Nowadays, Google sheet is a very popular and widely used spreadsheet application. People are using this application because of the availability of the functions. The **FIND function** is one of the functions in Google Sheets and is widely used by users. In this article, we will demonstrate the anatomy of the** FIND function**. We will also highlight some examples of how to use the** FIND function** in Google Sheets. By the end of this article, you will know how to apply the function correctly in different cases.

**Table of Contents**hide

**A Sample of Practice Spreadsheet**

You can download the practice spreadsheet from here.

## What Is FIND Function in Google Sheets?

The** FIND function** returns the position of the first character of the string in the text. This function is case-sensitive.

#### Syntax

The syntax of the** FIND function **is as follows.

`FIND(search_for, text_to_search, [starting_at])`

** **Arguments

ARGUMENT | REQUIREMENT | FUNCTION |
---|---|---|

search_for |
Required | The function looks for these characters within the string. |

text_to_search |
Required | In this string, the text searches for the first occurrence of search_for. |

starting_at |
Optional | The position to start the search from. |

#### Output

The formula **FIND(“a”,”Here is a beautiful view”, 1)** will return **9** as the first **“a”** of **”Here is a beautiful view”** is in the 9th position.

## 5 Examples of Using FIND Function in Google Sheets

Let’s see the simple dataset below. In this dataset**,** we have some simple texts to demonstrate the use of the **FIND function** in Google Sheets with some practical examples.

Follow the examples below to see how to apply the function.

### 1. Find Position of Specific Character

In this example, we will show how to get the exact position of a specific character using the** FIND function**. We will find the 1st occurrence of the **Space (” “)** character in this case. The steps are mentioned below.

**📌 Steps:**

- First, select cell
**C5**and insert the formula to get the actual position of a specific character.

`=FIND(" ",B5)`

- After entering the formula
**drag down**or**double-click**the**fill handle**to copy the same formula into the range**C5:C11**.

### 2. Find Position of Nth Occurrence of Character

Sometimes datasets may contain the same characters multiple times in a single string. Here we will find the 1st and 2nd occurrences of the same characters using the **FIND function**. Then you can apply the example to find the nth occurrence of any character in a string.

**📌 Steps:**

- First, we will find the 1st occurrence of the space character. We will insert the formula into cell
**C5.**

`=FIND(" ",B5)`

- Then we need to copy the formula down or double-click on the
**fill handle**like before.

- Next, apply the following formula to cell
**D5**to get the 2nd occurrence of the character.

`=FIND(" ",B5,FIND(" ",B5)+1)`

- Lastly, we will
**drag down**the**fill handle**to copy the formula as shown below.

**Formula Breakdown**

➣ **FIND(” “,B5): **Here, the **FIND(” “,B5)** returns **5** i.e the position of the 1st occurrence of the character.

➣ **FIND(” “,B5,FIND(” “,B5)+1): **Here **FIND(” “,B5)+1** returns **5+1 = 6**. So the final formula becomes **FIND(” “,B5,6)**. It finds the position of the space character starting from the 6th position.

### 3. Locate Case-Sensitive Characters

The **FIND function** is a case-sensitive function. Here, we will learn how to locate case-sensitive characters using the same dataset.

**📌 Steps:**

- In this case, we will find the position of
**“h”**in the dataset. Select cell**C5**and enter the formula below.

`=FIND("h",B5)`

- After entering the formula we will drag down the
**fill handle**like before to complete the process.

- Here, cell
**C7**shows**#VALUE!**because cell**B7**does not contain any character**“h”**although cell**B7**has the character**“H”**. - As the
**FIND function**is case-sensitive it will declare no match.

### 4. Extract Characters from Beginning of Strings

Now, we will learn how to extract characters from the beginning of the string using the **FIND** and **MID** functions. The **MID function** returns the characters from the middle of a string as this function is a text function. Here we will use the same Dataset as follows.

**📌 Steps:**

- At first, we select cell
**C5**and apply the formula below.

`=MID(B5,1,FIND(" ",B5)-1)`

- Now, we will drag the formula down or double-click the
**fill handle**icon to copy the formula below.

**Formula Breakdown**

**➣ FIND(” “,B5)-1: **Here, the **FIND function** returns **5** i.e. the 1st occurrence of the space character. So the final output is **5-1 = 4**.

**➣ MID(B5,1,FIND(” “,B5)-1):** Here, the final formula becomes **MID(B5,1,4)**. So the **MID function** returns 4 characters starting from **1**.

### 5. Get Characters from End of Strings

With the same dataset here, we will learn how to get characters from the end of the strings using the **RIGHT, LEN**, and** FIND** functions. Here, the **RIGHT function** returns a particular character from the end of the string, and the **LEN function** counts the total characters of a string.

**📌 Steps:**

- First, enter the following formula in cell
**C5**as shown in the following picture.

`=RIGHT(B5,LEN(B5)-FIND(" ",B5))`

- Then drag down the
**fill handle**to copy the same formula to the cells below.

**Formula Breakdown**

**➣ FIND(” “,B5):** Here, the **FIND function** will return the 1st occurrence of the space character **(“ “)**. So the output will be **5**.

**➣ LEN(B5): **Here, the **LEN function** returns the total number of characters in cell **B5** i.e. **17**. So **LEN(B5)-FIND(” “,B5)** returns **17 – 5 = 12.**

**➣ RIGHT(B5,LEN(B5)-FIND(” “,B5)):** The final formula becomes **RIGHT(B5,12)**. Then the **RIGHT function** extracts **12** characters from the right side of the string in cell **B5**.

## What to Do When FIND Function Is Not Working in Google Sheets

The examples shown above suggest that the **FIND function** is extremely useful and we can use this function for many purposes. But sometimes it can give us problematic results. As the **FIND function** is case-sensitive, we can’t use this function when we use different cases.

- For example, the formula
**FIND(“h”,He is a mailman,1)**in cell**C7**returns**#VALUE!**Because it considers**H**as a mismatch to**h**.

`=FIND("h",B7,1)`

- In that case, we can use the
**SEARCH function**as it is not case-sensitive. The output of the**SEARCH function**is shown in the following picture.

`=SEARCH("h",B5,1)`

## Things to Remember

- The
**FIND function**is case-sensitive so we need to be careful while entering the formula. - If there are multiple same characters in different positions, then the
**FIND function**will return the position of the 1st character only.

## Conclusion

In this article, we explained the anatomy of the **FIND function**. We also explained how to use the FIND function in Google Sheets with some useful examples. Hopefully, the methods will help you to apply the function to your own dataset. Please let us know in the comment section if you have any further queries or suggestions. You may also visit our **OfficeWheel** blog to explore more Google Sheets-related articles.