# How to VLOOKUP Across Multiple Sheets in Excel: Examples Included

Do you have multiple sheets in Excel and need to find and extract data quickly? ``` VLOOKUP ``` is a powerful function in Excel that allows you to search for and retrieve data from a specific column in a table. However, when you have multiple sheets, using ``` VLOOKUP ``` can be a bit tricky. In this article, we will show you how to use ``` VLOOKUP ``` across multiple sheets in Excel with examples.

When you have data spread across multiple sheets, it can be time-consuming to manually search for and retrieve the information you need. The good news is that ``` VLOOKUP ``` can be used to search for data across multiple sheets, saving you time and effort. In this article, we will walk you through the steps to use VLOOKUP across multiple sheets and provide examples to help you understand how it works.

## Understanding VLOOKUP function

If you work with Excel, you may have heard of the ``` VLOOKUP ``` function. This function is a powerful tool that allows you to search for specific information in a table and return related data from another table. ``` VLOOKUP ``` is an acronym for “ vertical lookup ,” which means that it searches for data in a column and returns data from the same row in another column.

The ``` VLOOKUP ``` function has four arguments:

``=VLOOKUP(lookup_value, table_array, col_index_num, [range_lookup])``

The ``` lookup_value ``` is the value you want to search for in the first column of the ``` table_array ``` .

The ``` table_array ``` is the range containing the data you want to search.

The ``` col_index_num ``` is the column number in the ``` table_array ``` that contains the data you want to return.

The ``` range_lookup ``` is an optional argument that specifies whether you want an exact match or an approximate match.

Here is an example of how the ``` VLOOKUP ``` function works:

If you want to find the price of Widget B, you would use the ``` VLOOKUP ``` function as follows:

``=VLOOKUP("002",A2:C4,3,FALSE)``

The ``` VLOOKUP ``` function would search for ``` "002" ``` in the first column of the ``` table_array ``` and return the value in the third column of the same row, which is ``` 15.00 ``` .

## VLOOKUP Across Multiple Sheets

If the ``` VLOOKUP ``` formula is to be written in a different sheet to where the data lookup table resides then the only change that need happen is the reference to the ``` table_array ``` .

Instead of using a range written as ``` A2:C4 ``` the range would now include the name of the sheet.

Therefore, the new formula would look at follows if the ``` table_array ``` is located on ``` Data ``` sheet:

``=VLOOKUP("002",Data!A2:C4,3,FALSE)``

Here’s how this would look in the Excel spreadsheet:

What if the ``` lookup_value ``` is referencing a value contained in a different sheet?

The same principle applies. Just insert the reference being looked up in the first parameter. Let’s assume the reference is stored in a ``` Settings ``` sheet:

## Tips And Tricks

Here are some tips and tricks to make the process even smoother:

• Use named ranges: Instead of typing in cell ranges manually, consider using named ranges to make your formulas easier to read and maintain.
• Use absolute cell references: When using ``` VLOOKUP ``` across multiple sheets, use absolute cell references for the ``` table_array ``` argument especially if the ``` VLOOKUP ``` function is being copied in the other sheets.
• Use ``` IFERROR ``` : If the ``` VLOOKUP ``` formula can’t find a match, it will return the ``` #N/A ``` error. To make your spreadsheet more user-friendly, consider wrapping your ``` VLOOKUP ``` formula in an ``` IFERROR ``` function. This will replace the error with a custom message or value.

## VLOOKUP Over Multiple Sheets: Summary

Using ``` VLOOKUP ``` across multiple sheets in Excel can be a powerful tool to help you sort through large amounts of data quickly and efficiently. By organising your data into separate sheets and using ``` VLOOKUP ``` to reference the information you need, you can save time and reduce errors in your work.

Remember to take care when setting up your ``` VLOOKUP ``` formulas, especially when it comes to specifying the correct range and column index. Using named ranges and tables can help make this process easier and more intuitive.

Overall, ``` VLOOKUP ``` across multiple sheets is a valuable tool for anyone working with large amounts of data in Excel. With practice and attention to detail, you can use this feature to streamline your work and make more informed decisions based on your data.

Ryan Sheehy
Ryan has been dabbling in code since the late '90s when he cut his teeth exploring VBA in Excel. Having his eyes opened with the potential of automating repetitive tasks, he expanded to Python and then moved over to scripting languages such as HTML, CSS, Javascript and PHP.