How to fix the counter in the report tabs

Here’s a video that explains the issue, why it happened, and what you can do about it. If you prefer a text version, just scroll beyond the video for that.

And here’s the text version of this video if you prefer that.

The problem

In the reporting tabs, you have column P. That’s where we calculate the total numbers across the spreadsheet for a particular type of post, silo, keyword research method, writer, or editor.

All is well as long as it tallies the number based on a specific parameter or month. However, under particular circumstances – when there are no specific parameters and you’re trying to generate an overall number – one cell is off.

How to reproduce the problem: Set the filter to “any status” or leave it blank, the total sum (in cell P3)  will show a number larger by one than the actual number that should be there.

For example, If you have 30 topics in the content plan, you’ll see 31 in cell P3 in the report tabs.

Who is affected?

We fixed the formula in the master sheet and demo sheet on Saturday, November 19, 2022. If you created your copy of the spreadsheet before that date, you might encounter this issue.

Why did it happen?

If you’re interested in the “behind-the-scenes”, here’s the nerdy explanation. 

The formula in the column has a parameter indicating how many lines it should ignore when it tries to count the items in the main table. This parameter was accidentally set to 0 instead of 1. 

As long as we filtered the count by any parameter, there was no problem. After all, that first row does not include a date, a status, or any other variable required for a filtered count. 

However, once we asked the spreadsheet to calculate the overall number of posts regardless of status,  the first row was added to the count, increasing the total by 1. 

The bottom line is the issue is limited to cell P3 in the reporting tabs and only happens when you don’t choose a specific status. At that point, the number is off by one. Most people will never notice the issue.

However, we want to address the problem.

We have fixed the original spreadsheet and are now reaching out to those who already bought the course, with this email.

So, what can you do now?

First, let me apologize for the inconvenience. We tested the spreadsheet as best we could, including by sharing it with beta testers. They helped us iron out multiple issues, but we missed this one. 

As for what can be done now, you have four options.

Option #1: Start a fresh copy

If you haven’t made any changes to the spreadsheet yet, you can simply go back to the source file and make a new copy. We have applied the fix to the master sheet, so you’ll get the fixed version. The link is available in the course (log into your Teachable account to grab that).

Option #2: Fix the formula

If you have already tweaked the spreadsheet, you can run a simple “search and replace” for four characters.
Here are the steps (you can also watch how I do this in the video above) –

  1. Anywhere in the spreadsheet – click Crtl+H to bring up the “Find and replace” module. You can also use the menu to select Edit > Find  and Replace
  2. Where it says Find, type: “,0)
  3. Where it says Replace, type: “,1)
  4. Check the box that says, “Also search within formulas”
  5. Click Replace all
  6. The spreadsheet will ask you if you’re sure and then warn you that you’re about to replace in all sheets – hit OK
  7. The spreadsheet will then warn you that “ You’re trying to edit part of this sheet that shouldn’t be changed accidentally. Edit anyway?” Click ok again.
  8. Voila! It may take a short while for the replacement to happen, as the spreadsheet will look up thousands of cells with formulas.

Option #3: Let us fix your spreadsheet for you

If changing stuff in a spreadsheet seems too daunting, we are happy to help out and do this for you once you share the spreadsheet with us.
To share the spreadsheet, just – 

  1. Hit the green “Share” button at the top right corner of the spreadsheet 
  2. Share with my email address [email protected] 
  3. Make sure to have “editor” permissions set up in the drop-down menu
  4. Add a note saying that you’d like us to fix the spreadsheet for you.

My husband (who created the spreadsheet) will then fix your spreadsheet ASAP. Once done, we will remove our access and email you to let you know the spreadsheet has been fixed. 

No one will be looking at your main table (topics) or creating any copies of your spreadsheet. You have my personal word on that.

Option #4: Do nothing and ignore the whole thing

Last but not least, if you started working on the spreadsheet, you don’t want to change the formula yourself and you don’t want us to fix it for you, just keep on using the spreadsheet as usual. 

This is a minor issue that should not affect your experience. 

One last thing

While I have your attention…

A couple of users asked me this –

In the reporting tabs, there are columns for each month, covering the last 12 months. A couple of users asked me what happens to these columns as time goes by. They were wondering if they should be adding new columns as new months come along.

For example, you purchased the spreadsheet in November 2022, so that month is showing up in column O above, showing you the published numbers for November 2022. But what happens when December 2022 rolls in?

The good news is that you don’t have to do anything. And there is no bad news.

The reports always show you a breakdown of the last 12 months. You will always see the current month in the last monthly column, and the preceding eleven months.

The idea here is to give you an overview of your content balance over the last year. This content could potentially still be in the process of being indexed and ranked. Once the dust settles, it simply becomes “older” content, no longer requiring a monthly breakdown. It just gets covered in the totals.

That’s it for the update. Again, my apologies for the inconvenience and thank you for buying the course!