Understand data series, data points, and data labels from Excel charts

  1. Better understand charts in Excel and Google Sheets
  2. Data series and other chart elements in Excel
  3. Change Individual Data Markers
  4. Change color of one column
  5. Highlight data with a growing pie chart
  6. Add emphasis with a combination diagram

Better understand charts in Excel and Google Sheets

How to use charts and graphs in Excel and Google Sheets data points data markers and data labels for data visualization and information transfer. To create more powerful charts, learn how each of these elements works and how to use them correctly.

The information in this article applies to Excel 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, Excel for Mac, and Excel Online.

Data series and other chart elements in Excel

data point † A single value in a worksheet cell that is displayed in a chart or graph.

data mark A column, dot, pie chart, or other symbol in a chart that represents a data value. For example, in a line chart, each point on the line is a data marker that represents a single data value in a worksheet cell.

data label † Provides information about individual data markers, such as a value displayed as a number or percentage. Common data labels in spreadsheet programs include:

  • Numeric Values taken from individual data points on the worksheet.
  • Series names † Defines the columns or rows of chart data on a worksheet. Series names are often used for bar charts, bar charts, and line charts.
  • Category names † Identifies individual data points in a single data series. They are often used for pie charts.
  • percentage points † It is calculated by dividing the individual fields of the series by the total value of the series. Percentage labels are often used for pie charts.

Data series A group of related data points or markers displayed on charts and graphs. Examples of a data series are individual lines in a line chart or bars in a bar chart. When multiple data series are displayed on the same plot, each data series is identified by a unique color or hatch pattern.

Not all charts contain groups of related data or data series. The example image above does not contain a string of data.

In column or column charts, if multiple bars or columns have the same color or image (in the case of an icon), they form a single data series.

Pie charts are usually limited to one data series per chart. The individual slices of a pie chart are data markers, not a series of data.

Change individual data markers

If you want to draw attention to a particular data marker, make it look different from the rest of the group. All you need to do is resize the data marker.

For example, the color of one bar in a bar chart or one point in a line chart can be changed without affecting other points in the series. A data marker with a different color from the rest of the group appears on your chart.

Change color of one column

  1. Select data series in a bar chart. All columns of the same color are highlighted. Each column is surrounded by a border with small dots at the corners.

  2. Select the column in the chart you want to change. Only this column is marked.

  3. Select Format

    When a chart is selected, the ribbon tools appear on the ribbon and contain two tabs. Format tab and Design tab.

  4. Select fill form to open the Fill Colors menu.

  5. In chapter choose standard colors Blue

This same sequence of steps will also change one point on the line chart. Just select a single point (marker) on the line instead of a single column.

Highlight data with a growing pie chart

Individual segments of a pie chart usually come in different colors. So extracting a single segment or data point requires a different approach than that for bar and line charts. Emphasis is usually added to pie charts by making a piece of the pie stand out from the rest of the chart.

Add emphasis with a combination diagram

Another option to highlight different types of information on a chart is to display two or more types of charts on the same chart, such as a bar chart and a line chart. This approach is used when the displayed values ​​vary widely or when different types of data are collected.

A typical example is the climatograph or a climate graph that combines rainfall and temperature data for the same location on one map. In addition, combined or combined Graphs are created by plotting one or more data series on a secondary vertical or y-axis.

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