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Create an Excel chart - this is how it works

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Create a chart in Excel
1st step: create data
Step 2: add a diagram
3rd step: edit the diagram title
4th step: edit the legend
5th step: Format axes
These are the most important types of diagrams
Line diagram
bar chart
Pie chart
Waterfall chart
Treemap / hierarchy diagram
quick start Guide

Do you want to create a chart using Excel? Follow our guide to find out how to do that..

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You have collected some data using Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. You can create a diagram to further process this clearly. In the following instructions we will show you how you can create a diagram of various types from your data and adapt it to your needs. Below you can also read about the main types of diagrams that you can choose from.

Tip: Also check out tips and tricks for chart design in Excel here.

Create a chart in Excel

Follow our step-by-step instructions or take a look at the brief instructions ..

1st step: create data

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Open Excel and enter the data that you want to include in the chart later. It is best to give the respective columns headings directly . These are transferred directly to a diagram when the data is processed. When you have finished entering your data, select it.

Step 2: add a diagram

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Open the " Insert " tab . Then look in the " Diagrams " area and click there to select a diagram type that matches your data. Newer versions of Excel also offer that Excel recommend a chart type . However, this function should be used with caution, because you do not always get a suitable type. In the example, a point diagram or XY diagram is selected. By holding the mouse over a diagram type, you will be shown a preview directly . By the way: You can easily copy the diagram created in this way into other Office programs such as Word!

3rd step: edit the diagram title

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Now you can adapt the diagram to your requirements. The best way to do this is to start with the diagram title . Double click on it to change the title and adjust the font.

4th step: edit the legend

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You can edit the automatically generated legend by right-clicking and then " Format legend ... ". Here you can, for example, change the position, the labeling and the color.

5th step: Format axes

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You can also change the properties of the axes, such as scaling and labeling. To do this, right-click on the axis of your choice. Then select " Format Axis ... ".

By the way: It is also practical that you can copy a diagram created with Excel directly into Word. The diagram will then appear in your Word document exactly as you created it in Excel. To do this, simply click on the diagram so that it is selected. Press [Ctrl] + [C] to copy and paste it easily into Word with [Ctrl] + [V] .

These are the most important types of diagrams

There are a variety of different charts in Excel to choose from. We present the most important ones here:

Line diagram

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With a line diagram , you can easily and clearly display gradients. Such a diagram is particularly suitable if you want to compare several developments, for example.

bar chart

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A bar chart enables you to display distributions and compare them with one another. This is particularly useful, for example, for a time comparison.

Pie chart

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A pie chart is also useful for showing distributions. It is particularly clear and the displayed content can be grasped quickly.

Waterfall chart

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Changes can be shown clearly in a waterfall diagram - for example in a profit statement.

Treemap / hierarchy diagram

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A tree map or hierarchy diagram shows distributions between different elements on an area. Each part is assigned a certain part of the total area, which enables a clear representation. Compared to a pie chart, it can often be used to better represent smaller elements.

quick start Guide

  1. Enter your dates in Excel and highlight them. The best thing to do is to give the individual columns headings . This makes it easier to incorporate it into a diagram later.
  2. Click on the " Insert " tab . Here you can select a diagram type under " Diagrams " . Choose the type that you think best fits your data.
  3. You have now created the diagram and can still edit the subtleties. You can edit the diagram title by double-clicking on " Diagram Title ".
  4. You can edit the legend by right-clicking on the automatically created legend and selecting " Format legend ... ".
  5. You can also change axis details, such as scaling or labeling . To do this, right-click on the axis and select " Format Axis ... ".

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