When you have a lot of numeric data which you need to make sense of, the Descriptive Statistics tool can help.

To demonstrate using a simple example, my dataset is the number of each ball in the UK National Lottery (numbers 1 to 49).

Data Analysis tools must be enabled in order to run Descriptive Statistics.

In the Data tab, choose Data Analysis from the Analysis section and from the options select Descriptive Statistics.

In this case we have just entered the Input Range, which is the cell range containing the lottery ball values of 1 to 49 and we’ve chosen an Output Range and ticked ‘Summary statistics’. The results are as follows:

Depending on what you’re analysing, some of the outputs will be useful and others won’t. As an example, we’ve taken the Mean and Standard Deviation from this summary and used it in a Random Number Generation for another article.