Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: References to Hyperlinks aren't Hyperlinks.

References to Hyperlinks aren't Hyperlinks

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated July 26, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365


If you have a hyperlink in a cell (such as cell A1) and then you use a formula in another cell that references that hyperlink, the result of that formula is not a hyperlink. For instance, suppose cell B1 contains this simple formula:

=A1

The result of that formula will not be a hyperlink, even if cell A1 contains a hyperlink. The reason is that the formula extracts the value of the referenced cell, which is the text displayed in A1. If what is displayed in cell A1 is a URL, then you could modify your formula just a bit to result in a hyperlink:

=HYPERLINK(A1)

If cell A1 does not contain a URL, or if it is a hyperlink where the displayed text is different than the underlying URL, then the HYPERLINK function won't work as expected.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9603) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: References to Hyperlinks aren't Hyperlinks.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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