Use Solver to determine the maximum or minimum value of one cell by changing other cells. For example, you can change the amount of your projected advertising budget and see the effect on your projected profit amount.

Example of a Solver problem

In the following example, the level of advertising in each quarter affects the number of units sold, indirectly determining the amount of sales revenue, the associated expenses, and the profit. Solver can change the quarterly budgets for advertising (cells B11:E11), up to a total budget constraint of $40,000 (cell F11), until the value for the total profit reaches the maximum possible amount. The values in the decision variable cells are used to calculate the profit for each quarter, so the values are related to the formula in the target cell F15, =SUM(B15:E15).



Callout 1 Decision variable cells

Callout 2 Constraint cell

Callout 3 Objective cell


After Solver runs, the new values are as follows.



See more examples in Solver sample worksheets.  To download more advanced examples, register or login, and visit our Examples main page.

You can use Solver to find better ways to allocate scarce resources, maximize profits or minimize costs or risks, in a wide range of applications in finance and investment, marketing, manufacturing and production, distribution and logistics, purchasing, and human resources, as well as science and engineering.