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How to Use Excel LEFT Function?

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LEFT functionPin
LEFT function

Microsoft Excel is a powerful data visualization and analysis program used all around the world. It uses spreadsheets to store, organize, or perform operations with formulas and functions. This application is developed for WindowsMacAndroid, and iOS. The major purpose of the software is to do complicated calculations which are difficult to do manually.

The LEFT Function extracts the first character (starting from the left side) or characters from the given string based on your specified number. This article will discuss the LEFT Function in Excel with syntax and examples. Get the official version of MS Excel from the following link:

Excel LEFT FunctionPin
Excel LEFT Function

Explanation of LEFT Function

  • It is one of the built-in functions in Excel.
  • The LEFT function in Excel will extract the given number of characters from the left side of the input string.
  • For example, if we give LEFT(“Excel”,3) returns “Exc.”


  • Here, you will see the syntax of the LEFT function.
  • To apply this function on your spreadsheet, you have to select a cell and enter the formula in the following format.
  • Once you enter the formula, just click on the Enter button to get the result.

=LEFT(text, [num_chars])

Argument Description

  • Text: The String or Text.
  • [num_chars]: The number of characters you want to extract from the given string or text. By default, the LEFT Function takes the “number of characters” value as 1.

Note: The LEFT Function considers space as a character.

Practical Example

Let’s take a look at the following examples for a better understanding of the LEFT Function in Excel.

  • Initially, you have to open your Excel workbook on your PC and launch a worksheet that has data.
  • For instance, we have entered an input text string in Cell B3, and we want to extract its first three letters.
Input ValuePin
Input Value
  • To do so, we have entered the above-mentioned formula in cell D3 to get the result.
Enter the formulaPin
Enter the formula
  • To execute the function, you need to click on the Enter button and get the extracted value, as shown in the below image.
  • Let’s see one more example to make it clear for you. Here, we come up with the range of input values. The input range is B3:B6.
Input RangePin
Input Range
  • Once you applied the LEFT function to this range, you will get the results, as shown in the below image.

A Short Synopsis

This article gives you a complete tutorial about the LEFT Function in Excel. We have demonstrated the LEFT Function with the related examples. Please leave your Queries in the comment section, we will resolve your queries ASAP. Share your Feedback as well. To learn more about Excel functions, then visit our webpage

Video Tutorial

The following video will show you how to use the LEFT function in the Excel spreadsheet.

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