How to count cells by criteria

Use COUNTIF if you need to sum values for a particular person or other criterion.

To count cells by criteria, do the following:

    1.    Select the cell where want Excel to return the number of cell by criteria.

COUNTIF example Excel 2016

    2.    Do one of the following:

  • On the Formula tab, in the Function Library group, select the More Functions button and then select Statistical:
    Formula Excel 2016

    Choose COUNTIF in the list.

  • Click the Insert Function button Insert Function button in the left of the edit bar:
    Edit bar Excel 2016

    In the Insert Function dialog box:

    Insert Function Excel 2016
    • select Statistical in the Or select a category listbox
    • select COUNTIF in the Select a function list

    3.    In the Function Arguments dialog box, full following fields:

Insert Function Excel 2016
  • The Range field determines the range of cells Excel will look to perform the count in. In this example the cell range is D2:D21.
  • The Criteria is a conditional statement that is similar to the conditional statement in the IF statement.

    4.    Press OK.

COUNTIF example Excel 2016

Note: You can enter this formula using keyboard, for this example:


If you want to use COUNTIF on a selection of cells (not necessarily one solid range), summing multiple COUNTIFs:



  • You can use the wildcard characters, question mark (?) and asterisk (*), in criteria. A question mark matches any single character; an asterisk matches any sequence of characters. If you want to find an actual question mark or asterisk, type a tilde (~) before the character.
  • Microsoft Excel provides additional functions that can be used to analyse your data based on a condition.
    • To calculate a sum based on a string of text or a number within a range, use the SUMIF worksheet function (see How to sum cells by criteria for more details).
    • To have a formula return one of two values based on a condition, such as a sales bonus based on a specified sales amount, use the IF worksheet function.
    • To count cells that are empty or not empty, use the COUNTA and COUNTBLANK functions.