Excel Chart Templates

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 the decision-makers.

Table of contents:

  1. How to build a chart template in Excel
  2. Basic Charts
  3. Advanced 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.

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:

  1. 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.
  2. Create easy-to-read charts: To improve the readability, format the chart first. For example, remove the background, and decrease the gap size 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:

  1. Create a default chart and customize it
  2. Right-click the selected chart, then select ‘Save as Template’
  3. In the File name box, add a name for the new chart template
  4. Click Save to save the chart as a chart template (*.crtx)
how to create a chart template in Excel

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:

  1. Select the data that you want to display
  2. Click on ‘Recommended Charts’ under the Insert Tab
  3. Select the All Charts Tab
  4. Choose the template
  5. Click OK
how to use a chart template

How to manage chart Templates

All chart templates will be saved to your computer (local drive). You can find your prepared chart under the location below:


template location folder

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.

how to manage chart templates

Basic Chart Templates

Let us see the basics. Then, if you are looking for ready-to-use chart templates, check the list below!

Market Segmentation Graph (Mekko Chart)

mekko graph market segmentation

The Marimekko chart is the most powerful tool for taking a quick look at the overall market. It helps to drive discussions about growth opportunities and is also 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!

Conditional Bar Chart Template

conditional bar chart

Learn how to create a grouped chart to analyze the variance. Conditional formatting is a great feature in Excel; 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. 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.

Panel Chart

sales comparison panel with small multiples

Take a closer look at the small multiples graphs (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 a busy line or column charts, you’ll get grouped graphs. To build sales comparisons, create 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!

People Graph

people graph

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 for you 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.

Forecast Chart

forecast chart v2

The next one is a basic chart template. For example, you want to show the actual and forecasted values on the same graph in some cases. What’s the secret? Create three series and use the IF function. If the latest data point (value) is greater than 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!



This small in-cell graph fits in a single cell but shows powerful insights! It does not chart objects; instead, they exist as a shape within a cell.

Read more about sparklines!

Advanced Chart Templates

This section is built for pros. You can create all the demonstrated charts from the ground up but recommend using free templates.

Gauge Chart

gauge chart example

The gauge chart’s logic (speedometer) is very simple: it provides information about a single data point (value). Therefore, it’s easy to compare the actual value to a goal (plan value) using red, yellow, and green colors. We have said quite many times why we love this chart type.

Good to know: Dual Gauge can display more thane one KPI, and it’s great for plan vs. actual purposes. Gauge charts are easy to read and grab the attention of the audience. As a result, the chart is widely used in BI.

Learn more about gauges!

Bullet Chart

bullet graph

What are bullet graphs? A bullet graph is a great 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!

Org Chart


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

stoplight chart

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. Download

Stay tuned and read more about chart templates!