Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Highlighting Cells Containing Specific Text.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 17, 2018)
You can use the conditional formatting feature in Excel to help draw attention to cells that contain specific text in which you are interested. For instance, if you have a range of cells and you want to know which ones contain the letters "shawn," then you can do the following:
Figure 1. The Conditional Formatting dialog box.
Figure 2. The Format Cells dialog box.
You can make this approach even more general-purpose in nature by specifying a cell that contains what you want to search for. For instance, if you type "shawn" in cell F7, then you could replace the formula in step 4 with the following:
Now, you can search for something different just by changing the characters in cell F7.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2671) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Highlighting Cells Containing Specific Text.
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