In this comprehensive guide, we will explore everything you need to know about the MID function in Google Sheets. The MID function is a powerful tool that allows you to extract a specific portion of text from a given string. Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced user, this article will provide you with valuable insights, examples, tips, and tricks to help you master the MID function in Google Sheets.
The MID function in Google Sheets has the following syntax:
MID(text, start_position, number_of_characters)
- text is the text string from which you want to extract a portion.
- start_position is the position of the first character you want to extract, with the first character in the text string being position 1.
- number_of_characters is the number of characters you want to extract from the text string, starting from the start_position.
Let’s dive into some examples to better understand how the MID function works in Google Sheets.
Example 1: Basic MID Function
Suppose you have the following text string in cell A1: “Google Sheets is amazing!” and you want to extract the word “Sheets” from it. You can use the MID function as follows:
=MID(A1, 8, 6)
This formula will return the text “Sheets”, as it starts at the 8th character and extracts 6 characters.
Example 2: MID Function with Dynamic Start Position
Imagine you have a list of email addresses in column A, and you want to extract the domain names (the part after the ‘@’ symbol). You can use the MID function in combination with the FIND function to achieve this:
=MID(A1, FIND(“@”, A1) + 1, LEN(A1) – FIND(“@”, A1))
This formula first finds the position of the ‘@’ symbol using the FIND function, then extracts the domain name by starting from the character after the ‘@’ symbol and continuing until the end of the text string.
MID Tips & Tricks
Here are some tips and tricks to help you get the most out of the MID function in Google Sheets:
- Use the MID function in combination with other text functions like LEFT, RIGHT, FIND, and LEN to perform more complex text manipulations.
- If you need to extract a specific portion of text based on a delimiter (e.g., a comma or a space), consider using the SPLIT function instead of MID.
- Remember that the start_position argument is 1-based, meaning that the first character in the text string is at position 1.
- If the number_of_characters argument is greater than the remaining characters in the text string, the MID function will return all the characters until the end of the string.
Common Mistakes When Using MID
Here are some common mistakes users make when using the MID function in Google Sheets:
- Using a start_position value less than 1. This will result in an error, as the first character in the text string is at position 1.
- Using a negative number for the number_of_characters argument. This will also result in an error. Ensure that the number_of_characters argument is a positive integer.
- Forgetting to close the parentheses in the formula, which will result in a formula parse error.
Why Isn’t My MID Function Working?
If your MID function isn’t working as expected, consider the following troubleshooting steps:
- Double-check the syntax of your formula to ensure you have the correct arguments in the correct order.
- Ensure that the start_position and number_of_characters arguments are positive integers.
- Check for any errors in the cells referenced by your formula, as these may cause the MID function to return an error.
- Make sure that your text string does not contain any non-printable characters, as these may cause unexpected results when using the MID function.
MID: Related Formulae
Here are some related formulae that you may find useful when working with the MID function in Google Sheets:
- LEFT: Extracts a specified number of characters from the beginning of a text string.
- RIGHT: Extracts a specified number of characters from the end of a text string.
- FIND: Returns the position of a specified character or substring within a text string.
- LEN: Returns the length of a text string, measured in characters.
- SPLIT: Splits a text string into separate values based on a specified delimiter.
By mastering the MID function and its related formulae, you’ll be well-equipped to handle a wide range of text manipulation tasks in Google Sheets. Happy sheeting!