Often you may want to categorize data based on values in Excel.

For example, suppose we have the following dataset about basketball players and we’d like to place each player into a category based on their points:

The following step-by-step example shows how to do so.

**Step 1: Enter the Data**

First, enter the data values into Excel:

**Step 2: Define the Limits for the Categories**

Next, we need to define the limits for the categories.

For example, suppose we would like to define the following limits:

- 0-9 points =
**Bad** - 10-19 points =
**OK** - 20-29 points =
**Good** - 30-39 points =
**Great** - 40+ points =
**Excellent**

We can create the following table in columns E and F to define these limits:

**Step 3: Categorize the Data**

Next, we can type the following formula into cell **C2** to categorize the first player based on the number of points in cell **B2**:

=VLOOKUP(B2, $E$2:$F$6, 2, TRUE)

We can then click and drag this formula down to each remaining cell in column C:

From the output we can see:

- Andy scored 22 points, so he is categorized as
**Good**. - Bob scored 14 points, so he is categorized as
**OK**. - Chad scored 19 points, so he is categorized as
**OK**. - Doug scored 35 points, so he is categorized as
**Great**.

And so on.

**Note:** You can find the complete documentation for the **VLOOKUP** function in Excel here.

**Additional Resources**

The following tutorials explain how to perform other common operations in Excel:

How to Sum Values by Category in Excel

How to Group by Name in Excel

How to Rank Values by Group in Excel