Quick, clean, and to the point

XLOOKUP wildcard match example

Excel formula: XLOOKUP wildcard match example
Generic formula 
=XLOOKUP(value,lookup,return,"not found",2)

To perform a partial match with XLOOKUP, supply 2 for the match mode argument to allow wildcards. In the example shown, the formula in H7 is:

=TRANSPOSE((XLOOKUP(H4,D5:D15,B5:E15,"Not found",2)))

which performs a wildcard match with the value in H4 and returns all 4 fields as the result. The TRANSPOSE function is optional and used here only to convert the result from XLOOKUP to a vertical array.


Working from the inside out, XLOOKUP is configured to find the value in H4 in the Last name column, and return all fields. In order to support wildcards, match_mode is provided as 2:

XLOOKUP(H4,D5:D15,B5:E15,2) // match Last, return all fields
  • The lookup_value comes from cell H4
  • The lookup_array is the range D5:D15, which contains Last names
  • The return_array is B5:E15, which contains all all fields
  • The not_found argument is set to "Not found"
  • The match_mode is is 2, to allow wildcards
  • The search_mode is not provided and defaults to 1 (first to last)

Since H4 contains "corr*", XLOOKUP finds the first Last name beginning with "corr" and returns all four fields in a horizontal array:


This result is returned directly to the TRANSPOSE function:


The TRANSPOSE function changes the array from horizontal to vertical:

{648;"Sharyn";"Corriveau";"Support"} // vertical array

and the array values spill into the range H7:H10.

With implicit wildcard

In the example above, the asterisk wildcard (*) is entered explicitly into the lookup value. To pass in the wildcard implicitly, you can adjust the formula like this:

=TRANSPOSE((XLOOKUP(H4&"*",D5:D15,B5:E15,"Not found",2)))

Above, we concatenate the asterisk wildcard (*) to the value in H4 in the formula itself. This will append the asterisk to any value entered in H4, and XLOOKUP will perform a wildcard lookup.

Dynamic Array Formulas are available in Office 365 only.
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.