Excel users might be familiar with VLOOKUP function as a useful tool to look up for value is needed. Besides, Excel also provides HLOOKUP function to look up for text value across a range in a column.

HLOOKUP has almost the exact the same syntax, structure expect that HLOOKUP is occurring horizontally. HLOOKUP function can be used to search and retrieve data from a specific row in a table. This post will demonstrate how to use HLOOKUP combine with an asterisk (*) wildcard to find the first text value in each row of a table.

# Get first text value with HLOOKUP

## Generic Formula

`=`

**HLOOKUP(“*”,range,1,FALSE)**

## Example

Considering the example below, the formula in G2 is: **=HLOOKUP(“*”,C2:F2,1,0)**

*Figure 1 – Get first text value with HLOOKUP*

## Explanation

Let’s break formula down into parts:

The lookup value is **“*”**. This wildcard matches one or more text values.

Range** C2:F2** is the table array from which to retrieve data. This array changes as the formula is extended down column G.

The row index is **1** because the range contains one row.

The range lookup is set **0**, which is **FALSE**, to force an exact match. This is required when using wildcards with HLOOKUP.

This formula finds and returns the first text value found from column C to column F in each row.

## Notes

- This formula just works with text value, not numeric values, because the asterisk wildcard matches the only text. So if a cell contains numeric values, the formula will show the next cell that contains text values. You can use INDEX and MATCH function to match numeric values.

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