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How to Find the Most Frequently Occurring Text in Excel

You can count the most frequently occurring text in Excel. You can search for the most frequently occurring text using a combination of the INDEX, MODE and MATCH functions. In this tutorial, you will learn how to use these functions to find the most frequently occurring text in Excel.

How to Find the Most Frequently Occurring Text

The most frequently occurring text refers to the maximum number of the repetitiveness of a particular text in a string. You can find it using the INDEX, MODE and MATCH functions. The generic function to find the most frequently occurring text is,

=INDEX(range, MODE(MATCH(range, range, 0 ))).

Here, we use the functions INDEX, MODE, and MATCH. The MATCH’s purpose is to match the range with itself. It takes three parameters. The first two parameters would be the same range where you want to find the most frequently occurring text. The third parameter used is 0. This performs an exact match. The MATCH function is nested inside a MODE function, which is used to find the most occurring number’s position. All these are nested inside an INDEX function to retrieve the value against the occurrence number.

Example of formula

The following example uses an employee work shift database. The names are in cells B2 to G4. To find the most frequently occurring name:

  • Go to cell H2.
  • Apply the formula,=INDEX(B2:G2,MODE(MATCH(B2:G2,B2:G2,0))) to cell H2.
  • Press Enter to apply the formula to cell H2.
  • Drag the formula from cells H2 to H4 to apply the formula to the cells below.

    Figure 1: Finding Most Frequently Occurred Text

This will show the most frequently occurring workers in column H. 

Excel offers some workarounds to work with text. One of them is to find the most frequently occurring text. The INDEX, MODE and MATCH functions help you to find the most number of times a text occurs.

Still need some help with Excel formatting or have other questions about Excel? Connect with a live Excel expert here for some 1 on 1 help. Your first session is always free. 

Are you still looking for help with Conditional Formatting? View our comprehensive round-up of Conditional Formatting tutorials here.

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