Add Data to Charts with Copy Paste [Quick Tip]

Posted on November 21st, 2011 in Charts and Graphs - 9 comments

So how did your weekend go?

I did a bit of gardening, painted our car shed, played badminton (I am learning), attended 60th birthday of a close friend’s dad. Pretty hectic, but fun as usual.

Add Data to Charts with Copy PasteTo start this week, let me share a simple but fun way to add data to charts.

Lets say you have a chart that depicts Annual sales for last few years. And you want to add the data of Profits (or Expenses) to this chart. Here is a dead-simple way to do it.

  1. Copy the profit data by selecting it and pressing CTRL+C
  2. Select the chart
  3. Paste by pressing CTRL+V
  4. That is all!

See the demo alongside to understand how this works.

Bonus Tips:

  1. While pasting, if you go for Paste Special (CTRL+ALT+V or ALT+E S) you can tell whether the data should be added as a new series or new points and several other things.
  2. To remove a series of data from a chart, just select the series and hit DEL key.
  3. To extend a series (ie add new points to it), select the series. Now you will see that Excel has highlighted the range of cells corresponding to that series. Just point your mouse at the bottom-right corner and resize the range to add new points to the chart.

More Quick Tips on Excel Charting

There are a ton of things you can do in Excel with a click of mouse or press of few keys. Whenever we learn something that is simple yet very useful, we share it as a quick tip. Browse thru these to learn more on Excel Charting.

Written by Chandoo
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9 Responses to “Add Data to Charts with Copy Paste [Quick Tip]”

  1. Jon Peltier says:

    If your just adding a column that's adjacent to the current chart data range, just drag the corners of the highlighted range (the same technique suggested here for extending a series).

  2. Fred says:

    Hi Chandoo,

    I found that:
    1. Crtl+Alt+V doesn't work on 2007 version. Only Alt+E S works on 2007.
    2. when I hi-light the series to be deleted, the whole chart was deleted. I had to double click on one data bar of the series (i.e. specifying just one bar) and hit the Del key to remove the entire series.

    • Hui... says:

      @Fred
      If you copy the data range you have to include the series name in the series
      Then you can select a chart, making sure to select the chart area
      Then Ctrl V, will paste a new series of data in based on your copy range

      You can't delete just 1 bar you have to delete a whole series
      Select the chart then select a series
      Press Delete

  3. Phil says:

    Hi,

    just wanted to tell you, that it's so cool how you show the workaround!
    Wow!

  4. Beeps says:

    Great shortcut! Comes in handy for secondary graphs!

  5. I use this tip since Excel 2003 and I love it! (just a little difference, of course)
    I don't like that now we can't use the F4 shortcut in chart format. 🙁
    Thanks for your tips!

  6. Senthilkumar_RM says:

    cool tip

  7. Ahmed says:

    This saves tons of time. Thank you for this article!

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