## Lookup and return multiple values sorted in a custom order

*Article updated on February 19, 2018*

*Hi Oscar,*

* Thanks for creating such a helpful website and I've a question if I would like to return the value with a prefix order would it possible? If not can I just add another column in the data and used it as part of the search criteria?*

The array formula in cell G5 looks for the value Japan (cell G2) in column B and returns corresponding values in column D, sorted ascending by the numbers in column C.

**Array formula in cell G5:**

**Array formula in cell F5:**

You can change the order to descending by replacing the SMALL function with the LARGE function.

**How to enter an array formula**

- Copy above array formula for cell G5 (Ctrl + c)
- Double click cell G5
- Paste array formula (CTRL + v)
- Press and hold CTRL + SHIFT simultaneously
- Press Enter once
- Release all keys

The formula now has curly brackets before and after the array formula {=*array_formula*}, if you did the above steps correctly.

**How to copy array formula to remaining cells below**

- Select cell G5
- Copy cell (Ctrl + c)
- Select cell range G6:G11
- Paste (Ctrl + v)

### Explaining array formula in cell G5

**Step 1 - Filter sort numbers for selected country**

IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14,$C$3:$C$14,"")

becomes

{20; ""; 8; 19; ""; 13; ""; 3; 7; 18; ""; ""}

**Step 2 - Find k-th smallest value in array**

SMALL(IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14,""), ROW(A1))

becomes

SMALL({20; ""; 8; 19; ""; 13; ""; 3; 7; 18; ""; ""}, ROW(A1))

becomes

SMALL({20; ""; 8; 19; ""; 13; ""; 3; 7; 18; ""; ""}, 1)

and returns 3.

ROW(A1) changes as we copy the cell to cells below, this makes the array formula dynamic.

*Step 3 - Find the relative position of the k-th smallest value in array*

MATCH(SMALL(IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14, ""),ROW(A1)), IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14, ""), 0)

becomes

MATCH(3, IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14, ""), 0)

becomes

MATCH(3, {20; ""; 8; 19; ""; 13; ""; 3; 7; 18; ""; ""}, 0)

and returns 8.

**Step 4 - Return Item**

INDEX($D$3:$D$14, MATCH(SMALL(IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14, ""),ROW(A1)), IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, $C$3:$C$14, ""), 0))

becomes

INDEX($D$3:$D$14, 8)

becomes

INDEX({"A"; "B"; "C"; "D"; "E"; "I"; "G"; "H"; "I"; "J"; "K"; "L"}, 8)

and returns H in cell G5.

### Download excel *.xlsx file

Lookup and return multiple values sorted in a custom order.xlsx

### Functions in this post

**IF(**logical_test, [value_if_true], [value_if_false]**)
**Checks whether a condition is met, and returns one value if TRUE, and another value if FALSE

**SMALL(**array,k**)**

Returns the k-th smallest number in this data set.

**ROW(**reference**)**

Returns the rownumber of a reference

**INDEX(**array,row_num,[column_num]**)**

Returns a value or reference of the cell at the intersection of a particular row and column, in a given range

**SMALL(**array,k**)**

Returns the k-th smallest number in this data set.

** MATCH(**lookup_value, lookup_array, [match_type

**]**

Returns the relative position of an item in an array that matches a specified value

Extract unique distinct values from a filtered table [udf and array formula]

Robert Jr asks: Oscar, I am using the VBA code & FilterUniqueSort array to generate unique lists that drive Selection […]Sort text cells alphabetically from two columns using excel array formula

Table of Contents Sort text from two columns combined (array formula) Sort text from multiple cell ranges combined (user defined […]### 13 Responses to “Lookup and return multiple values sorted in a custom order”

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**Contact Oscar**

You can contact me through this webpage

Hi Oscar,

This is a brilliant solution and it has help me save couple of my hairs (else will be scratching of my head on how this can be done).

Your commitment has really help us grow in out Excel knowledge and I sincerely would like to thank you for doing this.

Best Regards,

Pat

Pat,

thank you!

No array formulas

F5:

=INDEX(MOD(SMALL(($B$3:$B$14=$G$2)*($C$3:$C$14)+($B$3:$B$14<>$G$2)*10^10,ROW(A1)),10^10),0)

G5:

=IFERROR(INDEX($D$3:$D$14,MATCH(F5,INDEX(($B$3:$B$14=$G$2)*($C$3:$C$14)+($B$3:$B$14<>$G$2)*10^10,0),0),0),0)

I hope it useful

Hung,

Your formulas work, thank you for your contribution!

Mr. Oscar

Your works are all wonderful

mahmoud-lee

Thank you!

hi Oscar,

can it be sort for alphabet

momoe,

yes it can.

Array formula in cell F5:

=INDEX($D$3:$D$14, MATCH(SMALL(IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, COUNTIF($D$3:$D$14, "< "&$D$3:$D$14), ""), ROW(A1)), IF($G$2=$B$3:$B$14, COUNTIF($D$3:$D$14, "<"&$D$3:$D$14), ""), 0))

Array formula in cell G5:

=SMALL(IF(($G$2=$B$3:$B$14)*(F5=$D$3:$D$14), $C$3:$C$14, ""),COUNTIF($F$5:F5, F5))

Download *.xlsx file

Lookup-and-return-multiple-values-sorted-in-a-custom-order_q2.xlsx

hi Oscar, thank you.

how about lookup two value and sorted the number from small to large

Hi Oscar,

Thanks for your many great solutions.

I am trying to achieve something similar to this post, but with one major difference. Instead of sorting my results small to large or vice versa, I want only to place those results that meet a specific criteria (from another cell) at the top of the list of results, and all other results can follow in any order.

Can you help?

Simon, why would you want to include results that don't match your criteria?

Hi Oscar,

Thanks for your reply. I hadn't really appreciated that there might be some confusion over this, but I can see now!

I have an array formula, which retrieves records based on two criteria - Project Name & Status. Here is a version of the formula:

{=IF(COUNTIFS(DrugList[Project Name],$B$19,DrugList[Status],$A$24)<ROWS($C$25:C25),"",INDEX(DrugList[BNF Code],SMALL(IF((DrugList[Project Name]=$B$19)+(DrugList[Status]=$A$24)=2,ROW(DrugList[BNF Code])-1),ROW(A1))))}

This can return none, one or many (twenty or more) records, which are displayed in a list format. I want to display all of these records for comparison purposes.

However, some of the records are more important, as they match a third criteria (Strength), which is not currently included in the formula. The value for this third criteria can be referenced from a specific cell ($E$19), and regularly changes dependant upon slicer selections. The results will often contain more than one match with this third criteria, as well as many results that match the two in the array formula, but not the third criteria. I would like to be able to display all of the results which match the first two criteria in the formula (which the formula currently does), AND have the results that match the third criteria appear at the top of that list of results, with all other results displayed below, in any order.

What I can't work out, is how to get those results which match the third criteria as well as the other two, to the top of the list.

I hope that makes sense. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Simon,

I hope this will be helpful.

Array formula in cell E6:

=INDEX($A$2:$C$9, IF(COUNTIFS($A$2:$A$9, $F$2, $B$2:$B$9, $F$3)>=ROWS($A$1:$A1), SMALL(IF(($A$2:$A$9=$F$2)*($B$2:$B$9=$F$3), MATCH(ROW($A$2:$A$9), ROW($A$2:$A$9)), ""), ROW(A1)), SMALL(IF(($A$2:$A$9=$F$2)*($B$2:$B$9<>$F$3), MATCH(ROW($A$2:$A$9), ROW($A$2:$A$9)), ""), ROW(A1)-COUNTIF($F$5:$F5, $F$3))), COLUMNS($A$1:A1))