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How to easily rank numbers skip blank cells in Excel?

In general, if there are some blank cells in a list, while you applying the Rank function to rank the list, the ranking results of blank cells will be displayed as errors. But are there any ways that can rank values skipping the blank cells and just leave empty as below screenshot shown? In this article, I introduce some formulas to quickly rank values ignore the empty cells in Excel.
doc rank skip blanks 1

Rank values skip blank cells in ascending order

Rank values skip blank cells in descending order


arrow blue right bubble Rank values skip blank cells in ascending order

To rank values skip blank cells ascending, you need to create two helper columns first.

1. Select a blank cell next to the list you want to rank, B2 for instances, type this formula =IF(ISBLANK($A2),"",VALUE($A2&"."&(ROW()-ROW($B$2)))), and drag auto fill handle down to fill cells with this formula. See screenshot:
doc rank skip blanks 2

In the formula, A2 is the first cell of the list you want to rank, B2 is the first cell you place the formula.

2. Then go to next cell, C2 for example, type this formula =SMALL($B$2:$B$8,ROW()-ROW($C$1)) and drag fill handle down to fill cells with this formula. See screenshot:
doc rank skip blanks 3

In the formula, B2:B8 is the range which uses first formula, and C1 is the cell above the cell you apply this formula.

3. In the cell D2, you can rank the values in ascending order. Type this formula =IFERROR(MATCH($B2,$C$2:$C$8,0),""), drag fill handle down to apply this formula to the cells. See screenshot:
doc rank skip blanks 4

In this formula, B2 is the first cell which applies the first formula, C2:C8 is the range applies the second formula.


arrow blue right bubble Rank values skip blank cells in descending order

If you want to rank numbers ignore blanks in descending order, you just need to apply one formula.

Select a cell which will rank numbers, and then type this formula, =IF(ISNA(RANK(A2,A$2:A$8)),"",RANK(A2,A$2:A$8)), drag autofill handle down to the cells you need to apply this formula.

In the formula, A2 is the first cell of the list you want to rank, A2:A8 is the list you need to rank.
doc rank skip blanks 5

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Comments (2)
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This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
How would you do this if your source numbers have decimals?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
If you want to sort numbers with decimals, you can take refere to this article https://www.extendoffice.com/documents/excel/3662-excel-sort-decimal-numbers.html
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