Of the many charts and graphs in Excel, the bar chart is one that you should be using often. But why?
Here are three things that make bar charts a go-to chart type:
1. They’re easy to make.
When your data is straightforward, designing and customizing a bar chart is as simple as clicking a few buttons.
There aren’t many options, you don’t need to organize your data in a complicated way, and Excel is good at extracting your headings and data.
2. They’re easy to understand.
No matter your audience, they won’t have any trouble interpreting your chart. Some charts require interpretation skills, but bar charts are as simple as they come.
And that’s good for everyone.
3. They can display long category titles.
Some charts make it difficult to display categories that are more than a couple words long.
Bar charts, as we’ll see in a moment, have room for longer titles. It might not seem like much, but it can really make a difference!
4. They’re versatile.
With clustered and stacked options, bar charts can display a variety of data types.
However, there are a few cases in which you might not want to use a bar chart. For example, if you’re trying to show proportions, a stacked bar chart will work, but a pie chart will be better.
And if you want to show change over time, a line graph will be best. (Though you can use a stacked bar chart to make a Gantt chart.)
Now, let’s take a look at how to make a bar chart in Excel.