The Excel FIND Function

Related Function:
SEARCH function

Function Description

The Excel FIND function returns the position of a specified character or sub-string within a supplied text string.

The function is case-sensitive. If you want to perform a non-case-sensitive search, use the Excel Search function instead.

The syntax of the Find function is:

FIND( find_text, within_text, [start_num] )

Where the function arguments are:

find_text - The character or sub-string that you wish to find.
within_text - The text string that is to be searched.
[start_num] -

An optional argument that specifies the position in the within_text string, from which the search should begin.

If omitted, this takes on the default value of 1 (i.e. begin the search at the start of the within_text string)

If the supplied find_text is found, the Find function returns a number that represents its position in the within_text. If the supplied find_text is not found, the function returns the Excel #VALUE! error.

Find Function Examples

In column B of the following spreadsheet, the Excel Find function is used to find various characters in the text string "Original Text".


  A B
1 Original Text =FIND( "T", A1 )
2 Original Text =FIND( "t", A2 )
3 Original Text =FIND( "i", A3 )
4 Original Text =FIND( "i", A4, 4 )


  A B
1 Original Text 10
2 Original Text 13
3 Original Text 3
4 Original Text 5

Note that, in the above spreadsheet:

For further examples of the Excel Find function, see the split string in Excel page.

Also, further details of the Find function are provided on the Microsoft Office website.

Excel Find Function Error

If you get an error from the Excel Find function this is likely to be the #VALUE! error:

Common Error


Occurs if either:

  • The supplied find_text is not found in the supplied within_text string;
  • The supplied [start_num] is less than zero or is greater than the length of the supplied within_text string.