Excel Tutorial: How To Make A Histogram In Excel Online


If you've ever had to analyze a large set of data, you know the importance of visualizing that data in a way that is easy to understand. This is where a histogram comes in. A histogram is a graphical representation of data that shows the frequency distribution of a set of continuous data. In other words, it helps you see the spread and shape of the data. In data analysis, creating a histogram is crucial for gaining insights and making informed decisions based on the data at hand.

Key Takeaways

  • A histogram is a graphical representation of data that shows the frequency distribution of a set of continuous data.
  • Creating a histogram is crucial for gaining insights and making informed decisions based on the data at hand.
  • Excel Online provides a convenient platform for creating and analyzing histograms.
  • Properly formatting and organizing data is essential for creating an accurate histogram in Excel Online.
  • Interpreting and analyzing the histogram can help identify patterns and trends within the data.

Accessing Excel Online

Excel Online is a web-based version of the popular Microsoft Excel application, allowing users to create, edit, and collaborate on spreadsheets in a browser. Here's how you can access Excel Online:

  • Step 1: Open a web browser and go to the Microsoft Office Online website.
  • Step 2: Sign in with your Microsoft account or create a new one if you don't have one already.
  • Step 3: Once signed in, click on the Excel icon to access the online version of the application.

Differences between Excel Online and desktop version

While Excel Online offers many of the same features as the desktop version, there are some key differences to be aware of:

  • Storage: Excel Online files are stored in the cloud on OneDrive, whereas the desktop version allows for local storage on your computer.
  • Features: Excel Online may have limited functionality compared to the desktop version, especially with more advanced features and add-ins.
  • Collaboration: Excel Online is designed for real-time collaboration, allowing multiple users to work on a spreadsheet simultaneously, whereas the desktop version may require additional tools for this.

Organizing Data

When creating a histogram in Excel, organizing your data is essential for a successful outcome. In this chapter, we will discuss how to format your data for histogram creation and how to utilize Excel's features for data organization.

  • Formatting data for histogram creation:
  • Before you can create a histogram in Excel, you need to ensure that your data is properly formatted. This includes arranging your data in a single column or row, with the first cell containing the label for the data, and subsequent cells containing the data points.

  • Utilizing Excel's features for data organization:
  • Excel offers a range of features that can help you organize your data effectively. This includes the use of filters, sorting, and data validation to ensure that your data is clean and organized before creating a histogram.

Creating the Histogram

Excel Online provides a user-friendly interface for creating histograms, which can be a powerful tool for visualizing data distribution. Follow these steps to create a histogram in Excel Online:

A. Step-by-step guide to creating a histogram in Excel Online
  • Step 1: Open your Excel Online spreadsheet and select the data range you want to use for the histogram.
  • Step 2: Go to the "Insert" tab at the top of the page and click on the "Charts" option.
  • Step 3: Choose the "Histogram" chart type from the options available.
  • Step 4: Your histogram will appear on the spreadsheet, and you can further customize it by adding axis labels, titles, and data labels.

B. Customizing the histogram design and layout
  • Step 5: To customize the design and layout of the histogram, click on the chart to select it. This will enable the "Chart Tools" tab at the top of the page.
  • Step 6: Under the "Chart Tools" tab, you can change the chart style, color scheme, and layout to better suit your needs.
  • Step 7: You can also modify the axis scales, add trendlines, and customize the legend by using the options available under the "Chart Tools" tab.
  • Step 8: Once you are satisfied with the design and layout of your histogram, you can save the changes and use it for your data analysis and visualization.

Analyzing the Histogram

After creating a histogram in Excel, it's important to understand how to analyze the data it presents. This can help in making informed decisions and identifying potential trends or patterns.

A. Interpreting the histogram's data
  • Understanding the distribution: The histogram provides a visual representation of the distribution of data. By analyzing the shape of the bars, you can determine whether the data is skewed to the left, skewed to the right, or normally distributed.
  • Identifying central tendencies: The histogram allows you to identify the center of the data distribution, including the mean, median, and mode. This can be helpful in understanding the average value or most common occurrence within the data set.
  • Recognizing variability: By analyzing the spread of the bars, you can gain insights into the variability of the data. This can help in understanding the range of values and the presence of outliers.

B. Using the histogram to identify patterns and trends
  • Spotting peaks and valleys: Peaks and valleys in the histogram can indicate patterns or trends within the data. Identifying these can help in understanding potential fluctuations or patterns in the data.
  • Detecting clusters and gaps: The presence of clusters and gaps in the histogram can provide insights into the frequency of certain values and potential gaps in the data. This can be useful in identifying areas that require further investigation.
  • Comparing multiple datasets: If comparing multiple datasets, histograms can be used to visually compare the distributions and identify differences or similarities between the datasets.

Sharing and Collaborating

When working on a project, it is often necessary to share your work with others and collaborate in real-time. Excel Online offers a range of options to easily share and collaborate on histograms with your team or colleagues.

A. Sharing the histogram with others

Sharing your histogram in Excel Online is simple and straightforward. You can easily invite others to view or edit the histogram by sending them a link or adding their email addresses. This allows you to easily share your work with stakeholders, team members, or anyone else who needs to view the histogram.

B. Collaborating on the histogram in real-time

One of the key advantages of using Excel Online is the ability to collaborate on the histogram in real-time. This means that multiple users can work on the histogram simultaneously, making changes and updates that are instantly visible to all collaborators. This real-time collaboration feature is extremely useful for teams working on a project together, as it allows for seamless communication and the ability to quickly make adjustments as needed.


In conclusion, histograms play a crucial role in data analysis by providing a visual representation of the distribution of data. They allow us to quickly identify patterns, trends, and outliers within a dataset. As such, it is important for anyone working with data to have a good understanding of how to create and interpret histograms. I highly encourage you to practice creating histograms in Excel Online to improve your data analysis skills and gain a deeper insight into your data.

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