excel_graphThis post is an excerpt from the video series 4 Essential Microsoft Excel Skills Every Marketer Should LearnIf you want to become a master of the almighty spreadsheet, watch the full video series here.

Creating an Excel graph? Really? Doesn't everyone and their brother already know how to do that?

Here's the thing: While it might seem basic, a lot of people -- marketers included -- are just getting to know Excel. And considering that 6,600 folks search for the phrase "how to make a graph in Excel" every month, we figured a basic graph-making lesson was in order. 

How to Make a Graph in Excel

Being able to create a graph is one of the most basic -- and important -- Excel skills you can learn as a marketer.

For instance, want to see how something (e.g. the number of leads in your system) has changed over time? Whip up a line graph (or just set up a dashboard, if you're using HubSpot software). Want to see the percentage of a whole (e.g. the percentage of your site traffic that's organic)? Cook up a pie chart (HubSpot customers can also play around in Sources to see how their organic traffic compares to other traffic sources). Want to compare things in different groups? A column graph has got you covered.

In the video below, we use a column graph to compare companies with service level agreements (SLAs) to companies without SLAs to determine whether or not both groups could prove inbound marketing ROI.

Sound a bit complicated? Fear not! The almighty graph will make this comparison easy to understand.

Author's note: Keep in mind there are many different versions of Excel, so what you see in the video above might not always match up exactly with what you'll see in your version. That's why we encourage you to download the written instructions and demo data so you can follow along.

Download demo data | Download instructions (Mac) | Download instructions (PC)

Want to learn to do more in Excel? Click here to watch part two of our Excel video series, in which we'll show you how to organize data using a pivot table.

Not quite satisfied with how your graph turned out? Learn how to transform even the most boring of data into a thing of beauty with this post from Inbound Hub.

How often do you use Excel to help with your marketing? What other kinds of Excel tasks do you want to learn?

HubSpot Academy

Originally published Feb 5, 2014 4:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017