In Excel, relative and absolute references are used to specify how cell references behave when a formula is copied or moved to another location within the spreadsheet. Let’s break down each type:

**Relative References:**
- A relative reference in a formula changes based on its new location when the formula is copied or moved.
- For example, if you have a formula
`=A1+B1`

in cell C1, and you copy this formula to cell C2, the formula will adjust to `=A2+B2`

because the references are relative to the new location.

**Absolute References:**
- An absolute reference in a formula remains constant, regardless of where the formula is copied or moved.
- Absolute references are denoted by adding dollar signs ($) before the column letter and row number. For example,
`$A$1`

.
- For example, if you have a formula
`=$A$1+B1`

in cell C1, and you copy this formula to cell C2, the reference to cell A1 will not change, while the reference to B1 will adjust to B2.

**Mixed References:**
- Mixed references have one absolute component and one relative component. You can make either the column or row absolute while keeping the other relative.
- For example,
`$A1`

is an absolute column reference but a relative row reference, while `A$1`

is a relative column reference but an absolute row reference.

In Excel, you can switch between relative and absolute references by manually typing the dollar signs ($) before the column letter and row number, or by pressing the `F4`

key after selecting the cell reference in the formula bar. The `F4`

key toggles through different reference types (absolute, relative, mixed) each time it is pressed.