An Overview of FIND Function | Microsoft Excel

The FIND function is one of the text functions in Microsoft Excel. You can use it as a standalone function as well as in collaboration with the other functions. This article will give you an overview of the FIND function in Excel.

Objectives

The FIND function gets the location of a text inside a text string and returns the location as a number. For example, FIND(“x”,“yxz”) will return the location of x in the yxz string.

Syntax

=FIND (find_text, within_text, [start_num])

Arguments

  • find_text: Compulsory. The text you want to find.
  • within_text: Compulsory. The text within which you want to search.
  • start_num: Non-Compulsory. The starting position in the text to search. By default, the function will start searching for the first letter. But in case you want to start searching for any other positions, you can mention that using this argument.

Suppose, you want to search for the location of N in the string  “November Rain”. If you do not specify any start_num, the function will start from the first character of that string. If you want to start the search from any specified position like after the 4th character of the string then you have to specify this argument and the function will ignore the first 3 characters and start searching from the 4th character.

Output

The location of the searched text in number.

Examples of FIND Function

Suppose, you have a string “Brazil” and you want to get the location of “z”.To do that you can use the FIND function.

Here is the formula for using this FIND function:

=FIND("z","Brazil")

The output will be 4 which refers to the position of the letter “z” inside the string Brazil.

Here are some examples of the usage of the FIND function.

Examples of FIND Function in Excel

Usage Guide of FIND Function

Step_1: Start with inserting an equal sign (=) in a blank cell.

Step_2: Then type FIND.

Step_3: Type open parenthesis “(“.

As you type the open parenthesis, Excel shows the syntax of the FIND function.

Usage Guide of FIND Function in Excel

Step_4: Insert the text we need to find the location for.

You can directly insert the text or a cell address that contains the text.

Here, I’m inserting A2 which has the text.

Usage Guide of FIND Function in Excel

Step_5: Then insert a comma (,).

After inserting the comma, Excel will ask you for the second argument which is the within_text.

Step_6: Now insert the within_text.

You can insert the cell address of the within_text or directly insert a text string as a within_text.

Here, the within_text  is in cell B2. So, I’m inserting B2 inside the function.

Step_7: After that, insert the closing parenthesis “)”.

Step_8: Finally, hit the ENTER button to insert the formula inside the cell.

Final Result

The FIND function returns a number 1. Here, the find_text is B and within_text  is Brazil. The location of B is 1 in Brazil.  So, the function returns the number 1 as the final result.

Availability

  • Excel for Microsoft 365
  • Excel 2016
  • Excel for Microsoft 365 for Mac
  • Excel 2016 for Mac
  • Excel for the web
  • Excel 2013
  • Excel 2021
  • Excel 2010
  • Excel 2021 for Mac
  • Excel 2007
  • Excel 2019
  • Excel for Mac 2011
  • Excel 2019 for Mac
  • Excel Starter 2010

Remarks

  • The FIND function shows #VALUE! error in the case the find_text is not present in the within_text.
  • This function works with number strings as well.
  • It will return a default value of 1 in case the find_text is empty.

Conclusion

The FIND function is one of the text functions in Excel. If you have any questions regarding the FIND function, please comment below. Thanks!

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