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Get first text value in a row

To retrieve the first text value from a one-row range, a formula based on the HLOOKUP function would help you.

get first text value in a row 1

How to retrieve the first text value in a row with HLOOKUP?

To retrieve the first text value in the row as shown above, you can just use the HLOOKUP function together with the wildcard character - asterisk (*) to match the first text value.

Generic syntax

=HLOOKUP("*",range,1,FALSE)

√ Note: The lookup value "*" can match any number of characters. It does not match errors, numbers or Boolean values (TURE and FALSE).

  • range: The list (one-row range) where to return the first text value from.

To retrieve the first text value in the row, please copy or enter the formula below in the cell J6, and press Enter to get the result:

=HLOOKUP("*",B4:J4,1,FALSE)

get first text value in a row 2

Explanation of the formula

HLOOKUP("*",B4:J4,1,FALSE)

  • The range_lookup FALSE asks the HLOOKUP function to perform an exact match.
  • The index_num 1 indicates that the value will be returned from the 1st row of the range B4:J4.
  • The lookup value "*" can match any number of characters. It does not match errors, numbers or Boolean values (TURE and FALSE).
  • HLOOKUP will now retrieve the first text value from the 1st row of the range B4:B15, which is extendoffice.

To retrieve the first text value in a row with INDEX and MATCH, please use the formula below: See the instruction here.

=INDEX(B4:J4,MATCH("*",B4:J4,0))


Related functions

Excel HLOOKUP function

The HLOOKUP function looks up a value in top row of a table or an array from left to right horizontally, then returns a value in the same column from the specified row. The HLOOKUP function can return approximate or exact matching, and use wildcards * or ? for finding partial matches.


Related Formulas

Get last text value in a column

Suppose you have a list of data that contains numbers, dates, text, errors and Boolean values (TRUE and FALSE), to get the last text value from the list, a formula based on the INDEX and MATCH functions can do you a favor.

Get first non-blank value in a column or row

To retrieve the first value (the first cell that is not blank, ignoring errors) from a one-column or one-row range, you can use a formula based on INDEX and MATCH functions. However, if you don’t want to ignore the errors from your range, you can add an ISBLANK function to the above formula.

Get first numeric value in a column or row

To retrieve the first numeric value from a one-column or one-row range, you can use a formula based on the INDEX, MATCH and ISNUMBER functions.

Retrieve information associated with lowest n values

To retrieve data that are corresponding to the smallest, 2nd smallest, or nth smallest value in a list, table or row in Excel, you can use an INDEX and MATCH formula together with the SMALL function.

Get information corresponding to maximum value

To retrieve data that are corresponding to the maximum value in a list, table or row in Excel, you can use an INDEX and MATCH formula together with the MAX function.


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