Compare two lists

How to compare two lists in Microsoft Excel

One method to compare a lists is to use the match function. The Match function combined with ISNA and an IF staement provides a great solution when checking one list against another.

Match Function

The match function works by checking an item against a list, if the item is present in the lists the Match function returns the position the item apears in the list. If the item is not in the list the Match function returns N/A.

match function to compare lists

ISNA Function

The ISNA function returns True or False is the cell referenced has N/A in it.

ISNA function to compare lists

IF Function

The IF function has three elements in its basic form. A test, what to do if that test is true and what to do if that test is false.

IF function example to compare lists
IF function to compare lists

Combine Functions

All three functions can be combined into one formula rather than have three separate columns.

combine function to compare lists

Last_Week referenced in the formula above is a named range. If you want to compare two lists, the Match function combined with ISNA and IF is just one method but my preferred method. You can just use the Match function on its own and sort N/A cells, if that makes the formula easier to understand.


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