SQL Use LIKE to find matching strings and substrings


Example

See full documentation on LIKE operator.

This example uses the Employees Table from the Example Databases.

SELECT *
FROM Employees
WHERE FName LIKE 'John'

This query will only return Employee #1 whose first name matches 'John' exactly.

SELECT *
FROM Employees
WHERE FName like 'John%'

Adding % allows you to search for a substring:

  • John% - will return any Employee whose name begins with 'John', followed by any amount of characters
  • %John - will return any Employee whose name ends with 'John', proceeded by any amount of characters
  • %John% - will return any Employee whose name contains 'John' anywhere within the value

In this case, the query will return Employee #2 whose name is 'John' as well as Employee #4 whose name is 'Johnathon'.