Excel allows us to lookup values from a **table_array** using the **VLOOKUP** function. This step by step tutorial will assist all levels of Excel users in using the table_array argument in an Excel VLOOKUP function.

*Figure 1. The final result of the formula*

**Syntax of the VLOOKUP formula**

The generic formula for the VLOOKUP function is:

**=****VLOOKUP****(lookup_value, table_array, col_index_num, range_lookup)**

The parameters of the VLOOKUP function are:

**lookup_value**– a value that we want to find in a table_array**table_array**– a table range in which we want to look up for a value**col_index_num**– a column number in table_array from which we would like to get a value**range_lookup**– default value is FALSE. This means that we want to find an exact match for a lookup value.

**Setting up Our Data for the Example**

Our tables consist of 2 columns: “Product ID” and “Product Description”. In column C, we want to get a Product description from the column F based on Product ID match. In this case, our table_array is the range E3:F9.

* Figure 2. Data that we will use in the example*

**Using the VLOOKUP Formula**

We want to get a product description in the cell C3, from the table_array E3:F9, based on the Product ID 103 in the cell B3.

The formula looks like:

**=VLOOKUP(B3, $E$3:$F$9, 2, FALSE)**

The **lookup_value** parameter is B3. The **table_array** is $E$3:$F$9. The range must be fixed, as it’s not changing when the formula is copied to the other cells. The **col_index_num** is 2 because we want to get a value from the second column. The** range_lookup** is FALSE.

To apply the VLOOKUP formula, we need to follow these steps:

- Select cell C3 and click on it
- Insert the formula:
`=VLOOKUP(B3, $E$3:$F$9, 2, FALSE)`

- Press enter
- Drag the formula down to the other cells in the column by clicking and dragging the little “+” icon at the bottom-right of the cell.

*Figure 3. *Using the VLOOKUP formula

The function returns “Product C” in F3 as this is the description for the Product ID 103 from C3 in the table_array.

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