VLOOKUP vs HLOOKUP

Difference Between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP

Vlookup and Hlookup both are a referencing function in excel which are used to reference a data to match with a table array or a group of data and display the output, the difference between these referencing functions is that Vlookup uses to reference with columns while Hlookup uses to reference with rows.

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VLOOKUP and HLOOKUPHLOOKUPHlookup is a referencing worksheet function that finds and matches the value from a row rather than a column using a reference. Hlookup stands for horizontal lookup, in which we search for data in rows horizontally.read more are the two important functions we use in Microsoft Excel. These functions allow us to search a range of data that are gathered from the users and provide us with the right information that we’re looking for.

The VLOOKUP function is used when we have a set of data vertically.

Example of VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP

Let’s take an example to illustrate the difference between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP.

Example Given Data

Let’s say that we have a table here where we’re given the employee ID, employee name, and performance grade.

Now, let’s say that you, as a user, have provided only employee ID. By using the VLOOKUP function, Excel will be able to provide you with the employee name and the performance grade given by HR.

Here’s how it will look like –

Function Data

Now, if we use the same data for finding out the HLOOKUP, how will it work?

The only basic difference between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP is that VLOOKUP works when the table is vertically set up, and HLOOKUP works when the setup of the table is horizontal.

Meaning, to find out the VLOOKUP function, we will see the table column-wise, whereas to find out the HLOOKUP function, we will look at a table that is set up row-wise.

So, if we need to find out the HLOOKUP, we need to look at a table like this –

Employee Information

By using HLOOKUP, we will get exactly the same result, but the table is arranged differently.

Let’s look at the formula of both. And if you notice, you would see that there’s only one difference in both the formulas, and that is the portion of row or column.

The formula of VLOOKUP is

vlookup formula

The formula of HLOOKUP is

hlookup formula

VLOOKUP vs. HLOOKUP Infographics

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Source: VLOOKUP vs HLOOKUP (wallstreetmojo.com)

Key Differences

The key differences are as follows –

  • The basic difference is while applying the VLOOKUP function. We need a vertical table. And for the HLOOKUP function to work, we need to look at a horizontal table.
  • VLOOKUP is a more popular function in Microsoft Excel, and many use it all the time. At the same time, HLOOKUP is not used frequently and only used in some cases.
  • Both are used for the same output. But their approach is different.
  • The formula of VLOOKUP is =VLOOKUP (lookup_value, table_array, col_index_number, [range_lookup]) and the formula of HLOOKUP is =HLOOKUP (lookup_value, table_array, row_index_number, [range_lookup]). If you notice closely, you will see that there’s only one difference between these two formulas, and that is of row and column.
  • VLOOKUP helps you find out the data in the leftmost column. On the other hand, HLOOKUP is used to find out the data from a range in the bottom-most rows.

Comparative Table

Basic for ComparisonVLOOKUPHLOOKUP
MeaningVLOOKUP function is used to find out particular data from a vertical spreadsheet.HLOOKUP function is used to find out particular data from a horizontal spreadsheet.
UsageVLOOKUP is one of the most used functions in excel.HLOOKUP is used but not as frequently as VLOOKUP is used.
OutputVLOOKUP provides the same output HLOOKUP provides.In terms of output, there’s no difference between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP.
Type of tableTo find out the VLOOKUP function, we need to look at a vertical table.To find out the HLOOKUP function, we need to look at a horizontal table.
Searched dataWhen the user is using VLOOKUP, she is searching for the data in the leftmost column.When the user is using HLOOKUP, she is searching for the data in the bottom-most row.
Syntax=VLOOKUP (lookup_value, table_array, col_index_number, [range_lookup])=HLOOKUP (lookup_value, table_array, row_index_number, [range_lookup])

Final Thoughts

The difference between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP is negligible if we look closely. At the same time, using VLOOKUP is quite easy, and users find it most suitable for finding out particular information from a range of data.

HLOOKUP isn’t used very frequently, but it is used when VLOOKUP can’t be used.

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to VLOOKUP vs. HLOOKUP. Here we discuss the top difference between VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP along with infographics and comparison table. You may also have a look at the following articles –

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Musty says

    Good job!!!

    • Dheeraj Vaidya says

      Thanks for your kind words!

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