VLOOKUP is a tool that helps you look up a value on one excel sheet and use it on another excel worksheet. One can even translate a product number into a product name. VLOOKUP in excel can help with the excel tasks. In other words, we can also say that VLOOKUP is an excel translator.

What exactly VLOOKUP function do? By using VLOOKUP function, we can create a lookup table that will contain the details of the other worksheet. It allows us to search and retrieve a specific information from the worksheet.

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For example, you created a worksheet that contains a list of products with prices and you want to search for the price of a specific item or product. To find the price, we will use VLOOKUP tool to find the price of the product.

Once you learn how to use VLOOKUP function, you will be able to solve more complex and larger problems using VLOOKUP function.

By adding arguments, you will tell VLOOKUP what to search for and where to search.


If you are writing an argument for text, you will need to put it in double quotes:

=VLOOKUP (“your text”.

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Now, if the data is in cell range then you would have to add the particular cells also and separate each argument using commas:

=VLOOKUP (“your text”, A2: B6.

The third argument is the column index number. For example, the first column in the range is 1, the second column is 2. In this case, we need to find the name of the student, and names are contained in the second column. Then, the argument will be,

=VLOOKUP (“your text”, A2: B6, 2.

The fourth argument is TRUE or FALSE. THE ARGUMENT WILL BE true if you are looking for approximate matches. But, will be FALSE if looking for the exact match. For the argument to be TRUE, it’s important that the data in the first column should be sorted and numeric value. The argument will be:

=VLOOKUP (“your text”, A2: B6, 2, FALSE.

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VLOOKUP function first searches down the first vertical column. When it finds its required field, it moves to the second column to search the other required field.

There are few rules to remember about the table array.

1. The value to be referenced, the values must be contained in the left column.
2. There should be no duplicate values in the leftmost column of the lookup range.
3. While referring the lookup table, try not changing the reference cell and populating the other cells while you drag the required field.
4. Col index num is the column on the lookup table that has the information that you need.
5. Range lookup is the field that defines how close the match should exist between the lookup table and the leftmost column.

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Once you learn the basics of VLOOKUP function, you’ll be able to solve more complex and larger problems using the VLOOKUP tool.