How to lookup a value and return cell address in Excel?

In general, you will get the cell value when you use formula to look up a value in Excel. But here I will introduce some formulas to lookup a value and return the relative cell address.

Lookup a value and return cell address with formula

arrow blue right bubble Lookup a value and return cell address with formula

To lookup a value and return corresponding cell address instead of cell value in Excel, you can use the below formulas.

Formula 1 To return the cell absolute reference

For example, you have a range of data as below screenshot shown, and you want to lookup product AA and return the relative cell absolute reference.

1. Select a cell and type AA into it, here I type AA into cell A26. See screenshot:

2. Then type this formula =CELL("address",INDEX($A$18:$A$24,MATCH(A26,$A$18:$A$24,1))) in the cell adjacent to cell A26 (the cell you typed AA), then press Shift + Ctrl + Enter keys and you will get the relative cell reference. See screenshot:


1. In the above formula, A18:A24 is the column range that your lookup value is in, A26 is the lookup value.

2. This formula only can find the first relative cell address which matches the lookup value.

Formula 2 To return the row number of the cell value in the table

For instance, you have data as below screenshot shown, you want to lookup product BB and return all of its cell addresses in the table.

1. Type BB into a cell, here I type BB into cell A10. See screenshot:

2. In the cell adjacent to the cell A10 (the cell you typed BB), type this formula =SMALL(IF($A$10=$A$2:$A$8, ROW($A$2:$A$8)-ROW($A$2)+1), ROW(1:1)), and press Shift + Ctrl + Enter keys, then drag the auto fill handle down to apply this formula until appears #NUM!. see screenshot:

3. Then you can delete #NUM!. See screenshot:


1. In this formula, A10 indicates the lookup value, and A2: A8 is the column range that your lookup value is in.

2. With this formula, you only can get the row numbers of the relative cells in the table except table header.

Batch Convert formula reference to absolute, relative, column absolute or Row Absolute

Sometimes, you may want to convert the formula reference to absolute, but in Excel, the shortcuts only can convert the references one by one whihc may waste time while there are hundreds of formulas. The Convert Reference of Kutools for Excel can batch convert the references in select cells to relative, absolute as you need.   Click for full-featured 30 days free trial!
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  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    David Green · 1 months ago
    Hi Master,

    What formula for search "value" belong to which sheet , address in excel file with 100 worksheet tab
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    bsk · 2 years ago
    my formula results with file name, sheet name and then cell reference something like this [CALCULATION.xlsx]Sheet2!$H$3. I want to use offset function into this. but doesnt work out. can u help?
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Sunny · 2 years ago
      Sorry I have no idear.
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Matt · 2 years ago
    Thanks. I want to look up a value in a matrix, not an array. So for example:

    A B C D E
    1) 6 6 7 5 2
    2) 9 8 9 5 2
    3) 7 2 0 2 3
    4) 5 4 2 7 7
    5) 3 3 8 9 8

    7) 0

    I'm looking for a formula that would return "C" and "3" as the column and row, respectively, if I type in "0" into the specified cell, and specific the matrix of numbers.

    So something like =RETURN ROW AND COLUMN VALUE OF(A7, A1:E5)
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    RAKESH SHARMA · 2 years ago
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Sunny · 2 years ago
      Sorry I do not understand your question.
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Manuel · 2 years ago
    Nice article, I was looking for how to do it but looking up for a value in a whole 2-dimensional range (matrix) instead of an array. Any ideas?
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Sunny · 2 years ago
      Sorry that I did not understand your question. What do you want to return aftering lookup? The cell address or other value? Could you give an exampel(with some screenshots is better) or more details about your problem?
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    Levent · 4 years ago
    Advanced Excel Training