Excel Chart Templates are great! This page is yours when you need to use dynamic, interactive charts and graphs! With the help of data visualization, you can support decision-makers.
Table of contents:
- 25+ Free Excel Chart Templates
All charts are free, and you can download and use them quickly. However, if you are working on an excel dashboard, you should have to use them. This section is built (not just) for pros. You can create all the demonstrated charts from the ground up, but we recommend using free templates.
25+ Free Excel Chart Templates
This definitive guide will help you how to tell stories with data using charts and graphs. If you are looking for ready-to-use chart templates, check the list below!
You can create various graphs in Excel, like a stream graph based on a standard stacked area chart. If you are working with numeric data types, a streamgraph is a smart choice to show the evolution of a variable on a flowing shape.
We rarely use area or stacked area charts in Excel, but the exception proves the rule! Nevertheless, the graph is popular; you can create it in Excel, Power BI, Java, Python, or R to present your data in a visually-effective way.
Mekko Chart (Market Segmentation Graph)
The Marimekko chart is the most powerful tool for taking a quick look at the overall market. It helps drive discussions about growth opportunities and is known as a market map. You can segment an industry or company by customer, region, or product.
It makes it easy for your audience to understand each part or bar’s relationship to the total. The graph breaks down a market by combining multiple bars into a single map using a variable-width 100% stacked bar chart. In the example, you’ll learn how to convert sales data of each region across different products. It’s easy to calculate the individual parts of total sales. Read our definitive guide!
Bubble Chart Template
A bubble chart is a member of a scatter chart type. In this case, we replace the data points with different size bubbles. We recommend using it to visualize your project milestones or sales over time.
Radial Bar Chart
A radial bar chart in Excel provides easy comparison options for multiple categories. Use the circular bar template to show the sales visually effectively. Unfortunately, Excel does not support this chart template by default, but no worries!
Click on the chart, and select a data point. Next, Right-click, choose the Select Data option, and swap rows and columns. After that, you can apply the No fill option on all rings. Read our step-by-step guide and download the template to learn more about comparing categories.
Conditional Bar Chart Template
Learn how to create a grouped chart to analyze the variance. Excel’s conditional formatting is a great feature; we recommend highlighting the plan vs. actual data. In the example, the first series is based on the actual data for the sales of five products. First, use the MAX function to find the largest data in a range. After that, highlight the maximum value using blue. The chart on the right side shows the variance.
Let’s see the trick! Select the chart! Right-click and click ‘Format data series.’ Under the Fill group, select the ‘Invert if negative’ checkbox. Pick your preferred colors! If the value is positive, use green as usual. Elsewhere we’ll apply red. Right-click and choose the Group command from the context menu. That’s all! Take a closer look at the template and download the practice file.
Progress Circle Chart
Sometimes simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. For example, you can combine two doughnut charts and apply custom chart formatting to create infographic-style visualization in Microsoft Excel.
The main advantage of using progress charts is saving space on the main dashboard screen. So, first, learn how to build this stunning graph in minutes and save it as a reusable Excel template. Then, if you are in a hurry, download the template.
Panel Chart (Small Multiples)
Take a closer look at the small multiples (panel charts). This tutorial will show how to create a proper layout for your data to create a panel chart in Microsoft Excel. Instead of busy line or column charts, you’ll get grouped graphs. To build sales comparisons, make your data table first. After that, summarize your data. Finally, calculate the position of the dividers for the x-axis. The best thing is that you don’t need to use pivot tables. Instead, check our step-by-step tutorial and create your chart template!
Progress Bar Chart (Score Meter Template)
The horizontal progress bar chart (or score meter template) shows the actual value on a percentage scale. You can create it using a few simple steps using stacked bar charts.
Insert a stacked bar chart, then add two additional series to create an indicator clearly showing the selected value. Using different colors, you can create multiple categories, for example, quality scales. Learn more about this template.
Do you like infographics? Use the people graph instead of columns or bars to present your data set using shapes and icons. The result is a great-looking chart. So, it’s easy to tell a story based on your data. Please take a closer look at our latest infographics. The article provides free Excel chart resources. Excel 2013 and above versions are required to use this chart template. You can find the add-in under the ‘Insert Tab.’ Select the data range, then click on the people graph icon. A new chart will appear; you can apply various formatting tricks like themes, shape styles, and colors.
The next one is a basic chart template. For example, in some cases, you want to show the actual and forecasted values on the same graph. What’s the secret? Create three series and use the IF function. If the latest data point (value) exceeds the actual value, apply a green arrow elsewhere and use a red marker. To build it, we’ll use a combination of three simple line charts to create a forecast. Read the guide!
Sparklines are tiny in-cell graphs. With its help, you can show powerful insights. In Excel, we use three types: line, column, and win/loss.
It is good to know that a sparkline is not a chart object; instead, it exists as a shape within a cell.
The gauges (speedometers) logic is simple: it provides information about a single data point (value). Therefore, using red, yellow, and green colors (that follow RAG reporting – red, amber, green), it’s easy to compare the actual value to a goal (plan value). We have said quite many times why we love this chart type.
Note: a Dual gauge can display more thane one KPI. It is helpful if you want to create a plan versus actual comparisons. Gauge charts are easy to readable and grab the attention of the audience. Almost all BI solutions use this graph to support strategic decisions.
What are bullet graphs? A bullet graph is an excellent alternative to gauges. The chart transforms data using length and height, position, and color to show actual vs. target using bands. Save more space using bullet graphs! Tell a story using segmented bar charts to display complex data. In our detailed guide, you can learn how to track progress easily. Check the example!
Sometimes we use dynamic charts to display the key metrics from a vast amount of data. Apply Excel Form controls (drop-down list, spin buttons, radio buttons) to improve your charts.
Use the first template to highlight a data point based on your selection. The second is a combination chart example; it uses two dynamic line charts and a bar chart. Finally, learn how to create interactive tooltips for your charts.
This template is a bit special. If you are working with Microsoft Excel, you’ll face some limits. Building a company structure from the ground up using SmartArt (built-in shape objects) is a time-consuming task. How to speed up your daily work and routine tasks? We know the correct answer. Use our free chart add-in and build an org structure in seconds. You’ll find a useful article about making a human map using powerful VBA tools. Get the add-in!
Traffic Light Chart Template
In Project Management, you have various tricks to track a project and show the actual status. First, you can apply a formula-based rule and traffic light icons in conditional formatting. Furthermore, there are color-formatted shapes to highlight the KPIs. The best way to implement a stoplight is using automated charts. Learn how to use our free widgets and manage multiple indicators simultaneously. It’s a straightforward reporting tool.
Waffle Chart Template
I met with the waffle chart several times while reading newspapers and magazines. Another name for them is a pie chart or square pie chart. However, a square or waffle chart template is a valuable alternative to other Excel charts.
The most significant advantage of using a waffle chart is that it is exciting and forwards the attention to your dashboard. On the other hand, the way of inserting it into your document can be confusing. However, the chart contains information presented as cells and values, so it is tricky to clean it up and export it as a built-in Excel chart.
The Pareto chart demonstrates the relative weight of the examined factors and helps us focus the development effort on the most important factors. A few improvements in the key factors can bring larger results instead of working on less critical fields.
Learn more on how to create it.
How to build a chart template in Excel?
The goal is to build reusable charts! Things to do before creating a chart template and modifying existing charts:
- Get rid of junk parts: The newly inserted chart contains unwanted elements. Using proper chart formatting, you need to remove the extra legends, labels, borders, or grids.
- Create easy-to-read charts: To improve readability, format the chart first. For example, remove the background, and decrease the gap between bars.
To create a custom chart and store it as a template, save the graph as a template! After that, open a new project: your saved chart template will appear and be ready to use.
Steps to build a chart template in Excel:
- Create a default chart and customize it
- Right-click the selected chart, then select ‘Save as Template’
- In the File name box, add a name for the new chart template
- Click Save to save the chart as a chart template (*.crtx)
That’s easy! You’ll find your chart template in the templates folder from now on.
How to use chart templates
OK, now we have a chart template; let’s see how to use it!
Steps to apply a chart template:
- Select the data that you want to display
- Click on ‘Recommended Charts’ under the Insert Tab
- Select the All Charts Tab
- Choose the template
- Click OK
How to manage chart Templates
Excel will save all chart templates to your computer (local drive). You can find your prepared chart under the location below:
You can reach this folder directly also.
To get the Template Gallery from Excel, click the ‘Manage Templates’ button.
Delete the chart if it’s not necessary anymore.