“Custom functions” in Microsoft Excel can do many unique tasks using address information, such as calculating driving time and driving distance, identifying addresses within a radius, even performing driving route optimization. Custom functions (also called User-Defined Functions) perform elaborate calculations and are used in cell recipes just like SUM or AVERAGE. In this article we will describe how you can use these functions to create lists of zip codes (by city, county, or state) in Microsoft Excel.
These lists can be used for a variety of purposes, such as planning direct mail or advertising campaigns. But instead of cutting and pasting zip codes from a website or data source, custom functions in Excel may automate interactions with a database and import lists easily into a worksheet, allowing the user to then analyze the information using Excel’s powerful built-in capabilities. From the user’s point of view, these custom made functions look just like another formulation in the worksheet.
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Since all connections with the database occur in the background, the user can work entirely within the acquainted Excel environment – there’s no need to learn a new application.
How would this work within an Excel worksheet? Let’s imagine we need a list of all the zip codes within the city of New Rochelle, in Westchester County, New York. To use a custom function called ZIPLIST, we just kind this formula into a cell “= ZIPLIST (“New York”, “Westchester”, “New Rochelle”)”. The function we call ZIPLIST gets the required data from the local database and returns all the New Rochelle codes to the worksheet cell. If we need data for the long list of cities in a worksheet, we can also input a method using the only worksheet cell places, such as “= ZIPLIST (A1, B1, C1)”, where A1, B1, plus C1 refer to the cell places of the state, county, and town, respectively. We can then easily copy and paste this formula to apply it to all the cities within our list.
Lists for a county or even state can also be generated using this method. For everyone zip codes in the state of California, the custom function formula is”‘= ZIPLIST (“California”). The omission associated with county and city information in this instance indicates only state-level information is necessary.