in Google Sheets should never be used as a method of protection. You’ve seen how easy it is to unhide tabs! These features are mainly used as a way of filtering the data you’d like to share with other users. If you want to restrict data access to users, you’ll have to learn other methods to do so.

You should now know how to hide tabs using different methods in Google Sheets, and unhide them, so you can view or edit the data. You’ve also seen how Layer works as an alternative solution where you can create your own workflows to manage access automatically.

To learn about more ways to manage access to your Google Sheets, the article below will guide you step by step:

Hady ElHady
Hady is Content Lead at Layer.

Hady has a passion for tech, marketing, and spreadsheets. Besides his Computer Science degree, he has vast experience in developing, launching, and scaling content marketing processes at SaaS startups.

Originally published Jul 15 2022, Updated Jul 6 2022