I am searching for cells that have the word aldi in the filter dropdown. So I choose "Contains" and enter aldi.

This is bringing back cells that contain Geraldine etc.

I've had some success using aldi * with the space and asterisk, which removes results like Geraldine. But still contains results like Vivaldi.

I don't mind if the string contains another word along with aldi, e.g. Aldi shop 123. I just want to make sure the instance of aldi is is by itself.

Sample of data:


Screenshot is what I have done so far.

  • 1
    Is Aldi always the first word in the desired cells? – Michael Harvey Jan 17 at 10:17
  • Not always. It could say "New York Aldi". There are at least 100 different store names that I need to standardize. For example once I clean up Aldi, I will try to standardize all KFC. So I will have to search for all instances of KFC stores e.g. "New York KFC" or "1235 KFC Toronto" or "KFC NY" ... but omit "UKFC Football Club" for example. I need KFC / Aldi etc. to be on their own in the string. – SCool Jan 17 at 12:19
  • What if it was always the first word? Use "beings with" ? – SCool Jan 17 at 12:23
  • should be * aldi *, asterik before and after (with spaces too). But it would be a problem if the cells ends with ` aldi` with no space... – gns100 Jan 17 at 22:08

First enter the following User Defined Function in a standard module:

Public Function aldi(sIn As String) As String
    arr = Split(LCase(Replace(sIn, ".", "")))
    aldi = "h"
    For Each a In arr
        If a = "aldi" Then
            aldi = "s"
        End If
    Next a
End Function

It will return either "s" for "show" or "h" for "hide"

If your data is in column A, then in B2 enter:


and copy downward:

enter image description here

Then filter column B to display only the "s" rows:

enter image description here

User Defined Functions (UDFs) are very easy to install and use:

  1. ALT-F11 brings up the VBE window
  2. ALT-I ALT-M opens a fresh module
  3. paste the stuff in and close the VBE window

If you save the workbook, the UDF will be saved with it. If you are using a version of Excel later then 2003, you must save the file as .xlsm rather than .xlsx

To remove the UDF:

  1. bring up the VBE window as above
  2. clear the code out
  3. close the VBE window

To use the UDF from Excel:


To learn more about macros in general, see:




and for specifics on UDFs, see:


Macros must be enabled for this to work!


The code line:

arr = Split(LCase(Replace(sIn, ".", "")))
  • takes the phrase or sentence and converts it to lower case; so Aldi and aldi are treated the same.
  • it removes periods so any aldi. are considered "show"
  • it creates an array of words using the space character as the separator.
  • it seaches for "aldi" in that array
| improve this answer | |
  • Thanks, I'll try that. What exactly are you doing here? arr = Split(LCase(Replace(sIn, ".", ""))) – SCool Jan 17 at 14:06
  • @SCool See my EDIT#1 – Gary's Student Jan 17 at 14:23

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