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Search and highlight search results in Excel

In Excel, you can use the Find and Replace function to find a specific value, but do you know how to highlight the search results after searching? In this article, I introduce two different ways to help you search and highlight search results at the meanwhile in Excel.

Search and highlight search results by the VBA code

Search and highlight search results by the Conditional Formatting


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Search and highlight search results by the VBA code

In Excel, there is a VBA code that can help you search a value and then highlight the search results.

1. Enable the sheet you want to search and highlight results, press Alt + F11 keys to open Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.

2. Click Insert > Module, and paste below code to the new module.

VBA: Highlight search results

Sub FindRange()
'UpdatebyExtendoffice20190813
Dim xRg As Range
Dim xFRg As Range
Dim xStrAddress As String
Dim xVrt As Variant
xVrt = Application.InputBox(prompt:="Search:", Title:="www.extendoffice.com")
If xVrt <> "" Then
Set xFRg = ActiveSheet.Cells.Find(what:=xVrt)
If xFRg Is Nothing Then
MsgBox prompt:="Cannot find this value", Title:="www.extendoffice.com"
Exit Sub
End If
xStrAddress = xFRg.Address
Set xRg = xFRg
Do
Set xFRg = ActiveSheet.Cells.FindNext(After:=xFRg)
Set xRg = Application.Union(xRg, xFRg)
Loop Until xFRg.Address = xStrAddress
If xRg.Count > 0 Then
xRg.Interior.ColorIndex = 8
xRsp = MsgBox(prompt:="Do you want to cancel highlighting?", Title:="www.extendoffice.com", Buttons:=vbQuestion + vbOKCancel)

If xRsp = vbOK Then xRg.Interior.ColorIndex = xlNone
End If
End If
End Sub

doc search highlight search result 1

3. Press F5 key, then a searching box pops out for you to type the specified value you search.
doc search highlight search result 2

4. Click OK, the matched results have been highlighted with a background color. Also, a dialog pops out to ask you if cancel the highlighting. Click OK to cancel the highlighting and close the dialog, click Cancel to keep the highlighting and close the dialog.
doc search highlight search result 3

Note:

1. If there is no matched value found, a dialog pops out to remind you.
doc search highlight search result 4

2. This VBA works for the whole active sheet and case insensitive.

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Search and highlight search results by the Conditional Formatting

In Excel, the Conditional Formatting function also can automatically highlight the search results.

Supposing the data and search box display as below screenshot, now please do as below steps:
doc search highlight search result 5

1. Select the range you want to search in, and click Home > Conditional Formatting > New Rule.
doc search highlight search result 6

2. In the New Formatting Rule dialog, select Use a formula to determine which cells to format in the Select a Rule Type section, then go to the text box under Format values where this formula is true, type =AND($E$2<>"",$E$2=A4).

E2 is the cell you will place the search value, and A4 is the first cell in the range where you search in.
doc search highlight search result 7

3. Click Format button, go to the Format Cells dialog, under Fill tab, choose one color as you need. Click OK > OK to close the dialogs.
doc search highlight search result 8

From now on, when you enter the keyword in Cell E2, the search results will be automatically highlighted in the specified range.


Sample File

Click to download the sample file

Other Operations (Articles) Related To Conditioanl Formatting

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Now this tutorial will tell you some handy and easy methods to quickly count or sum the cells by color with conditional formatting in Excel.

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