First, so we're all on the same page, this is Excel (2010, I think. Might be 2007.) The files themselves are called workbooks and each individual tab within the workbook is a spreadsheet.
I have been using a separate workbook for each book. They kinda look like this:
So, I made a new workbook to encompass all the books in one place. It's my 2015 Book Sales workbook. (The one called Sales Totals is what I refer to as the Master Plan. It's very pretty and has multiple charts & graphs.)
The 2015 Book Sales workbook keeps everything in one place. Now, instead of opening 4 separate files (one for each book and the Sales Totals), I will be able to open two files:
|Isn't it pretty?|
|My 'Pages Read' graph|
Well, I'm hoping to track what works and what doesn't. Find sales patterns and then find a way to recreate the spikes. Look for trends and maximize them. And I do the individual book thing because each book is different - different pricing at different times, different page counts, different genres, different marketing efforts. :shrug: Or, it could be that I like playing with data.
|Sales Totals, Daily Sales, color-coded for mktg efforts|
I hope this helps. I suspect at this point, it probably didn't answer the questions people might've had on exactly 'how' to do it. That would take hours and I suspect I might not be the awesome software instructor I used to be. Excel nowadays, though, does a lot of the work for you. Autosum was a godsend, let me tell ya. And being able to type the equal sign then click a cell in a whole other spreadsheet? I could kiss someone for that. Try typing out '[2015 Book Sales.xlsx]Monthly Totals'!$B$13 in one cell and then in the next cell that but now the B should be a C, or the 13 has to be a 14. Ugh. What a pain.
Now, it's not exactly what I would call easy-peasy, but it is a lot easier than it used to be. Don't be afraid of it. Play around. Try some things. But do what I didn't do and plan ahead. Don't just think about your needs now, but what your needs might be a couple books or a year down the road. Or you'll wind up like me - building a new workbook and then going back and populating it from the old workbooks. It's a lot of work I could've saved myself if I'd planned ahead. In the end, though, the work I put in now will save me time in the long run.
Any questions? Do you keep spreadsheets? What do use yours for? (I also have one for expenses. I used to have a spreadsheet that listed all the books I owned - titles, authors, pub dates, etc. I still have one I use for quotes.)