Excel 2013: Create Progress Bars

   Posted December 26, 2012 by Alex Bahdanovich in Microsoft Excel

Using Excel 2013’s conditional formatting features, you can create progress bars on your spreadsheets. Progress bars are used to graphically represent the advancement of the data. Essentially, you get a chart-like effect within the rows and cells themselves.

Below is an example of the setup that you should have before you start. I will use Cold/Hot as my demonstration. I also stretched the cell to make the progress bar longer. This is done to see a more accurate bar, but this step is not a requirement. As you can see, I put the number 12 in the progress bar cell. This number will be the percentage of the bar that is shaded.

From the Excel ribbon, select Conditional Formatting and then Data Bars. Next, select More Rules.. 

Now, you should see a window which will allow you to create a new formatting rule. For this step, we want to adjust the settings as follows: 

Type: Chose Number, both Minimum and Maximum.

Value: Set the Minimum value to 1 and the Maximum value to 100. 

Finally, chose your color, and click OK.

If you have adjusted all of the previous settings correctly, you should now see a progress bar.

Below are some examples with various values.

 

About Alex Bahdanovich

Writer, author, wordsmith -- this tech enthusiast enjoys Starbucks, good reads, and golden retrievers.
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  • Daniel Kim

    If this conditional format is not available, for instance if you are using an earlier version of Excel, try the REPT() function to repeat a character (like a vertical bar) a certain number of times. A handy cheat.

  • Joel

    I’ve tried having the Minimum and Maximum values refer to other cells… it doesn’t work.
    I was trying to have it refer to changing values to create a form of Character sheet displaying an Levelling up bar where maximum XP requirements keep changing.