6 Examples of Redesigning Boring Excel Charts in a PowerPoint

Many presentations are made a day before meetings, if not an hour :). No wonder they look pretty default. Don’t loose the power of your final data presentation due to lack of preparation time.

Wanna know how you can quickly replace default data table or charts by something more attractive? Keep reading.

We’ve put together a bunch of ideas how to present data using vivid infographic charts. See six examples of redesigned pie charts, history or trend line plots, comparing several charts and enhanced bar charts.

presenting numbers goal credibility engagement

Presenting facts, statistics and other numerical figures is the essence of pretty every business presentation.  Whether you do a quarterly review, investor pitch or project status meeting.

Their main role of presenting numbers is to give credibility to your message. Showing real numbers also engage your audience more than other abstract presentation parts.

To make your charts presentation stand out from the others, avoid a default Excel look of data charts. Move your data visualizations to next level. Get inspired by the following redesigned data chart.

All chart pictures below use template from our Data Charts PPT Infographics (see details by clicking the picture. You can get a commercial version here). 

The template is a handy timesaver. However, with some little work, you can redesign default charts also by yourself. Let our chart design be an inspiration for you. Sometimes adding a simple shape or icon will do wonders :).

Six common data presentation cases

#1: Comparing several KPI values by single value pie charts

Need to show percentage or compare several products or projects? Pie charts are a great tool for that. You can place text on the white or colored background, or make charts bigger and eliminate the amount of description. Notice how adding a simple background shape improves the look of the data presentation. Now it’s more the infographics than a standard MS Office chart, isn’t it?

infographics pie chart description kpi

You can order charts horizontally by their values:

pie chart compare comparison financial data


#2: Enhancing pie chart with illustrated data legend

For cases when you have to present numerical data in one chart, you can apply such legend illustration by adding category icons and adjusting the chart colors:

statistics pie chart infographics ppt

To dig into data details, you can place other line charts in the legend itself, which will look good in tandem with main data.

Quick tip: don’t illustrate too many categories on one pie chart. Recommended number is up to 6, max 8 categories. If you have more, consider using bar char instead.


#3: Bar charts for presenting and comparing data

If you add to the standard bar chart a bit of design touch and flat icons, you can quickly improve it’s attractiveness, while still using data editable MS Office charts.

See below how we redesigned a bar chart for representing trade statistics – you can adjust chart colors and add illustrative icons for each data category.

bar chart data infographics ppt

You can experiment a bit and use two-sided charts within slides (with the colorful background if you wish). This is a case when you need to compare two values for each category e.g. import and export of commodities, or male – female age distribution:

bar chart colorful background financial infographics two-sided


#4: Line plots to show history or trends evolution over a time

Is your slide about upcoming trends, progress or performance over last period? Then you’ll use a classical line chart :) This can be also enhanced using a few design tricks, see our proposals below.

line chart stacked area description

Design advice: For good readability, don’t put more than four categories in one line chart, it will be too crowded. Better create another line chart below with the same time axes but next data categories.


#5: Column charts to compare several items over time

The alternative to line plot is column chart with time on horizontal axes.

The same about column chart – it is suitable for any presentation, but don’t put too much data on one slide. Better to break it into several.

If you decided to create stacked chart, then use contrasting colors for greater clarity, see the picture below.

column chart kpi ppt data presentation

#6: Presenting data on geographical maps

The last example shows how you can present a location based data charts. If you want to present some economic or demographical statistics related to specific state or country, you can try this:

  • create a simplified chart (remove axis, keep only essential data). Place the over a map
  • create a copy of your simplified chart and edit its data. Then move this chart to the location it refers too.

This way you can rather quickly create a simple infographic while having all charts editable. See example below of showing charts placed on specific US states:

column pie data charts infographics ppt

Whatever chart type you choose, ensure it is readable and your audience can easily catch the main idea while looking at it.

Presenting information in such visual way is much more engaging, than just writing numbers aside.

Further reading on data presentations

Still not sure what chart type to choose? Ask us for advice or get some inspiration checking these resources:

Downloadable resources: Data Charts Design PPT Template

All examples are from our infoDiagram PowerPoint Diagrams collection. It contains several types of data charts, which can be easily edited and added to other presentation. To check our Data-Driven Presentation Charts PPT Template see the link:

See the Slide-deck



PS. What data chart type do you use the most frequently: Pie chart? Line chart? Bar chart? Comment below.

About Peter Z

Chief Diagram Designer, infoDiagram co-founder