How to Make a Chart or Graph in Microsoft Excel?

by James Antonio

Microsoft Excel is a very powerful and helpful device for work, business firms, educational purposes, etc. Excel is the best place to store all the business data in an organized form, create charts, graphs, and spreadsheets and make the work easy and efficient. It involves multiple technologies to make the work better. Know how to Make a Chart or Graph in Microsoft Excel.

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Most MNCs do not prefer going through pages and pages of spreadsheets. Visual graphs, plotting’s from rows and columns look more quick and easy. If you are prepared to give your Excel spreadsheet a visually appealing and easy look then you are at the correct spot. It is not a hard job to create graphs in Excel. You can create them using the various tools available in Microsoft Excel.

Graphs project multiple combinations and variations in values of data points at a given period. They are quite easy to make as you have to deal with multiple data parameters. For example, you are trying to make a report on the numbers of fours employees are working per month and the percentage of their annual leaves in your company. You can create a graph and spot the slope to track the rise and dips and get an approximate count.

How to Make a Graph in Microsoft Excel?

Given below are the steps to create your graph in Excel.

1. Input your Data in the Excel Sheet and Assign the Required Data Types

In the beginning, you need to fill your Excel sheet with whatever data is required. If the required data has been imported from software, it has probably been brought together into a CSV (comma-separated values) formatted document. In such a case, use any online CSV to convert into Excel using a converter and generate the Excel file. You can also open the file in Excel and save the same file using an Excel extension.

After the file is converted, you need to erase the columns and the rows. Working on a fresh spreadsheet is easy and better to work on. Making changes or modifying becomes easier. If you see that it is not working this way, you have to manually input the data in the spreadsheet or copy-paste it over before making your Excel graph. Excel has got 2 major components in its spreadsheet:

  • The horizontal rows are denoted with numbers.
  • The vertical columns are denoted with alphabets.

After inputting the data values properly with its types, you need to go to the Number section under the Home tab. Then assign the right data type to the respective columns. If this is not done properly, there are high chances of the graph not being placed properly.

Choose the type of Excel Graph you want to deliver

The type of Excel graph depends on what type of data and the number of parameters required to be tracked simultaneously. Line graphs are the most suitable ones.

2. Highlight Your Data and Insert the Graph of Your Choice into the Spreadsheet.

To make the graph, highlight the data with the titles of the X and Y-axis. Now go to the Insert tab, from the charts section, click on the column icon. From the dropdown window that comes, select the graph of your choice.

3. Switch the Data on Each Axis, if Necessary.

If you change your mind, you can change the X and Y-axis of the graph. Right-click on the graph, click on Select Data and click on Switch Row or Column. In this way, the axis will be rearranged. After finishing, click on Ok at the bottom.

4. Adjust Your Data’s Layout and Colors.

You can add colors and designs to the graph of your choice. For changing the labelling and layout, click on the graph, then click on the Chart Design tab. choose your preferred axis titles, legend, and chart title. You can change the bar color from here.

5. Change the Y-axis Measurement options, if Desired.

Sometimes you may need to change the Y-axis measurement options. To do this, click on the Y-axis percentages on the chart and see the Format Axis window. From here you can change the Y-axis percentage to 0 decimal places or display the units located on the Axis options tab.

6. Title Your Graph

The last and the most important part is to name your graph. Click upon the ‘Chart Title’, a cursor will come. Now, type the title of your choice.

Microsoft Excel is becoming a significant part of the working world with each passing day. Visual understandings with proper recordings are very important. This article has discussed creating graphs in Excel. The above steps will make your work swift and easy.

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How to Export Your Graph?

Once you get the graph of your choice, you can save it in any JPEG, PNG, etc. format of your wish. By doing this you will get a much better picture than taking screenshots. You can then insert the clean images of the graph in your presentation. To save, right-click on the graph, and click on save as a picture.

Can the Data be Reordered Later?

Yes, you reorder the data even after inputting them once. Highlight the data in the cells above your chart, click on Data and select sort. Now sort accordingly depending on your choice.

Types of Graphs Present in Excel

Excel has3 varieties of graphs. Given below are the types of graphs and their important details.

Column Graphs: Here, viewers get to see the change in parameters with passing time. Remember, they are called graphs only when only a single data parameter is in use. If there are multiple parameters, viewers can’t get any insights into how the parameter is changing individually.
Line Graphs: Line Graphs are available in both 2 dimensional and 3-dimensional line formats in all the versions of Microsoft Excel. Line graphs are best for putting up trends over time. Here, you can plot more than one data parameter simultaneously; for example, the average number of hours spends in the firm in a month, employee compensation, the average percentage of leaves against the X-axis, etc.
Bar Graphs: Bar graphs resemble column graphs a lot. In Bar graphs, the constant parameter that might be days is assigned to the Y-axis. The other variables are plotted against X-axis.

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