When You Run Out of Sheets?

David Johs
edited 12/09/19 in Smartsheet Basics

I find it frustrating the answer to this IMO obvious question for any potential new user isn't front and center in a FAQ. We've tried SmartSheet several times over the years, loved it every single time, but quickly gave up on it because of the crazy pricing structure where a user can only have 50 sheets (or whatever based on the plan).

It's not just that it's a crazy pricing structure, it's that it would seem to require endless work exporting and/or backing up sheets. Nothing I can find int he FAQ seems to address this elephant in the room (it tells how to export or backup but never discusses running out of sheets etc.)

I'm curious how other users deal with this? It seems like such a mess to me. Even the export process seems messed up, if I export to G Suite it just seems to dump the file in my personal drive. Then I would have to move it to where i want it in drive, then delete the original smartsheet so I don't use up all my sheets?!

Has anyone automated this process? Or do most of you have enterprise accounts (which we cannot afford) so you don't have to deal with this?

Lastly, if Smartsheet answers, why isn't there a simple way to just archive a sheet? It seems like the limitations would be perfectly reasonable is you just allowed users to archive their old sheets, yet I cannot find an archive option.

Thanks for any advice.


  • J. Craig Williams
    J. Craig Williams ✭✭✭✭✭✭


    I feel your pain.

    I have one customer that just buys more. I helped redesign their system last year to use 80% less sheets. You can purchase more, apparently. Talk to your Customer Rep if you have one.

    For archiving, I use TEMPLATES. This saves most of the things you should care about -- formulas, conditional formatting, others --- that an Export to Excel just does not do. Templates do not count against your limits. Save the Sheet as a Template and then delete the Sheet.

    I assume you are on a Team-3. I had that too and would run out of sheets a lot. It requires a system that allows for 'maintenance time' --- that's where my system falls apart. I always seem to get busy when I am close to my limits. 

    For large volume systems (many new rows per day/week), I sometimes use Zapier to archive the rows to a sheet that gets archived (to a Template) once a month (or more frequently if necessary). That's a manual process for now.

    I also wrote some API code to extract just the formulas from a sheet so if I wanted to Export to the Excel, I could also add that as a worksheet. 

    This is definitely a pain point. Careful analysis of your sheets and organization could help. Besides the customer mentioned above, I have seen orgs with 1000 sheets but no idea what they were. 

    I hope that helps.