Get creative in Excel using sparklines to show data trends

New in Microsoft® Excel® 2010, and later versions, a sparkline is a tiny chart in a worksheet cell that provides a visual representation of data. Use sparklines to show trends in a series of values, such as seasonal increases or decreases, economic cycles, or to highlight maximum and minimum values. For more impact, a sparkline should always be positioned near its data. Whilst this is not a PivotTable option, it is a great tool to use along with PivotTables.

In our example, we’ll display the monthly data trends for the different branches using a sparkline.

Applies To: Microsoft® Excel® 2010 and 2013.

Note: You are welcome to download the workbook to practice.

  1. Select cell O5 on the sparklines worksheet.
  2. Now select the Insert tab then line under the sparklines group.
  3. Select the data range B5:M5, then select OK.
  4. Right click on column O and adjust the column width to 30, then copy the sparkline to cell O8.
  5. Highlight rows 5:8 and right click on one of the selected rows and change the row height to 60.
  6. Select one of the sparklines under design tab select markers.


You have now created a visual representation of your data. It will be easy to analyze your monthly data using sparklines, helping you identify trends on the spot.