The **Excel HLOOKUP function** searches for a certain value in a row and returns a value from a different row in the same column.

**Tip:** If you are using Excel for Microsoft 365, try the **XLOOKUP** function, an improved version of Excel lookup functions that work in any direction and returns exact matches by default without optional arguments.

## How to use the HLOOKUP function in Excel?

Use HLOOKUP if your table array is **transposed** (variables headers listed in a row). The HLOOKUP function searches for a given lookup value in the first row of a table. When it finds a match, the function returns a value from the row shown in that column. HLOOKUP function supports wildcards to find partial matches.

First, take a look at the **syntax** and **function arguments**.

### Syntax:

The HLOOKUP function uses **three required** and **one optiona**l argument.

**=HLOOKUP(lookup_value, table_array, row_index, [**range_lookup**]**

### Arguments

**lookup_value**is the value that you want to look up;**table_array**is the range from which you want to find and retrieve data**row_index**is the row number containing the return value**range_lookup**is**FALSE**(or 0) for an exact match. Use**TRUE**(or 1) for an approximate match.**The default value is TRUE.**

## HLOOKUP Function Examples

In this section, we will demonstrate HLOOKUP examples.

### Example #1 – Exact match

With an HLOOKUP function, we search the product name in the **data table** and return the value from the second (Price) row.

Create a **named range** first! Select the table array. This range is where you are looking for the lookup value. **In this case, select range G4:J5**. Locate the **name box** and type ‘**data**‘.

From now, the range G4:J5 refers to ‘data’.

**Type the formula below in D3:**

**=HLOOKUP(B3,data,2,0)**

- B3 is the lookup value (Apple) that we are trying to match in the table array (data).
- Table array is the second argument; in this case, use the named range ‘data’, to simplify the formula
- The row index is 2. This row contains the return value we are looking for
- We find an exact match, so
**use the ‘0’ (or FALSE)****logical value**as the 4th, optional argument

**Result:**

### Example #2 – Approximate Match

Sometimes, we need to use an approximate match instead of an exact match. In the example, we want to create categories based on sales. **Therefore, the lookup value is “A” in cell C3.**

The ‘**data**‘ named range is the same as we mentioned in the first example: **G4:J5**

Now change the 4th argument to TRUE (or 1):

**=HLOOKUP(C3,data,2,1)**

or use the function with the required three arguments only:

**=HLOOKUP(C3,data,2)**

Here is the result if you are using an approximate match:

The lookup value is 308, and the range_lookup argument is TRUE. **Excel evaluates the formula, and no exact match is found.**

**In this case, the HLOOKUP function gets the nearest value (300) that is less than the lookup value** and **returns with “A”.**

### HLOOKUP Function: range lookup argument

It’s time to summarize what we have learned about the range_lookup optional argument:

- The range_lookup helps you decide: are you trying to match an exact lookup value TRUE or something similar FALSE. The default value is TRUE, which allows a non-exact match.
- Apply the FALSE value if you need to require an exact match.
- If range_lookup is TRUE, and HLOOKUP does not find an exact match, the function will return the largest value that is less than the lookup value.
- HLOOKUP returns an exact value if one exists, even if you use TRUE as the last argument.
- If range_lookup is TRUE, you must sort the lookup values in the first row of the table in ascending order. Otherwise, HLOOKUP may return an unexpected value.
- In the case of the FALSE argument, it is not necessary to sort the table.

**Additional resources**