Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using the Solver
Your total cost for placing advertisements in Pub3 and Pub4 must not exceed
Figure 18-22 shows one way to lay out the problem.
Figure 18-22 You can use the Solver to determine how many advertisements to place in each
publication to meet your objectives at the lowest possible cost.
You can find the Advertising.xlsx file with the other examples on the companion website.
This section merely introduces the Solver. A complete treatment of this powerful tool
is beyond the scope of this topic. For more details, including an explanation of the
Solver error messages, see the Help system. For background material about
optimization, we recommend Financial Models Using Simulation and Optimization II: Investment
by Wayne L. Winston (Palisade Corporation, 2008). Also, visit Frontline Systems’ Solver
website at for information about purchasing a more sophisticated
You might be able to work out this problem yourself by substituting many alternatives for
the values currently in D2:D7, keeping your eye on the constraints and noting the impact of
your changes on the total expenditure figure in E8. In fact, that’s what the Solver does for
you—but it does it more rapidly, and it uses some analytic techniques to home in on the
optimal solution without having to try every conceivable alternative.
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