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How to Search in Google Sheets: 3 Quick and Easy Options

May 25, 2022

There are so many different functions available in a Google Sheets spreadsheet. You can match entire cell contents, find and replace data quickly, or create a custom formula or pivot table to display large ranges of data.

However, with such large amounts of data on offer in a Google Sheets spreadsheet, it can be difficult to find the information you need. Learning how to search in Google can help you understand a particular pattern, make an exact match, and various other options.

Learning how to search in Google Sheets can greatly improve how you use Google Sheets and what you are capable of achieving on the Google Sheets app.

The good news is that once you learn how to use the Find and Replace feature on Google Sheets, you will be able to use that search function to find any information you want.

Search Using the Find Option to Highlight All Matching Cells in the Sheet

If your Google Sheets file contains cells with text in it, and you are keen to search Google Sheets to find cells that possess a certain text string, the find option is the perfect option.

Here are the steps you need to take to search in Google Sheets via the find function:

Begin by opening your Google Sheets worksheet that contains your data. Next, press Control and F if you are on Windows, or Command and F if you are on a Mac. You will notice this opens a small find and replace box located on the top right-hand side of your Google Sheet. Within this box, type the term you wish to find, also referred to as the search string.

These steps will show you every cell in your Google Sheets document that has that matching text string.

From there, you can sift through each cell one by one or use the arrows located in the find field. If you don't like this option, you can also visually check the results, as every matching cell will now be green.

This is the fasted method you have at your disposal to discover any cells that match your text string.

Search Using Find and Replace

The other search option available to you in Google Sheets is to search in Google Sheets with the Find and Replace feature.

If you want to find specific cells containing something like a first name, there are a few steps you can follow:

  • Head to the Edit tab, which is located in the Menu bar

  • Choose the Find and Replace feature

  • Clicking on the find and replace option will open the Find and Replace box. If you are feeling confident with your Google spreadsheets skills, you can open this box without heading to the edit menu by hitting Control and H on a PC or Command and H on a Mac.

  • Once you are on the Find and Replace section, look for the input box next to the word "Find." Here, type the word you want to quickly search and press find.

  • Your Google Sheets document will then show you the first cell that contains your chosen word in the entire worksheet.

  • If your chosen specific word occurs in other areas of your active sheet, clicking find every time will show you all the cells that contain that word within your given range.

  • Once you hit the last example of this word within your Google Sheet, a message will appear when you click to find that says "No more results. Looping back around" at the foot of your dialog box.

  • If you click find after seeing this message, your searches will start at the beginning again.

  • Once you are happy with your results and you want to close the Find and Replace menu, select Done and close the menu.

How to Search In Google Sheets: Summary and Key Takeaways

Now you know how to search in Google Sheets! From the drop-down menu on offer, you can find any search results you want from a specific range and locate regular expressions if they are present.

Searching a current sheet is a great way to establish and remove unwanted duplications before sharing a document with colleges or highlighting reoccurring patterns that could improve your business's performance.

If you liked the advice offered in this article, be sure to check out some of the related articles below!

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the search in Google Sheets?

Simply follow the above steps! Begin by opening your Google Sheets worksheet that contains your data. Next, press CTRL F if you are on Windows or Command and F if you are on a Mac. You will notice this opens a small find and replace box located in the upper right corner of your Google Sheet. Within this box, type the term you wish to find, also referred to as the search string.

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