How to use the Excel timeline template

Want to bring your Excel data to a visually striking timeline? Follow this guide to learn how to download and use a selection of free timeline templates directly from Microsoft. Add some Pizazz to your projects with just a few clicks.

The timeline template can be used in all versions of Excel from Excel 1997.

  1. Load a timeline template
  2. Using a template in Excel
  3. Change the default title
  4. Time change
  5. Move timeline markers
  6. Add events to the timeline
  7. Change panel settings

Load a timeline template

A selection of timeline templates are available for free on the Microsoft website.

Once on the site, follow these instructions:

  1. Click on any timeline template what you are interested in – make sure it says next to excel for compatibility.

  2. Press the button To download on the template page.

  3. The template will now be saved on your computer in a folder Downloads default.

Using a template in Excel

The downloaded template is a regular Excel sheet with added text boxes and certain formatting options. The timeline itself is created by adding borders to specific cells on the worksheet and entering dates in the cells below the timeline.

This way, everything in the timeline can be adapted to your needs. The following sections describe the most common changes you can make to a template.

Change the default title

You can start by changing the default title that comes with the timeline template. Follow these steps to customize your own timeline title.

  1. Double click on the timeline header
  2. Select sleep to highlight an existing title.
  3. Press key remove on the keyboard to delete the default title.

  4. Enter in your own head.

Time change

The template dates will generally not perfectly match the dates you want to use, you can change them by following these steps:

  1. double tap on the date in data chart you want to change.
  2. Press key remove on the keyboard to remove the default date.

  3. Enter new date.

Move timeline markers

If you are not satisfied with the position of the event label in the Excel document, you can change the position using the parameter Position in the data set.

  1. Search data you want to change in your dataset.
  2. In line data find the column Position and change the cell number to something nicer.

Larger number in cell Position will move the label further from the timeline and a smaller number will bring it closer. A negative number also places the label below the timeline, while a positive number places it above the timeline.

Add events to the timeline

The current number of events on your timeline might be ideal, but you’ll probably need to make some adjustments. To add additional labels to your timeline, do the following:

  1. Find bottom right corner are dataset

  2. Find a resource shopping center black or blue corner and with the mouse click and drag the tool down on the line for each additional data label you want to add.

  3. By adding a new line, enter all required information such as the date, the position of the label, and any associated text.

Change panel settings

You may want to make a few changes that differ from the default template, including adjusting the colors of the timeline and bar caps. Follow the instructions below for further adjustments.

To change the panel colors:

  1. Select every line on the timeline – now all lines should be selected.

  2. Select Chart Design tab on the adhesive tape – a window will open Formatting Error Strings

  3. Select Paint Bucket Tab you can now adjust the line style, color, opacity, width and more.

To change the caps on the panel,

  1. Select every line on the timeline – now all lines should be selected.

  2. Select Chart Design tab on the adhesive tape – a window will open Formatting Error Strings

  3. Select column panel tab you can now adjust the location of the stubs or disable them completely.

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