- lookup - The lookup value.
- lookup_array - The array or range to search.
- return_array - The array or range to return.
- not_found - [optional] Value to return if no match found.
- match_mode - [optional] 0 = exact match (default), -1 = exact match or next smallest, 1 = exact match or next larger, 2 = wildcard match.
- search_mode - [optional] 1 = search from first (default), -1 = search from last, 2 = binary search ascending, -2 = binary search descending.
How to use
XLOOKUP is a modern replacement for the VLOOKUP function. It is a flexible and versatile function that can be used in a wide variety of situations. XLOOKUP can find values in vertical or horizontal ranges, can perform approximate and exact matches, and supports wildcards (* ?) for partial matches. In addition, XLOOKUP can perform a reverse search, and a super-fast binary search. Watch the video below for a basic example of XLOOKUP in action:
Not found message
When XLOOKUP can't find a match, it returns the #N/A error, like other match functions in Excel. Unlike the other match functions, XLOOKUP supports an optional argument called not_found that can be used to override the #N/A error when it would otherwise appear. Typical values for not_found might be "Not found", "No match", "No result", etc. When providing a value for not_found, enclose the text in double quotes ("").
Note: Be careful if you supply an empty string ("") for not_found. If no match is found, XLOOKUP will display nothing instead of #N/A. If you want to see the #N/A error when a match isn't found, omit the argument entirely.
By default, XLOOKUP will perform an exact match. Match behavior is controlled by an optional argument called match_type, which has the following options:
|0 (default)||Exact match. Will return #N/A if no match.|
|-1||Exact match or the next smaller item.|
|1||Exact match or the next larger item.|
|2||Wildcard match (*, ?, ~)|
By default, XLOOKUP will start matching from the first data value. Search behavior is controlled by an optional argument called search_mode, which provides the following options:
|1 (default)||Search from the first value|
|-1||Search from the last value (reverse)|
|2||Binary search values sorted in ascending order|
|-2||Binary search values sorted in descending order|
Binary searches are very fast, but data must be sorted as required. If data is not sorted properly, a binary search can return invalid results that look perfectly normal. Detailed example here.
Example #1 - basic exact match
By default, XLOOKUP will perform an exact match. In the example below, XLOOKUP is used to retrieve Sales based on an exact match on the Movie. The formula in H5 is:
Example #2 - basic approximate match
To enable an approximate match, provide a value for the match_mode argument. In the example below, XLOOKUP is used to calculate a discount based on quantity, which requires an approximate match. The formula in F5 supplies -1 for match_mode to enable approximate match with "exact match or next smallest" behavior:
Example #3 - multiple values
XLOOKUP can return more than one value at the same time for the same match. The example below shows how XLOOKUP can be used to return three values with a single formula. The formula in C5 is:
Notice the return array (C8:E15) includes 3 columns: First, Last, and Department. All three values are returned and spill into the range C5:E5.
Example #4 - two-way lookup
XLOOKUP can be used to perform a two-way lookup, by nesting one XLOOKUP inside another. In the example below, the "inner" XLOOKUP retrieves an entire row (all values for Glass), which is handed off to the "outer" XLOOKUP as the return array. The outer XLOOKUP finds the appropriate group (B) and returns the corresponding value (17.25) as the final result.
Example #5 - not found message
Like other lookup functions, if XLOOKUP does not find a value, it returns the #N/A error. To display a custom message instead of #N/A, provide a value for the optional "not_found" argument, enclosed in double quotes (""). For example, to display "Not found" when no matching movie is found, based on the worksheet below, use:
You can customize this message as you like: "No match", "Movie not found", etc.
Example #6 - wildcard match
XLOOKUP supports wildcards to enable partial match lookups. Set the match_mode argument to 2 to enable wildcards in XLOOKUP. In the example below, XLOOKUP is configured to perform a "contains substring" match on the Title of the books listed in column B. The search string is entered in cell G4 and the formula in cell G6 is:
Example #7 - complex criteria
With the ability to handle arrays natively, XLOOKUP can be used with complex criteria. In the example below, XLOOKUP is matching the first record where: the account begins with "x" and region is "east" and the month is not April:
Example #8 - Binary search
XLOOKUP has a binary search mode option that performs lookups very quickly. To enable binary search mode, data must be sorted in ascending or descending order. If values are sorted in ascending order, use the value 2 for search_mode. If values are sorted in descending order, use the value -2. Below is the generic syntax to enable binary search mode for an exact match lookup:
=XLOOKUP(A1,lookup_array,return_array,,0,2) // binary search A-Z =XLOOKUP(A1,lookup_array,return_array,,0,-2) // binary search Z-A
For a more detailed example, see XLOOKUP binary search.
XLOOKUP offers several important advantages compared to VLOOKUP:
- XLOOKUP can lookup data to the right or left of lookup values
- XLOOKUP defaults to an exact match
- XLOOKUP can work with vertical and horizontal data
- XLOOKUP can perform a reverse search (last to first)
- XLOOKUP can return entire rows or columns, not just one value
For more details see XLOOKUP vs VLOOKUP.
- XLOOKUP can work with both vertical and horizontal arrays.
- XLOOKUP will return #N/A if the lookup value is not found.
- Like the INDEX function, XLOOKUP returns a reference as a result.
- The size of the lookup_array must be compatible with the return_array, or XLOOKUP will return #VALUE!
- If XLOOKUP points to an Excel Table in an external workbook, the other workbook must be open or XLOOKUP will return a #REF! error.