Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Chapter 3: Working with Chart Series
Dealing with Numeric Category Labels
It’s not uncommon to have category labels that consist of numbers. For example, you
may create a chart that shows sales by year, and the years are numeric values. If your
category labels include a heading, Excel will (incorrectly) interpret the category labels
as a data series. The following figure shows an example.
You can, of course, use the Source Data dialog box to fix the chart. But a more
efficient solution is to make a simple change before you create the chart: Remove the
header text above the category labels! The following figure shows the chart that was
created when the heading was removed from the category label column.
It’s a simple matter to override Excel’s orientation guess in Step 2 of the Chart
Wizard. Or, you can change the orientation after the chart is created. To do so:
1. Activate the chart.
2. Choose Chart
3. In the Source Data dialog box, select the Data Range tab.
4. Choose the Rows or Columns option. You’ll be able to get a preview of the
chart for each orientation.