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string – Find exact substring in cell using excel formula

Posted by: admin May 14, 2020 Leave a comment


I have the string “L5+L6+L7+L10” in a cell, and then I have a column with the values L1, L2, … , L10 on each cell. I need to know which of those values are contained in the main string but with an exact match.

To solve my problem, I tried the formula =IF(ISNUM(SEARCH(B3;$F$2));"Found";"Not found") and the results I get are shown in this image.

enter image description here

However, this results are incorrect because I need only L5, L6, L7 and L10 to be found, and not L1.

Is there a way to do so only using excel formulas?

How to&Answers:

Just add the "+" to the beginning and end of the strings inside the search:

=IF(ISNUMBER(SEARCH("+"&B3&"+","+"&$F$3&"+")),"Found","Not found")

enter image description here


The FILTERXML function can help in this case:

=SUMPRODUCT(--(B3=FILTERXML("<data><a>" & SUBSTITUTE($F$2;"+";"</a><a>") & "</a></data>";"//a")))

enter image description here


For anyone viewing question & open to VBA UDF solution

Post code into a worksheet module

Syntax of formula: =Found( Substring, Search String )

So on the excel sheet: C3 = Found(B3, F2) = Not Found

Public Function Found(SubString As Range, Within As Range) As String

Dim Arr, i As Long
Arr = Split(Within, "+")

Found = "Not Found"

For i = LBound(Arr) To UBound(Arr)
    If SubString = Arr(i) Then
        Found = "Found"
        Exit For
    End If
Next i

End Function