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Published at Fri May 31 2024 in
For Teams

Smartsheet vs Google Sheets vs Rows: Which One is Better in 2024


After hours of research and testing, I have narrowed down our search for the best spreadsheet software to 3 – Smartsheet, Google Sheets, and Rows.

But let’s take my research a little further and get to know which of these three software is the best for your business.

But before I start an in-depth side-by-side comparison, here’s a little summary of the three platforms:

Smartsheet borrows the interface from a spreadsheet to solve project management and data pipeline tasks. Those tasks that require more interactive commands, such as a calendar view, task assignment options, GANTT charts, kanban boards, etc., are often not available on regular spreadsheets.

Google Sheets is great if you want to manipulate mid-sized datasets and collaborate on the spreadsheet with your team.

Rows is best if you want to analyze, manipulate, and visualize data coming from multiple sources in a modern way. The tool comes with 50+ integrations and advanced AI capabilities, making data analysis easy even for non-data-friendly users.

Now, let’s compare the features, integrations, pricing, and what people have to say about these software.

The spreadsheet where data comes to life

The spreadsheet where data comes to life

Connected to your business data. Powered by AI. Delightful to share.

Try Rows for Free

Features - ​​Smartsheet vs Google Sheets vs Rows

Rows Features

Rows hero-min

Rows is a modern spreadsheet software that comes with extra flexibility when transforming or visualizing data.

It’s the easiest way to use data on a spreadsheet – from importing data via third-party tools to visualizing it with charts and graphs; Rows can do it all.

Feature 1. Data Integration

Rows eases the process of importing data into a spreadsheet. It integrates with 50+ data sources and imports data with just a few clicks.

You know what’s the best part? All data connectors in Rows are built-in native features. You don’t need an external add-on to use AI in your analysis.

Curious about how Rows does it?

It handles JSONs in the grid and converts them into table format.

This feature comes in handy and saves time when building recurring reports or handling messy CSVs.

Some examples of data integration in Rows are:

Import Google Analytics 4 data to Rows and get key analytics and reporting. Pick one of the recommended reports or build your own custom view as follows:

Or you can:

  • Connect your LinkedIn page and track comments to your posts.

  • Connect Slack to Rows and set alert automation to your #social channel whenever a new comment appears on your social media posts. All from a spreadsheet.

  • Import a Notion database in Rows with a few clicks, enrich data, and send it back to Notion.

When the tool you’re working with isn’t listed in our catalog, use our HTTP tool to make GET, POST, PATCH, and PUT requests to any endpoint using basic or API token authentication methods. 

Feature 2. Inbuilt AI to Solve Complex Problems

Rows integrates with OpenAI and leverages AI to make data analysis easy, even for non-data-friendly users. It gives you solutions to complex problems using natural language rather than formulas.

What’s more, there’s no need for you to install any third-party plugin for the AI to work. Everything is in-built, leading to a seamless user experience.

Rows has three main AI components:

1. AI Functions

Rows X OpenAI gives you access to the software’s 14 proprietary functions that automate prompts and address specific types of tasks.

Here’s one of the use cases of AI functions – EXTRACT_OPENAI in action:

Similarly, you can also execute sentiment analysis on a social media comment or product review using the function – SENTIMENT_ANALYSIS_OPENAI or clean up data using APPLY_TASK_OPENAI

Discover more about all possible use cases of AI in Rows.

2. AI Analyst

With our Analyst, you can use natural language to ask data-related questions to AI. It will do all the calculations for you, including descriptive statistics, data summarization, transformation, and pivoting. Discover more.

AI analyst 2

3. AI Subtitles

Ask AI to generate subtitles for your tables and graphs that include key insights from the data displayed.

add subtitle

Feature 3. Build Layout That Are Delightful to Share

Rows layout lets you build elegant dashboards that are great to share. See an example of our investor dashboard (numbers are dummy).

investor dashboard rows-min


Apart from this, you can also embed tables and charts beautifully on Notion, Confluence, website, wiki, or other internal tools that support iframes with ease.

It’s a simple 4 step process:

  1. Choose Embed in the settings menu located in the right-hand corner of the element you want to embed.

  2. Click the Share Privately toggle.

  3. Click <> Copy code. You can use the Copy link to paste directly into tools that automatically embed via the link - e.g., Notion.

  4. Paste the embed code on your website, wiki, or destination tool.

See for yourself in the following interactive demo:

Learn how to use Embed in the most recent documentation tools, like Notion, Confluence, and Slite.

The spreadsheet where data comes to life

The spreadsheet where data comes to life

Connected to your business data. Powered by AI. Delightful to share.

Try Rows for Free

Smartsheet Features

smartsheet hero-min

Smartsheet is the most spreadsheet-like data management software in the market. It’s spreadsheet-like with more dynamic and integrated features to manage projects, automate processes, and collaborate on the go. 

If you use spreadsheets to track projects or manage progress reports, Smartsheet is likely your best option.

Let's take a close look at what the software can help you with.

1. Project management

Smartsheet offers flexible views and ways to manage projects or data workflows. With a click, you can switch between seven views, including Grid, Gantt, Timeline, Kanban, and Calendar view.

smartsheet view-min

It also lets you build custom dashboards using widgets and visual elements that display live data from sources like Google Analytics, Tableau, and YouTube.

The Grid view offers a spreadsheet-like interface and is particularly useful for users accustomed to spreadsheets. 

However, Rows and Google Sheets triumph over visualizing spreadsheet data. Smartsheet's visualization capabilities are limited, with little to no customization options.

Compared to Rows and Sheets, Smartsheet offers fewer charts and graphs, card and board views, and templates to choose from.

2. Data Analysis

Smartsheet offers a catalog of formulas and functions for basic data analysis. You'll also find advanced functions to add dependencies, filters, and inter-link cells. 

Smartsheet's cross-sheet cell linking lets you sync and share real-time information across sheets. A data change in the source sheet automatically modifies linked data in other sheets. 

The business and enterprise plans allow you to access baselines, cell version history, and work insights to analyze trends, activities, and bottlenecks. 

The major differentiator here is that, unlike Rows and Google Sheets, Smartsheet limits the number of functions, sheets, and collaborators you can add with every plan. This makes analyzing large datasets costly and inflexible for Smartsheet users.

3. Automation and AI

Smartsheet streamlines tasks with no-code workflows. Its visual workflow builder lets you drag and drop triggers, conditions, and action blocks to set up versatile workflows across devices, communication platforms, or apps like Teams and Slack.

workflow smartsheet-min

Alternatively, you can access preset automation templates for recurring or one-off tasks such as data ingestion, reminders, etc. Each sheet can have up to 150 workflows. 

Like Rows AI Analyst, Smartsheet AI lets you get instant insight into your business and answer ad hoc questions with AI-generated charts and metrics. Use it to draft ad copy and task description, generate formulas, analyze sentiment, translate text, summarize text status, and more.

4. Real-Time Collaboration

Collaboration is core to Smartsheet. The software offers advanced collaboration features like Proofing that help streamline and manage content creation and approval from an intuitive interface directly in Smartsheet.

What’s more, you can create and assign tasks, share comments with @mention, and stay updated with in-app alerts. 

The best part is that you can share sheets with or without a Smartsheet account.

smartsheet collaboration-min

Google Sheets Features

Google sheets hero-min

Google Sheets is a free cloud-based spreadsheet app. It boasts powerful features and functions for data analysis, harmonization, and visualization. 

Let's take a closer look at Sheets' features.

1. Data Manipulation and Analysis

​​Google Sheets is the most capable data manipulator out of the three. Unlike Smartsheet, it has an easy-to-use interface that focuses on managing rows, columns, or sheets of data.

It offers an extensive catalog of preset formulas and functions. In fact, it has the most comprehensive catalog compared to the other two. You can also create custom functions with built-in Sheets formulas that are reusable. 

Plus, you'd find assistive features that help you analyze faster with fewer errors (more on this in the next section).

When dealing with large datasets, Google Sheets performs more smoothly without slowing down or charging for additional rows.

2. AI and Automation

When it comes to AI and automation, Google Sheets stands second to Rows and Smartsheet. When you use Sheets, you primarily have to rely on third-party apps and custom scripts for AI and automation.

Of course, you'd find some assistive AI features like Smartfill, formula suggestions, automatic data cleaning, and removing duplicates. But that's it. Sheets doesn't implement a full-fledged AI like Rows and Smartsheet.

However, there's a buzz around Gemini rolling out to Google Workspace (including Google Sheets), so we're yet to see how it unfolds.

For the time being, if you’re troubled by monotonous tasks, you can record macros to streamline workflows. Macros are bite-size recordings of specific tasks. Once recorded, Sheets automatically performs those processes for you with a click.

3. Data Visualization

Google Sheets has more data visualization options considering its use case. You'd find everything from bars to graphs to waterfall charts and widgets for data visualization.

It has a built-in Chart Editor that offers fine-grained customization options for visuals, which you'll find lacking when visualizing data using Smartsheet.

Rows, of course, stand neck-to-neck with Sheets. 

Also, Google Sheets has a more extensive template gallery than Smartsheet. There's a separate Template Gallery add-on for Google Sheets that provides access to over 100 professionally designed templates created by

These templates cover various categories, such as calendars, financial calculators, invoices, budget spreadsheets, and other time-saving tools.

4. Real-Time Collaboration

Unlike Smartsheet, Google Sheets is more database-centralized and focuses on efficient collaboration within its scope. It offers features like real-time co-editing and communication within sheets. 

finance report google sheets-min

Which Spreadsheet Tool Has Better Features?

All these tools have a couple of features better than the other two:

  • Rows’ superior data visualization features and use of AI makes it a go-to solution for non-data-friendly users.

  • Google Sheets has the most number of functions and formulas to analyze complex data.

  • Smartsheet offers a decent number of functions and formulas to work with and some great collaboration features.

Integrations - ​​Smartsheet vs Google Sheets vs Rows

Rows Integrations

Rows integrates with 50+ different software that helps with data import and export, marketing, finance, translations, messaging, and more processes.

Some of the best integrations Rows offers are:

  • Marketing: TikTok, Linkedin, Google Analytics 4, Facebook

  • Finance: Alpha Vantage, Stripe, VAT-Search

  • Databases: Notion, PostgreSQL, Amazon Redshift

  • Connectors: Make, Looker Studio, Microsoft Power BI, Zapier

  • CRM: Mailchimp, Salesforce, Pipedrive, Zoho CRM

If the tool you are using is not in Rows catalog, you can always execute custom API requests to any endpoint with proprietary HTTP functions

Lastly, one of the most important integrations of Rows that helps make data analysis a whole lot easier is with OpenAI.

integrations catalog-min

Smartsheet Integration

Similar to Rows, Smartsheet integrations extend to various third-party applications, allowing users to unlock siloed data and bring Smartsheet into their existing tech stacks for enhanced productivity.

Smartsheet Data Shuttle can create automated CSV and XLSX data imports from most systems, like SAP, Workday, and more, into Smartsheet. Other integrations include:

  • ERPs and CRMs: Salesforce, Jira, Tableau, Power BI

  • Messaging and communication: Slack and MS Teams

  • Content collaboration: DocuSign, Miro, Adobe Creative Cloud

  • Workflow automation: Zapier, Workato, Power Automate

  • Security and governance: Microsoft Defender, Skyhigh Security

sync data smartsheet-min

Google Sheets Integrations

Google Sheets natively integrates with Looker Studio, BigQuery, and other Google Workspace apps. Rows and Smartsheet, on the other hand, have far more integration options to connect spreadsheets with your existing app ecosystem.

Nevertheless, Sheets has its dedicated Google Workspace Marketplace, which offers hundreds of free and paid add-ons for Sheets. You can expect add-ons to tools like Google Analytics, Lucidchart, Autocrat, Mail Merge, and Jira Cloud. 

Google Sheets Bigquery connector-min

Which Spreadsheet Tool Has Better Integration?

Rows and Smartsheet both have a great set of integrations that help you with data import and export and other use cases like marketing, finance, etc.

When it comes to integrations, Google Sheets isn’t in the competition.

The only difference between Rows and Smartsheet is that Rows takes integrations a step forward because all its integrations are native. 

Pricing - Smartsheet vs Google Sheets vs Rows

Rows Pricing

Rows offers a generous free plan where you can onboard unlimited members, up to 10 guests, and execute up to 50 integration tasks per month. If you want premium features and increased limits, Rows also offers 3 paid plans to choose from:

  • Plus: $15/month/member, up to 25 guests, unlimited integration tasks & daily data refresh.

  • Pro: $22/month/member, up to 100 guests, unlimited integration tasks & hourly data refresh.

  • Enterprise: Custom price for advanced API usage and workflows.

rows pricing-min

Smartsheet Pricing

Smartsheet offers a free forever plan limited to 1 user and 3 sheets. Other than that, it has three premium plans:

  • Pro: $9 per user per month

  • Business: $32 per user per month

  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

smartsheet pricing

Google Sheets Pricing

Google Sheets is free for individual use. However, it is available as part of Google Workspace for businesses. 

Here are its four annual plans to choose from:

  • Business Starter: $6 per user per month

  • Business Standard: $12 per user per month

  • Business Plus: $18 per user per month

  • Enterprise: Custom pricing

Google sheets pricing.png -min

What are Customers saying?

Rows Reviews

The knowledge base Rows offers for every feature and integration is commendable, and users love it.

“Excellent job, before beginning to use the Rows, I really love short introduction videos as a taste of getting started tutorial. And also asking the user's level of understanding about spreadsheets was a plus. It is easy to use and easy to share. Good visual design!” - Product Hunt.

Rows review 3-min


A large number of integrations makes it easy for users to import and export data.

“The most innovative customer-centric tool currently available. As a spreadsheet lover, Rows is incredible. The amount of integrations you get out of the tin is just amazing. And now with OpenAI!

I would support Rows just because of the product but the reality is that what I love more about the product is the passion behind it. Torben and Henrique (and the rest of the team) are extremely passionate about their users, constantly meeting them, requesting feedback and actioning it. Whilst that is how businesses should operate, close to their clients in order to improve their products, we all well know that it is now the case very often.” - Product Hunt.

Rows review 3


The spreadsheet where data comes to life

The spreadsheet where data comes to life

Connected to your business data. Powered by AI. Delightful to share.

Try Rows for Free

Smartsheet Reviews

Smartsheet has an impressive 4.4/5 rating on G2 (15k+ reviews); however, after skimming through the reviews, we realized the platform is not all gold. 

Most reviews covered Smartsheet slowing down when ingested with large datasets (a few hundred rows). 

This user specifically highlighted this limitation while also commending Smartsheet's ability to automate data management. 

smartsheet review-min

Google Sheets Reviews

Sheets has always been in talks for its real-time collaboration feature, which makes people choose it over Excel and other spreadsheet apps.

However, being a free, cloud-native platform, Sheet is always speculated for data privacy concerns. 

Rows and Smartsheet are less susceptible to data breaches than Google Sheets. Both tools integrate security and privacy features into their tech stack to ensure the data stays safe and secure.

google sheets review-min

Wrapping Up

I hope this detailed comparison between Smartsheet vs Google Sheets vs Rows helped you decide which spreadsheet software is the best for your business.

Here’s a quick wrap-up of the three software:

Rows make it easy to analyze and visualize data with sleek, modern features:

  • It leverages AI to make data analysis easy and accessible.

  • It comes with stunning data visualization features to build charts and graphs for all kinds of data.

  • All its integrations are native, making it easy to import and export data.

Smartsheet is the best match for you if you want to manage data in a better yet easy way. The software has decent functions and formulas to work with and several third-party integrations.

Google Sheets is a great free spreadsheet software for individuals looking to analyze mid-sized datasets and need a large number of functions and formulas.

If you or your team don’t have the time to try all three spreadsheet tools, go to, import data, automate your report, and see if it's the right match!

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