# Lookup functions are used to lookup specific values from elsewhere in your workbook and return information from corresponding rows and columns.

Lookup functions are used to lookup specific values from elsewhere in your worksheet – or from a different worksheet altogether – and return information from corresponding rows and columns.

Lookup functions can be especially useful when searching for values in worksheets with hundreds or thousands of rows and columns.

## How to Use Lookup Functions

In the examples below, we’ll take a look at some commonly used lookup functions. For documentation on every lookup function supported by Spreadsheet.com, reference our section on Lookup functions.

When using functions in your workbook, you can input and edit formulas either directly in the cell, or from the formula bar between the worksheet toolbar and the spreadsheet grid. Learn more in our article on Creating and Editing Formulas.

### How to Perform a Vertical Lookup (VLOOKUP)

The VLOOKUP function is used to search for a value within a range. VLOOKUP looks for the specified value in the first column of the range and returns a value from a different column in the matching row.

In the example above, we’ve input a VLOOKUP function in Cell F6 that searches the data table on the left for the value in Cell E6 and then returns the corresponding value from Column C. Let’s take a look at our VLOOKUP function more closely and break it down step by step:

`=VLOOKUP(E6,A2:C6,3)`
1. The function looks at the value in Cell E6.
2. The function looks for that value in the first column of the range A2:C6.
3. From the row where the function identifies that value, it returns the corresponding value from the third column in the specified range.

If we change the lookup value in Cell E6, the VLOOKUP function output will update accordingly.

In the example above, we’ve changed the value in Cell E6 from “Account 2” to “Account 3”. The VLOOKUP formula hasn’t changed, but the output is now returning the value from Column C in the Account 3 row.

Alternatively, we can change the index number in the VLOOKUP function’s third argument to return a value from a different column.

In this example, we’ve changed the index from “3” to “2” so that the VLOOKUP function returns a value from the second column in our range, the Region column.

VLOOKUP functions have many uses, and can be especially useful when searching for values in worksheets with hundreds or thousands of rows and columns. Like other functions, they can even be used to reference data from other worksheets.

If VLOOKUP doesn’t work well for your data and your needs, take a look at HLOOKUP and XLOOKUP. These are similar lookup formulas, but search through data in different ways.