How to Create an Excel Bar Chart Side by Side with Secondary Axis

Dataset Overview

Suppose you have a dataset containing the sales quantity of two products over six months, and you want to create a bar chart based on this data.

Excel Bar Chart Side by Side with Secondary Axis

However, after creating a simple 2D column bar chart, you notice that the sales of product B are significantly higher than those of product A. Consequently, the heights of the product A columns appear very small in the chart. To address this, you need to add a secondary axis.Excel Bar Chart Side by Side with Secondary Axis

Follow these steps to create a bar chart with a side-by-side secondary axis in Excel (Windows operating system):

Step 1- Insert 2 New Columns

  • To achieve a secondary axis in a bar chart with side-by-side columns, you’ll need to use a workaround since Excel doesn’t provide a direct option for this.
  • Insert two new columns between the existing product columns. Right-click on column D and select Insert.

Insert 2 New Columns

  • Rename the newly inserted columns as Column 1 and Column 2.

Insert 2 New Columns

Step 2 – Create the Bar Chart

  • Select the entire data table and create a bar chart.
  • You’ll now have a basic bar chart.

Make Bar Chart

Read More: How to Sort Bar Chart in Descending Order in Excel

Step 3 – Apply the Secondary Axis

  • Right-click on any of the bar groups in the chart.
  • Choose Format Data Series.

Apply Secondary Axis

  • A new window will appear on the right side of the worksheet.
  • Select the Secondary Axis option.

Apply Secondary Axis

  • As a result, a new secondary vertical axis will appear on the right side of the chart, representing the values for product B, while the left side axis represents the values for product A.

Apply Secondary Axis

Read More: How to Change Bar Chart Color Based on Category in Excel

Step 4 – Remove Extra Columns

  • You can now remove the additional columns to achieve the desired side-by-side secondary axis effect.
  • Right-click on the legend in the chart.
  • Select Delete.

Remove Extra Columns

  • Now you have a bar chart with a secondary axis displayed side by side.

Excel Bar Chart Side by Side with Secondary Axis

Read More: How to Color Bar Chart by Category in Excel

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Osman Goni Ridwan
Osman Goni Ridwan

OSMAN GONI RIDWAN is a marine engineer who loves exploring Excel and VBA programming. Programming, to him, is a time-saving tool for efficiently managing data, files, and internet tasks. He is proficient in Rhino3D, Maxsurf, C++, MS Office, AutoCAD, Excel, and VBA and goes beyond the basics. Armed with a B.Sc in Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering from BUET, OSMAN has transitioned into the role of a content developer. Specializing in creating technical content exclusively centered around Excel... Read Full Bio

  1. Many thanks for this – brilliant way to leverage Excel graphing – appreciated!

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