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Excel 2019: Use a Wildcard in VLOOKUP

August 08, 2019 - by Bill Jelen

Excel Use a Wildcard in VLOOKUP. Photo Credit: Josh Appel at

You can do a sort of fuzzy match with VLOOKUP. If you aren‘t sure if your lookup table will contain Apple, Apple Computer, or Apple Computer Inc, you can use =VLOOKUP("Apple*",Table,2,False), and Excel will find the first item in the lookup table that starts with Apple.

Thanks to -Khalif John Clark.


Microsoft Labs offers a free Fuzzy Lookup add-in for Excel. See Excel 2019: Use the Fuzzy Lookup Tool from Microsoft Labs

Title Photo: Josh Appel at

Bill Jelen is the author / co-author of
Excel Dynamic Arrays Straight to the Point 2nd Edition

Fifteen months after Dynamic Arrays debuted for Office Insiders, the functions are being released to General Availability. This second edition of the book has been updated with new examples: see how Dynamic Arrays make XLOOKUP better. The chapter on the logic behind arrays has been expanded.