Excel MATCH function


The Excel MATCH function returns the relative position of an item that matches a lookup value in an array of data.

The Excel INDEX function is not commonly used on it’s own, but is very commonly used with the INDEX function as part of an INDEX MATCH formula.


=MATCH(lookup_value, lookup_array, [match_type])

Arguments (inputs)

lookup_value = the value to look for in the lookup_array

lookup_array = the array which contains the values to lookup

match_type = [optional] 1 = less than, 0 = exact match, -1 greater than

Return value

The MATCH function will return the relative value (a number) in an array that matches the lookup value.


Excel MATCH function example

In the example above the MATCH function returns the relative value from the array C6:C16 that matches the lookup value “Jones” (from cell H6). The match_type = 0 indicates we’re looking for an exact match.

=MATCH(H6, C6:C16, 0)

The function returns the value 1 because Jones is the first cell in the array C6:C16.