Excel Indirect Function

This post will guide you how to use Excel INDIRECT function with syntax and examples in Microsoft excel.


The Excel INDIRECT function returns the cell reference based on a text string, such as: type the text string “A2” in B1 cell, it just a text string, so you can use INDIRECT function to convert text string as cell reference.

The INDIRECT function is a build-in function in Microsoft Excel and it is categorized as a Lookup and Reference Function.

The INDIRECT function is available in Excel 2016, Excel 2013, Excel 2010, Excel 2007, Excel 2003, Excel XP, Excel 2000, Excel 2011 for Mac.


The syntax of the INDIRECT function is as below:

= INDIRECT  (ref_text,[a1])

Where the INDIRECT function arguments are:
Ref_text -This is a required argument. A reference to a cell as a text string.
A1 – This is an optional argument.  It is a logical value that specify the style of the Ref_text reference.
Note: If A1 value is True or omitted, the ref_text will be interpreted as an A1-style reference.
If A1 value is False, The ref_text will be interpreted as R1C1 style reference.


The below examples will show you how to use Excel INDIRECT Lookup and Reference Function to return a  cell or range reference that is represented by a text string.

#1 To get the value of the reference in cell A2, just using the following excel formula: =INDIRECT(A2)

excel indirect function example1

More Excel INDIRECT  Function Examples

  • Get Cell Value Based on Row and Column Numbers
    If you want to retrieve values using cell references based on row and column numbers, you can create a formula based on the INDIRECT function and the ADDRESS function.….
  • Sumif with 3D Reference for Multiple Worksheet
    If you want to sum 3d references across the different worksheet, and you need to create a complex formula based on the SUMPRODUCT function, the SUMIF function, and the INDIRECT function..….
  • Sum Numbers from 1 to N
    Assuming that you supply a number 100, and you want to sum the numbers from 1 to 100 (1+2+3+…+100), you need to create a formula based on the SUMPRODUCT function, the ROW function and the INDIRECT function to achieve the result..….

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