Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Changing a chart’s data source
Displaying data graphically
When you enter data into a Microsoft Excel worksheet, you
create a record of important events, whether they are
individual product sales, sales for an hour of a day, or the price
of a product. However, a list of values in cells can’t easily
communicate the overall trends in your data. The best way
to communicate trends in large data collections is through
charts and graphs, which summarize data visually.
Table 12-1 Standard Excel chart types and uses
Chart type
Use
Column
Compares categories of data in vertical format.
Bar
Compares categories of data in horizontal format.
Line
Displays trends in data over time.
Pie
Compares data as part of a contribution to a
whole.
As an example of how charts and graphs can help present
your data more effectively, consider the following Excel table,
which lists the number of transactions generated by a small
company’s website.
Scatter plot
Compares pairs of values in a dot format.
Area
Compares the trend of values over time or
categories.
When you present the results in a chart or graph, as in a line
chart, you can compare the values more readily. The
following table explains which types of data each chart type can be
used to represent effectively, but feel free to experiment!
Doughnut
Compares multiple series of data in a percent
format.
Radar
Displays changes in values relative to a center
point.
Surface
Displays trends in values across two dimensions.
Bubble
Compares sets of three values.
Stock
Displays a chart to compare stock prices.
Cylinder
Same as a column or bar chart, but a cylinder is
used.
Cone
Same as a column or bar chart, but a cone is used.
Pyramid
Same as a column or bar chart, but a pyramid is
used.
Combo
Combines two types of charts into a single chart.
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