Highlighting Cells Containing both Letters and Numbers

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 25, 2018)

5

Emmanuel would like to know how he can use conditional formatting to highlight a cell if that cell contains a mix of both numbers and letters. If the it contains all letters or all numbers, the cell should not be highlighted.

In this tip I won't focus on how to create a conditional format; there have been plenty of other ExcelTips that focused on that task. What I will focus on is a few formulas you could use in defining the condirtional formatting rule. The formula needs to examine the value in the cell and return "True" if it contains both letters and numbers, and "False" in all other instances.

Here are three different formulas you can try in the rule:

=SUM(IFERROR(FIND(ROW($1:$10)-1,A1),))*ISTEXT(A1)
=AND(ISTEXT(A1),MATCH(FALSE,ISERROR(1*MID(A1,ROW(INDIRECT("1:15")),1)),0))
=AND(SUM(--(ISNUMBER(--MID(A1,ROW(INDIRECT("A1:A"&LEN(A1))),1)))),ISTEXT(A1))

Any of these formulas work just fine (I would personally choose use the shortest one—less typing!), but there is one potential drawback. If you have numeric digits stored in a cell and the cell as formatted as Text, then the formulas will still return "True" and the conditional format is applied. This occurs because each of the formulas use the ISTEXT function, which looks at the format of the cell to see if it contains text.

The easiest way to get around this potential "false positive" is to create a user-defined function (a macro) that can then be referenced in your conditional formatting rule. Here's a very simple UDF that returns "True" only if the cell contents (not its format) contain both letters and numbers:

Function CheckChars(r As Range) As Boolean
    CheckChars = False
    If r Like "*#*" And UCase(r) Like "*[A-Z]*" Then CheckChars = True
End Function

In order to use this in your conditional formatting rule, simply use this formula:

=CheckChars(A1)

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (13422) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Deleting Rows before a Cutoff Date

If you are using Excel to work with data that is date-centered, you may want to delete some of the data before a specific ...

Discover More

Accessing Excel through a PDF File

Word and PDF files go together like peanut butter and jelly. (How's that for a metaphor?) If you create PDF files from ...

Discover More

Disabling the F1 Key

Tired of hitting the F1 key by mistake and pulling up the Help system? Here are a couple of ways (one drastic and one not ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Returning a Value Based on Text Color

Conditional formatting rules can be used to adjust the way in which information is displayed in Excel, such as the text ...

Discover More

Conditionally Formatting for Multiple Date Comparisons

When you compare dates in a conditional formatting rule, you need to be careful how you put your comparisons together. Do ...

Discover More

Copying Conditional Formatting

Conditional formatting is a great feature in Excel. Here's how you can copy conditional formats from one cell to another ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 0 + 4?

2018-07-19 11:07:27

Peter Atherton

Vignesh

If you're text is is A1 and you enter this in B1 =ISNUMBER(MID(A1,4,1)*1) it will return TRUE or FALSE. You can use this in conditional format as in
=ISNUMBER(MID(A1,4,1)*1)=FALSE



(see Figure 1 below)


Figure 1. 




2018-07-18 05:16:04

Vignesh

Hi ,

I have a question, I need to highlight the cell if the fourth digit is "Alphabet". Anyone suggest formulas


2016-01-18 13:35:52

Michael (Micky) Avidan

Sorry,
Missed the formulas at the upper part of the tip.
--------------------------
Michael (Micky) Avidan
“Microsoft® Answers" - Wiki author & Forums Moderator
“Microsoft®” MVP – Excel (2009-2016)
ISRAEL


2016-01-18 13:33:39

Michael (Micky) Avidan

@To whom it may concern:
For the range B2:B8 > FIRST YOU MUST SELECT that range and then declare the C.F. relying on a formula such as:

=SUM(IFERROR(FIND(ROW($1:$10)-1,B2),))*ISTEXT(B2)

See sample in the following links:
http://jpg.co.il/view/5690ef1a0823f.png/
http://screenpresso.com/=66Tgg
--------------------------
Michael (Micky) Avidan
“Microsoft® Answers" - Wiki author & Forums Moderator
“Microsoft®” MVP – Excel (2009-2016)
ISRAEL


2016-01-18 00:25:11

Niranjan

Thanks for this tip. It's going to be useful for many for sure.


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.