Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using custom error bars
Figure 5-22: This XY chart uses X error bars and Y error bars.
The Format Error Bars dialog box also contains a Y Error Bars tab that enables
you to change the options you set when you created the error bars. For XY charts
and bubble charts, the dialog box also has an X Error Bars tab.
Using custom error bars
The Custom option for error bars is useful because it enables you to create error
bars that aren’t otherwise available. In most cases, you’ll need first to create
formulas that use the data and then to specify those formula cells as the range(s) for the
error bars.
The chart in Figure 5-23 shows a line chart that plots monthly sales. It uses error
bars to depict the relative sales volume for the previous year. In this case, an error
bar that appears above a data point indicates that the previous year’s sales were
higher in that month. When it appears below the data point, the prior year’s sales
were lower for that month. This chart represents an alternative to displaying an
additional data series. In this case, adding another series would make the chart
cluttered and less legible.
Column D contains a simple formula that calculates the difference between the
data in columns B and C. The range D2:D13 was used as the “+” range for the
Custom error bar option, and the Plus display mode was selected.
Another example of a chart that uses custom error bars is shown in Figure 5-24.
This column chart plots the average daily call volume for each of six weeks. The
error bars depict the daily minimum and maximum for each week. For example, in
Week-1 the average call volume was 77.71 calls per day. The maximum for the
week was 116 and the minimum was 32.
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