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Tag Archives: Sparklines
Today’s topic is Sparklines.
Sparklines are a new feature to Excel 2010 and 2011 that let you quickly obtain a visual representation of your data. Graphs in Excel are extremely useful, but sometimes they are overkill when all you need to show is a quick trend line. Also, adding multiple sets of data to one graph can clutter the graph and make it hard to read. Sparklines provide the perfect alternative to the standard graph and come with several unique features.
Here is a screenshot of one way sparklines can be used:
Widgets and Gidgets have the exact same amount of sales over the past seven years, but notice the lines to the left of the table. Those are the sparklines. The sparklines make it very clear that Widgets are booming and Gidgets and performing very poorly. With just one glance the problem is obvious thanks to the sparklines.
Here are the instructions to recreate the above sparklines:
1) Download the example spreadsheet here
2) Move your cursor into cell B5
3) PC: From the “Insert” menu in the “Sparklines” grouping select “Line” (Keyboard shortcut: Alt→N→S→L)