When using Excel functions play an important role in finding values for a range of cells. Learn all about using functions in Excel.

While there are hundreds of functions in Excel, the ones you'll use the most will depend on the **type of data** your workbooks contain. There's no need to learn every single function, but exploring some of the different **types** of functions will help you as you create new projects. You can even use the **Function Library** on the **Formulas** tab to browse functions by category, such as **Financial**, **Logical**, **Text**, and **Date & Time**.

To access the **Function Library**, select the **Formulas** tab on the **Ribbon**. Look for the **Function Library** group.

Click the buttons in the interactive below to learn more about the different types of functions in Excel.

edit hotspots## Lookup & Reference

The **Lookup & Reference** category contains functions that will return results for finding and referencing information. For example, you can add a hyperlink to a cell (**HYPERLINK**) or return the value of a particular row and column intersection (**INDEX**).

In the example below, we'll use the COUNTA function to count the total number of items in the **Items** column. Unlike COUNT, **COUNTA** can be used to tally cells that contain data of any kind, not just numerical data.

- Select the
**cell**that will contain the function. In our example, we'll select cell**B17**. - Click the
**Formulas**tab on the**Ribbon**to access the**Function Library**. - From the
**Function Library**group, select the desired**function category**. In our example, we'll choose**More Functions**, th**en hover the mouse over****Statistical**. - Select the
**desired function**from the drop-down menu. In our example, we'll select the**COUNTA**function, which will count the number of cells in the**Items**column that are not empty. - The
**Function Arguments**dialog box will appear. Select the**Value1**field, then enter or select the desired cells. In our example, we'll enter the cell range**A3:A12**. You may continue to add arguments in the**Value2**field, but in this case we only want to count the number of cells in the cell range**A3:A12**. - When you're satisfied, click
**OK**. - The function will be
**calculated**, and the**result**will appear in the cell. In our example, the result shows that a total of**10 items**were ordered.