Software

Make Excel charts easier to read by adjusting data markers

Brighten it up! You can adjust the color and spacing of your data markers to organize and codify your Excel charts. This explanation will show you easily you can make the data easy on the eyes, too.

When an Excel Chart Wizard charts a single data series in a bar or column chart, all data markers have the same default color. This can be hard to read, especially if there are a lot of points in the series. You could click on each data marker individually and change its color, or you could have Excel change them all for you. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the chart, then click on the data series.
  2. Go to Format | Selected Data Series.
  3. On the Options tab, select the Vary Colors By Point check box.
  4. Click OK.

Now each point has its own distinguished color. However, if the data markers are positioned too close together, it may be hard for users to match them up with their corresponding category data along the x axis. To adjust the spacing between the markers, follow these steps:

  1. Select the chart, then click on the data series.
  2. Go to Format | Selected Data Series.
  3. In the Options tab, double-click 30 in the Gap Width text box and enter 200.
  4. Click OK.

Miss a tip?

Check out the Microsoft Excel archive, and catch up on our most recent Excel tips.

Help users increase productivity by automatically signing up for TechRepublic's free Microsoft Office Suite newsletter, featuring Word, Excel, and Access tips, delivered each Wednesday.

0 comments