How to Insert an Excel Chart into PowerPoint (4 Easy Ways)

Below is a dataset containing a Company’s sales records for six employees from January to March. We are going to use this to plot a chart within Excel.

Excel dataset

To create the chart,

  • select the dataset (the range B5:E10) and go to the Insert tab on the ribbon. We can find a wide range of chart options from the Charts group.

selecting a 2-D column for the dataset

  • Select the one you prefer. We have selected a 2-D Column from the Column Chart drop-down and so we have the following chart to work with here.

chart prepared in Excel

Method 1: Using Keyboard Shortcuts to Paste a Chart from the Clipboard


  • Go to the Excel spreadsheet and select the chart by clicking on it.
  • Copy the chart using Ctrl+C.

copying the chart from Excel using keyboard shortcuts

  • Go to the PowerPoint slide where you want to paste the chart and press Ctrl+V.

pasting the chart using keyboard shortcut


Read More: How to Copy Chart from Excel to PowerPoint Without Link

Method 2: Insert a Chart from Clipboard Through PowerPoint’s Paste Option


  • Copy the chart from the Excel spreadsheet by pressing Ctrl+C.

copying the chart for the paste option method

Note: As we are using ribbon commands here, we can also do this by the Copy option available in the Clipboard group of the Excel ribbon.

  • Select Paste, available in the Clipboard group of the Home tab in Microsoft PowerPoint to insert it into the selected slide.

pressing paste in powerpoint


  • Select the downward-facing arrow below Paste to find more options and select the one you find appropriate.

paste options available in powerpoint

Note: The latter provides more control, consistency, and accessibility over the pasted content, not just for charts but for everything to paste from a clipboard.

Method 3: Link Dynamic Charts Using the Insert Command


This can be ignored in most cases, but it will be extremely helpful if the data changes constantly and the instantaneous data is more important for the presentation, especially in those spreadsheets where data is collected through online platforms automatically.

This method doesn’t require any copying like the other methods.

  • Go to the Insert tab on the Powerpoint ribbon and select Object from the Text.

inserting object option in powerpoint

  • A new box will pop up named Insert Object.
  • Select the Create from File option, Browse the Excel file that contains the chart, and check the Link.

inserting object from file option

  • Click OK.

Excel chart as an object in powerpoint

As we can see from the image above, this also imports the dataset along with the chart. This method imports the whole sheet from Excel and the slide will contain everything it has.

Note: This method only imports charts, datasets, and objects from the first spreadsheet. If the chart you are concerned about is in any other sheet, put it in the first one, or this will not work.

Method 4: Link an Excel Chart Using the Paste Special Option of PowerPoint


One advantage of the previous method is that it didn’t require the Excel file to open. However, it isn’t an issue for most of the users in most of the cases.

  • Copy the chart first from the Excel spreadsheet using the keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+C) or the Copy command in the ribbon.

copying the chart to use the paste special feature

  • Go to the slide in the PowerPoint and select the Paste Special option from the drop-down menu that appears once you click on the downward-facing arrow below the Paste.

paste special option in powerpoint

  • Select Paste Link on the left side of the Paste Special box that popped up and click OK.

paste link in the paste special box

  • This will insert the Excel chart into the PowerPoint file.

Insert Excel chart into PowerPoint

This method inserts the chart and connects them through a link. So once the Excel data or chart is updated, the chart in PowerPoint also updates.

Read More: How to Copy Table from Excel to Powerpoint with Formatting

How to Refresh Linked Excel Charts

One of the disadvantages involved in copying and pasting methods (1 & 2) is that it doesn’t update automatically every time data changes in the Excel worksheet. However, you can refresh the charts manually to counteract this problem.

Suppose, we change the data in cell E6 of our dataset.

change of data in spreadsheet

However, the chart in PowerPoint didn’t update automatically.

unchanged chart in powerpoint

In these cases, an option called Refresh Data can help us update the chart after editing the Excel file.

You can find the option in the Data group of the Chart Design tab from the PowerPoint ribbon.

refreshed chart in powerpoint

Note: The Chart Design and Format tabs appear on the ribbon only after you click on the chart.

How to Troubleshoot Linked Charts in Excel

It is not uncommon to encounter issues such as updates with linked charts. If you are facing these issues or just want to maintain them in your PowerPoint presentation, here are some troubleshooting steps.

  • Ensure the Excel file is in the same folder as when it was linked.
  • Check if the Excel file name has been changed. For the link to work, the file name should remain unchanged.
  • Be sure to save the workbook before linking.
  • Sometimes, you may have to update links manually. Right-click on the chart on PowerPoint and select Update Link to update the Excel file link. This is helpful if the file path or name is changed.
  • Check for missing data in Excel.
  • Check for compatibility issues and updates for both Excel and PowerPoint.
  • Recreate the chart.

Things to Remember

  • Make sure you have selected the chart before copying it.
  • Use Paste for a static chart copied from Excel; use Paste Special to enable the link option.
  • The Chart Design and Format tabs will only appear if you have selected the chart.

Download the Practice Files

You can download the workbook and the PowerPoint file used for the demonstration from the link below.

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Yousuf Khan
Yousuf Khan

Yousuf Khan has been working with the ExcelDemy project for over one year. He has written 47+ articles for the ExcelDemy site. He also solved a lot of user problems with ExcelDemy Forum. He has interests in Excel & VBA, Desktop and mobile applications, and projects & templates. He completed his graduation and post-graduation in Information Technology from Jahangirnagar University. Currently, he works as a VBA & Excel Content Developer in ExcelDemy projects, writing unique and informative content... Read Full Bio

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