Quick, clean, and to the point

Convert column letter to number

Excel formula: Convert column letter to number
Generic formula 

To convert a column letter to an regular number (e.g. 1, 10, 26, etc.) you can use a formula based on the INDIRECT and COLUMN functions.

In the example shown, the formula in C5 is:


The first step is to construct a standard "A1" style reference using the column letter, by adding a "1" with concatenation:


This results in a text string like "A1" which is passed into the INDIRECT function.

Next, the INDIRECT function transforms the text into a proper Excel reference and hands the result off to the COLUMN function.

Finally, the COLUMN function evaluates the reference and returns the column number for the reference.

Dave Bruns

Excel Formula Training

Formulas are the key to getting things done in Excel. In this accelerated training, you'll learn how to use formulas to manipulate text, work with dates and times, lookup values with VLOOKUP and INDEX & MATCH, count and sum with criteria, dynamically rank values, and create dynamic ranges. You'll also learn how to troubleshoot, trace errors, and fix problems. Instant access. See details here.

Download 100+ Important Excel Functions

Get over 100 Excel Functions you should know in one handy PDF.

Excel foundational video course
Excel Pivot Table video training course
Excel formulas and functions video training course
Excel Charts video training course
Video training for Excel Tables
Dynamic Array Formulas