Animate Specific Parts of a PowerPoint Chart

Bring graphs to life in a slideshow

When your PowerPoint presentation is full of data and charts, liven up your slideshow by animating the chart elements. Make different parts of the chart stand out while you talk about them.

Instructions in this article apply to PowerPoint for Microsoft 365, PowerPoint 2019, PowerPoint 2016, PowerPoint 2013, and PowerPoint 2010.

Animate Chart Elements

The default setting for the animation of a PowerPoint chart is to apply the animation to the whole chart. In this scenario, the chart moves all at once, with no specific focus on anything in particular. However, different aspects of the chart can be shown separately by applying animations to individual chart elements.

  1. Open a PowerPoint slide containing a chart (or insert a chart onto a slide).

    This article uses a column chart in the example, but other types of charts work similarly. If you don't have a column chart, select Insert > Chart > Column.

  2. Select a blank area of the chart to select the entire chart.

  3. Select the Animations tab.

    A screenshot of the Animations tab in PowerPoint.
  4. In the Advanced Animation group, select Add Animation.

    Screenshot of Add Animation
  5. Choose one of the entry animation options in the first group at the top of the screen, such as Appear or Dissolve In.

  6. Select Effect Options and choose one of the five options listed.

Experiment with the different Effect Options to decide which method works best with your chart. These are the five choices:

  • Choose As One Object to apply a single animation to the entire chart. This is the default setting.
  • Choose By Series to animate the chart using the legend at the bottom of the chart.  
  • Choose By Category to use the information shown along the X-axis. This information has headings along the bottom of the chart.
  • Choose By Element in Series to animate one element in a series at a time. In the example of a column chart, the corresponding column in the chart for each topic heading listed in the legend animates one after the other. The next topic heading column in the legend animates one after another.
  • Choose By Element in Category to animate one element in a category at a time. The corresponding chart column for each topic heading listed as a category shown along the bottom of the chart displays before going on to the next category heading column.

Customize Chart Animations

After you select an animation, adjust the timing of the individual steps of the animation.

  1. Select Animations > Animation Pane to open the Animation Pane.

  2. Select the drop-down arrow below the chart listing to view the individual steps of the animation option you chose.

    A screenshot of the PowerPoint Animation Pane.
  3. Select the drop-down arrow for an animation and choose Timing.

  4. Select a Delay time for each step and select OK when you're finished.

    A screenshot of the Chart animation timing feature in PowerPoint.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for each chart element.

  6. Select Animations > Preview to see your animation.

    A screenshot of the Preview animations feature in PowerPoint.
  7. Adjust the time of each animation step in the Timing tab to adjust the animation speed, making it faster or slowing it down.

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