How to use sparklines in Excel: Creating a Miniature Chart in a Cell

How to use Sparklines in Excel ?

Imagine you have result sheet for your students over the last 5 years and instead of creating a chart in Excel, which takes time. In that case, you are thinking if some small mini-charts in a single cell would be better.

Ever had a worksheet of data in Excel and quickly wanted to see the trend in the data?

Sparklines are excellent ways to show in a small space the trends or variations in a large volume of data. Excel 2010, 2013 and 2016 have a cool feature called sparklines that basically let you create mini-charts inside a single Excel cell. You can add sparklines to any cell and keep it right next to your data. In this way, you can quickly visualize data on a row by row basis. It’s just another great way to analyze data in Excel.

What is Sparkline?

Unlike charts on an Excel worksheet, sparklines are not objects — a sparkline is actually a tiny chart in the background of a cell.

Why use sparklines?

Data presented in a row or column is useful, but patterns can be hard to spot at a glance. The context for these numbers can be provided by inserting sparklines next to the data. Taking up a small amount of area, a sparkline can display a trend based on adjacent data in a clear graphical representation. You can quickly see the relationship between a sparkline and its underlying data, even when your data changes you can see the change in the sparkline immediately.

Case Study:

In this example, we will use a database of an electronics shop that contain profits from each products from last 5 months. We want to see the trend of profit of the particular product beside it. How we can do this?! Using Sparkline…!!

Let’s go through the following steps to create sparklines for this example.

How to use sparklines in excel

Steps 1: Create a table in an excel sheet same as like above picture. In the cells of column G, we will create sparklines based on the left side cell values.

go to Insert tab

Step 2: Click on the cell G2 and go to Insert tab.

click Line

Step 3: In the Sparklines group click Line.

Create Sparkline Dialog box

Step 4: Create Sparkline Dialog box now appeared. Now in Data Range select range B2:F2 from row 2. Now click OK.

sparkline showing the trend of the values included in row 2

Step 5: Now we will get the sparkline showing the trend of the values included in row 2 like above picture.

: Do Step 2 to Step 5 again for another rows 3-6

Step 6: Do Step 2 to Step 5 again for another rows 3-6. Then our table will be looked like above picture.

There are another shortcut way to create sparklines for the rest of rows

Tips 1: There is another shortcut way to create sparklines for the rest of rows:

Select Cell G2, then Click on the lower right little pointer of the selection and drag it below to cell G6. You will get the same result!

Change the styles of Sparklines

Tips 2: Change the styles of Sparklines!

Select sparklines and go to Design tab. After selection Design tab will show a lot of options to add markers inside sparklines based on your requirements like High point, Low point etc. You can also choose a Design and Color for sparkline from design tab. With these there are some other features like Axis, Edit data, marker color and so on.

Now you have successfully learn how to create sparkline  and how to design it! Enjoy Excel….!

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