A well-maintained spreadsheet can be an invaluable tool for any business. Excel dashboard reports are a simple yet effective way to pass data and visuals to your target audience. Investing time and effort into creating a professional dashboard report can help to communicate data more efficiently, while also helping to make a great first impression!

In this blog post, we'll explore 10 key tips that will help you create a professional dashboard report with minimal effort. Read on to discover how to get the most out of Excel for maximum impact!

Using Themes to Enhance Reports

Reports are more likely to be professional and presentable when properly formatted. One way to do this is to use themes to your advantage. Themes are collections of preset color and font styles that you can choose to give your report a more refined and modern look. This can help to make your Excel reports look more professional.

Themes are Preset Color and Font Styles

A theme is a predefined set of colors and fonts which you can apply to your Excel reports. Themes allow you to quickly change the overall look and feel of your report with just a few clicks. You can also customize your themes and make further adjustments to the colors and fonts as needed. This is a great way to create a more consistent and professional look to your report.

Themes Can Help Create a Professional Report

Using themes to modify the look and feel of your report can be a great way to showcase the data in a more visually appealing way. Themes can help your report stand out from the rest and make it easier for viewers to comprehend the contents of a report. It also allows you to quickly format your report without having to manually adjust the colors and fonts. Some of the features that themes can offer are:

  • Color palettes to help choose colors that best compliment the report
  • Fonts to adjust the text styling and size
  • Customizable formatting options

Using themes to modify the styling of your Excel report can help to give it a more professional look. This can be especially important when sharing reports with colleagues or presenting them to a client.

Adding Charts and Graphs

Charts and graphs are an effective way to quickly show your key data points. Although these graphics seem simple, there are some tricks to making them look professional in your Excel dashboard reports.

Charts and Graphs Make Attractive, Clear Reports

Charts and graphs are very effective for representing a large amount of data in a clear, concise manner. They’re also visually appealing, which is especially important for data presentations. Since most users will get their first impression of your data from the charts and graphs, it’s important to make sure they’re accurate and look professional.

Formatting Charts and Graphs for Professional Reports

The first step for making your charts and graphs look professional is to add labels and titles to them. Labels should explain the meaning of the y-axis, x-axis and parts of the graph that need explanation. Titles should describe the key point of the chart or graph. Labels and titles should be kept short and to the point.

You may also want to add color and shading to your charts and graphs. Adding color and shading helps to separate different elements of the graph and make it easier to read. Furthermore, choose colors that evoke the purpose of the chart, such as shades of blue for representing cold weather or shades of green for representing profits.

Another important part of professional Excel dashboards is the use of consistent formatting. Make sure that all your charts and graphs have the same font and color schemes. This will help to create a cohesive report and make it easier to read. Finally, maintain an overall tidy layout with your Excel dashboard by using alignment and spacing to separate data sets.

Applying Filter Views

Filter Views are a great way to turn your Excel Dashboard into a sleek, professional looking report. You can easily create filters that hone in on certain data points of interest and reduce the clutter of having too many elements on a single dashboard.

Filter Views Allow for Less Clutter

Filter Views allow you to tailor reports to fit the audience and the presentation, without bogging it down with unnecessary information. For example, filtering by dates can narrow down a report to include only those for the most recent month. Or you can use filters to restrict a report to a certain region or product line.

Filters are Easy to Create and Manage

Creating and managing filters is a breeze. First, select the data points you want to filter. Then, click the “Filter” button in the ribbon and make your desired selections from the drop-down menus. You can also create advanced filtering options by using a few extra options in Excel. You can easily delete or change filters whenever you like. It’s a simple, fool-proof way to customize the data in your Excel Dashboard reports.

Managing Formatting Elements

Visualizing data through Excel dashboard reports is an essential task for many professions including finance and marketing. Reports must be concise and professional for the reader to make the best judgment needs. When reviewing how to make the report more visually appealing, it is important to take formatting into account.

Applying Consistent Formatting Across Reports

It is important to give your Excel dashboard reports a consistent overall look, to provide visual unity and consistency. Start by choosing a style - use bold or consistent font styles, cell color and font color to unify the report. Thus, in order to make the report look professional and make sure it is easy to read, one must keep an eye on applying the same look throughout the report.

Removing Unnecessary Formatting

Leave out unnecessary formatting, such as shadows, 3D objects and shapes. They take up unnecessary space and make it difficult to read the report. In addition, inserting too many colors also takes away from periodical reports. Therefore, it is essential to know when to use color and when to avoid it. Limit color formatting to key areas such as titles and headings, and keep the same color for subsequent pages.

6. Automating with Macros

Having your Excel dashboard reports automatically updated with every new report generated can save you a lot of time and energy. You can do this by setting up automatic macros to update your data quickly and easily. By automating various tasks, you can vastly reduce the time and energy required to manually update your reports.

A. Creating Macros to Update Data with Every Report

Creating macros to automatically update data with every report can be done quickly and easily all within Microsoft Excel. All you have to do is select the data you would like to include and then click the ‘Macro’ button on the ‘Developer’ tab and then select ‘Record Macro’. After selecting the data you would like to include and indicating the start point, you can then move on to the ‘Macro window’ and configure your macro to run each time the report is generated. When you’re finished configuring your macro, simply click ‘Stop Recording’ to record and save the macro.

B. Automate Tasks and Save Time

By automating various tasks, you can save time and energy by not having to manually update your reports. This can include tasks such as formatting charts and columns, sorting data, updating formulas, etc. Excel’s macros will help automate these tedious tasks quickly and easily. For more advanced users, you can even create macros with multiple steps and conditions.

  • You can create macros to format charts and columns
  • You can create macros to sort data
  • You can create macros to update formulas
  • You can create macros with multiple steps and conditions for advanced users


Creating a clean, professional-looking Excel dashboard report can transform data into a user-friendly, visually appealing format that businesses can leverage to make strategic decisions. By utilizing the 10 tips outlined above, you will be well on your way to producing high-impact, effective dashboards that will help improve organizational performance.

From formatting your data properly to utilizing graphical visuals and referencing functions, the skills learned through implementing these tricks will help you put together an Excel dashboard that stands out. With a few simple tweaks, you can transform your raw data into a visually appealing, professional format.

Now that you have a few tips up your sleeve, you should have the confidence to create a top-notch Excel dashboard. So, what are you waiting for? Start improving the look of your Excel dashboard reports and making them more professional today!

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