How to Use Dynamic Named Range in an Excel Chart (A Complete Guide)

This article illustrates how to use the dynamic named range feature in an Excel chart. Without the feature, we have to readjust the source data of a chart every time we add or remove data from the dataset to show the changes in the chart. To get rid of this unnecessary painful job, learn to make your chart dynamic with the use of named ranges.


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Use Dynamic Named Range in Chart in Excel (Step by Step Analysis)

The dynamic named range is a feature in Excel that adjusts the range automatically when we add or remove data to the range.

Step 1: Preparing a Dataset for Dynamic Named Range in Excel

In this article, we’re going to use the following dataset that illustrates the growth of the world population from 1950 to 2020. We want to make the dataset a dynamic named range. It means when we add a new row of data the range will expand accordingly.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

Read More: How to Use Named Range in Excel VBA (2 Ways)


Step 2: Creating the Dynamic Named Range to Use in Chart in Excel

To make our dataset a dynamic named range, follow the instruction below.

  • Go to the Formulas tab in the Excel Ribbon.
  • Click the Define Name option.

  • In the New Name window, type Year (same as the header name, for convenience) in the Name input box.
  • In the Scope dropdown list, select the Sheet1 option as our dataset is in the Sheet1 of the workbook.

  • Then in the input box named Refers to, put the following formula
=OFFSET(Sheet1!$B$2,0,0,COUNTA(Sheet1!$B:$B)-1,1)
  • Finally hit OK to save the settings.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • Follow the same procedure, to make the Population in Billions column a dynamic named range. In this case, use the following formula
=OFFSET(Sheet1!$C$2,0,0,COUNTA(Sheet1!$C:$C)-1,1)

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • To check the named ranges we created, click on the Name Manager button from the Formulas tab.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • In the Name Manager window, there are two name rangesYear and Population.

Formula Breakdown
Let’s breakdown the formula-

=OFFSET(Sheet1!$B$2,0,0,COUNTA(Sheet1!$B:$B)-1,1)

The syntax of the OFFSET function is-
=OFFSET(reference, rows, cols, [height], [width])
The function returns a reference to a range, where
reference– the starting point, in our formula, Sheet1!$B$2- is the first cell value in the Year column.
rows- a row offset, set it to 0 in our formula.
cols- a column offset, set it to 0 in our formula.
[height]- the height of the returned range. We used the COUNTA function to count all the no empty cells in column B. Here we subtracted 1, as the column has a header. Leave it if the column has no header.
[width]- the width of the returned range. Always set it to 1.

Read More: Create a Dynamic Chart Range in Excel (2 Methods)


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Step 3: Implementing the Use of the Dynamic Named Range in Excel Chart 

Now we’re going to use the dynamic named ranges in an Excel chart. Let’s follow the moves below to accomplish this.

  • Select an empty cell in the worksheet at a suitable place.
  • Go to the Insert tab in the Excel Ribbon.
  • Click on the Scatter Chart.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • From the options choose your preferable one.
  • There is an empty chart appeared on the worksheet.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • Now right click on the chart.
  • Then choose the Select Data.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • In the Select Data Source window, click on the Add button.

  • Click on the header of the column Population in Billions” to set the series name.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

  • Then, put “=Sheet1!Year” in the Series X values input box as we want to display the year values in the x ordinate. Here, the dynamic named range Year belongs to Sheet1, as we defined earlier.
  • Similarly, put “=Sheet1!Population”, the other dynamic named range i.e., Population in the Series Y values input box.
  • Finally hit Enter to go.

  • To save all these settings, click on the OK button in the Select Data Source

  • As the output, we’ve got the scatter plot showing the YearPopulation relation.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

Read More: How to Dynamically Change Excel Chart Data (3 Effective Methods)


Step 4: Checking the Use of Dynamic Named Range in Excel Chart

Now to check whether we could implement the dynamic named range in the Excel chart properly, put two more rows to the dataset. Let’s enter the predicted population for the years 2030 and 2040 in the dataset.

Excel Use Dynamic Named Ranged in Chart

The chart adjusted with two new entries automatically.

Read More: How to Create Chart with Dynamic Date Range in Excel (2 Easy Ways)


Things to Remember

  • We could implement the same functionality by converting our dataset into an Excel table, and then using it as the source of the chart. But in many cases, it is not a good choice to turn your dataset into a table.
  • While creating a named range, we should follow the naming conventions and the dataset should not have any blank cells in it.

Conclusion

Now, we know how to use the dynamic named ranges in the Excel chart. Hopefully, it would help you to use the functionality more confidently. Any questions or suggestions don’t forget to put them in the comment box below.


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Al Arafat Siddique

Al Arafat Siddique

Hello! This is Arafat. Here I'm researching Microsoft Excel. I did my graduation from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology(BUET). My interest in data science and machine learning allured me to play with data and find solutions to real-life problems. I want to explore this data-driven world and make innovative solutions.

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