How to Create Mind Map from Data in Excel (2 Common Ways)

Looking for a way to create a mind map in Excel? You have landed in the right place. Although Excel allows a user to create charts and sparklines for better visualization of the data, it doesn’t contain any tool directly for creating a mind map from some data. But don’t worry at all. There are ways to create a mind map using Excel features. In this article, I will show you how to create a mind map from data in Excel.

What Is a Mind Map?

A mind map is basically a special type of diagram arranged in order of rank on the basis of a concept. It helps to analyze data and organize them in a structured way on the basis of a central concept.

The main concept of a mind map is covered by a group of sub-concepts, and each sub-concept may have branches of its own. Altogether, this map will represent an overall idea.

In this section, you will find 2 practical ways to create a mind map from data in Excel. I will demonstrate them one by one here. Let’s check them now!

1. Creating a Mind Map with SmartArt Feature

Let’s say we have got a dataset of the steps needed for Online Content Writing.

Dataset to Create Mind Map in Excel

We want to make a mind map using the dataset needed for content writing. We can perform this task with a special feature of Excel: SmartArt. It is one of the smart options for creating a mind map. There are several layouts for SmartArt in Excel: List, Process, Cycle, Relationship, Matric, etc. In order to create a mind map with this feature, proceed with the following steps.

📌 Steps:

  • First of all, go to the Insert tab> click the Illustration option> select SmartArt from the options.

Use SmartArt Feature to Create Mind Map in Excel

  • Then, a box with the title Choose a SmartArt Graphic will appear.
  • Here, you will find different types of shapes for making a mind map.

  • Now, select any type of Graphic as per your need and choice. I have selected the Radial Cycle graphic for my data. Click OK.

SmartArt Graphic to Create Mind Map in Excel

  • Now, the Radial Cycle graphic format and a box for the field of the visual format named Type your text here will appear.

  • Here, if you click on the .[Text] field on the box, the field will be increased. You will see that in the graphic format.

  • After that, type the text from which you want to form a mind map. The main field will denote the center, and the sub-field will denote the components of the mind map.

Create Mind Map with SmartArt Feature

2. Creating Mind Map Manually by Using Shapes

You can create a mind map manually as per your choice. For this purpose, you have to use different shapes and arrange them in a decent way.  For creating a mind map manually by using shapes. follow the steps below.

📌 Steps:

  • Firstly, go to the Insert tab> click the Illustration option> select Shapes from the options.
  • Then, a list of different shapes will appear. Select a shape.

Create Mind Map with Shapes

  • After that, the cursor will be changed to an icon like a plus (+) sign. Drag the icon on the sheet over a certain area where you want to drop the shape.

  • The following GIF will show the procedure.

Use Shapes to Create Mind Map

  • Now, drop as many shapes as you need as per your data and arrange them in a way to create a mind map.

  • After that, double-click on each of the shapes and enter the text. And your mind map will be ready.

Read More: How to Map Data Using VLOOKUP in Excel

Customize Mind Map

You can also customize the shapes of the mind map you have created. Just click on any of the shapes, and a tab named Shape Format will appear on the ribbon.

  • Go to the tab, and you will find two groups of options: Shape Styles and WordArt Styles. Under the Shape Styles group, there are options like Shape Fill, Shape Outline, and Shape Effects. And under the WordArt Styles group, there are options like Text Fill, Text Outline, and Text Effects.

  • Here, you can choose your corresponding fill, outline, and effect, and customize your mind map.

Customize Mind Map in Excel

Things to Remember

  • Create a mind map manually when you have enough time in your hand.
  • Choose the Relationship style for the SmartArt feature when you are not sure which graphic you should use for creating a mind map.

Download Practice Workbook

You can download the practice book from the link below.


In this article, I have tried to show you some methods to create a mind map from data in Excel. Hope you find the article helpful. If you have better techniques, questions, or feedback regarding this article, please don’t forget to share them in the comment box.

Happy Excel!

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Rafiul Hasan
Rafiul Hasan

Rafiul Hasan, holding a BSc in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology, contributes significantly to the ExcelDemy project with almost 1.6 years of dedicated work. Currently an Excel and VBA Content Developer, he has a passion for problem-solving. Authoring over 100 articles for ExcelDemy showcases expertise in Microsoft Office Suites and Data Analysis. In addition to content development, Rafiul actively engages with the ExcelDemy forum, offering valuable solutions to user queries and... Read Full Bio

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