Formulas > =MID()

How To Use MID() Function in Google Sheets


Returns a segment of a string.

Common questions about the MID formula in Google Sheets:
What does the MID formula do in Google Sheets?
  1. How do I use the MID formula in Google Sheets?
  2. What are the arguments or parameters of the MID formula?
  3. Can the MID formula extract text from a specific position within a cell?
  4. Can the MID formula extract a specific number of characters from a cell?
  5. Can the MID formula handle non-textual data?

Appropriate use of the MID formula:
  1. Extracting a portion of text from a cell: The MID formula is commonly used to extract a substring from a text string based on a specified starting position and length.
  2. Manipulating and transforming text: You can use the MID formula in combination with other text functions to manipulate and transform text data in various ways.
  3. Parsing data: The MID formula can be used to extract specific data patterns from a larger string, such as extracting dates, phone numbers, or other structured information.

Common mistyping of the MID formula:
  1. Misspelling the formula name as "MID" (e.g., "MIDDD" or "MIDF").
  2. Incorrectly specifying the arguments or parameters, such as providing the wrong order or type of input.

Common inappropriate uses of the MID formula:
  1. Using it on non-textual data: The MID formula is designed for manipulating and extracting text, so applying it to numerical or other non-textual data would result in errors or unexpected results.
  2. Misusing the formula's purpose: The MID formula is not suitable for all text manipulation tasks, and using it inappropriately can lead to inefficient or incorrect results. Other text functions like SUBSTITUTE, CONCATENATE, or REGEXEXTRACT might be more appropriate for specific tasks.

Common pitfalls when using the MID formula:
Off-by-one errors: The MID formula requires specifying the starting position of the substring, which is often one-based (starting from 1) rather than zero-based (starting from 0). Failing to adjust for this can lead to incorrect extraction.
  1. Inconsistent or dynamic string lengths: If the length of the desired substring varies or is not known in advance, the MID formula might not provide the expected results. Using other functions like LEN or FIND can help handle such scenarios.

Common mistakes when using the MID formula:
  1. Omitting one or both of the required arguments: The MID formula requires specifying the input text and the starting position, and optionally, the length of the substring to extract. Failing to provide these arguments will result in errors.
  2. Incorrectly calculating the length argument: If the length argument is miscalculated or omitted, the formula might extract more or fewer characters than intended.

Common misconceptions about the MID formula:
  1. The MID formula can modify the original text: The MID formula only extracts a portion of text from a given string. It does not modify the original text or replace it with the extracted substring.
  2. The MID formula automatically adjusts for changes in the original text: If the original text changes, the MID formula does not automatically update the extracted substring. You may need to manually adjust the formula or use techniques like dynamic references to account for changes.

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How To Actually Use MID() in Sheets

MID(string, starting_at, extract_length)

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Learn more about the MID() formula:

MID function

Discover how to use the MID function with string text. I'd recommend viewing this video in conjunction with the LEFT and RIGHT function videos.

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