In Excel we can find parts of things. So rather than looking for a chuck of text line “Jones” or “Johnson”, we can find both using wildcards. Wildcards are characters that tell Excel how to search. The asterisk (*) finds any number of characters, while the question mark (?) finds a single character. If you want to look for an asterisk or a question mark, put the tilde (~) character in front of either the asterisk or the question mark to search.