Excel LEN Function

HomeExcel FunctionsExcel LEN Function (Example + Sample File)


The Excel LEN Function is listed under Microsoft Excel's Text Functions category. It returns the count of characters in the value. In simple words, with the LEN function, you can count how many characters are there in value. You can refer to a cell or insert the value in the function directly

How to use it

To learn how to use the LEN function in Excel, you need to understand its syntax and arguments:




  • text: A string for which you want to count the characters.


  • It will only count the characters as per the actual values in the cell.
  • Any formatted character like “$” will not be considered as a character.
  • If you refer to an array range it will return the result in an array.
  • If a cell is blank it will return 0 in the result.
  • If a cell has an error value it will return that error in the result.
  • You can also insert a text string directly into the function to count the length of the string.


To master the LEN function we need to try it out in an example, so make sure to check out the below one:

In the below example, we have used the LEN to count letters in a cell. “Hello, World” has 10 characters with a space between and we have got 11 in the result.

In the below example, “22-Jan-2016” has 11 characters, but LEN returns 5.

The reason behind it is that the LEN function counts the characters in the value of a cell and not concerned with formatting.

Related functions

This tutorial is the part of our Excel Functions with Examples (Function Guide) and below are some of the related functions:

About the Author

Puneet Gogia

Puneet is using Excel since his college days. He helped thousands of people to understand the power of the spreadsheets and learn Microsoft Excel. You can find him online, tweeting about Excel, on a running track, or sometimes hiking up a mountain.