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Highlight a Row With Conditional Formatting

In this article, I will show you how to apply conditional formatting to highlight an entire row of data based on a selected field.

In the example below, the user can select any employee to highlight the entire row of data for that employee.


Before adding the conditional formatting, let’s first discuss the setup.

You need your data stored somewhere in your Google Sheets spreadsheet.

And you need a cell where the user can select a value for one of the dataset fields. In this case, you need a cell where the user can enter the name of one of the employees.

Conditional Formatting

Once you have your setup ready, select the range of data, not including the headers.

Then go to Format Conditional Formatting.

In the panel on the right, choose custom formula is under “format cells if…”

Then in the formula box, enter the following:

= TopLeftCell = UserSelection
= B5 = C2

Then make sure you place a dollar sign before the column letter of the first reference and two dollar signs in the second reference.

= $B5 = $C$2

Finally, choose the fill color and font color.

Then click on Done.

Formula Explanation

The conditional formatting formula compares the value in column B for each record to the value selected by the user.

If the two values match, the formula evaluates to TRUE, and Google Sheets applies the selected formatting.

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