How to Add a Trendline in Excel?

Mastering Trendlines in Excel: A Comprehensive Guide

In today’s data-driven world, Microsoft Excel stands out as a powerful tool for analyzing and visualizing information. One of its prominent features is the ability to add a trendline. An Excel trendline is a compelling visualization that highlights the general trajectory or pattern in a dataset. Often referred to as a “line of best fit,” a trendline provides a graphical representation of the behavior of a set of data, enabling users to identify underlying patterns quickly. This makes it an invaluable tool for a diverse range of professionals, from investors and traders to sales representatives. Whether you’re trying to identify averages, discern peaks and troughs, or even forecast future data points, trendlines are a go-to feature. Microsoft’s newer versions of Excel have simplified the process of inserting trendlines, ensuring that even novice users can harness this functionality with ease. However, it’s essential to note that not all chart types in Excel support trendlines, with pie, radar, 3-D, stacked charts, among others, being exceptions. Excel offers a variety of trendlines to cater to different data patterns: Linear trendlines, which present a straight line for simple linear datasets; Logarithmic trendlines, ideal for data that levels out after rapid changes; Polynomial trendlines for capturing data fluctuations; Power trendlines for datasets that show values increasing at a particular rate; Exponential trendlines for data exhibiting escalating rates of rise or fall; and Moving Average trendlines that facilitate forecasting. This article on risewindows will delve deeper into these trendline types and provide a comprehensive guide on adding them to your Excel charts.

How to Add a Trendline in Microsoft Excel?

In Microsoft Excel, there are several methods available for adding a trendline. Here are those that are easy to use.

Using Chart Design Group

To add a Trendline in Excel using the Chart Design group, follow these steps:-

Step 1. Firstly, open an existing Excel Worksheet or create a new one.

Step 2. Now, click on the Chart if you want to add a Trendline.

If you have not created any charts yet, fill in the data in the cells you want to convert into charts, select them and then click the Insert button. Choose a chart from the Charts group you want to insert into your Excel Worksheet.

Step 3. Then, once you have a chart in Excel, click on it to select it. Click on the Chart Design tab in the menu bar to change the ribbon.

Step 4. After that, click the Add Chart Element button under the Charts Layout group.

Step 5. Then, select the Trendline option in the drop-down menu and choose an alternative, such as Linear, to add to your graph.

The Linear Trendline will add a straight line to the chart that shows the increase or decrease over the period.

So, if you want to change the type of trendline, select the chart and click on the Chart Design tab. Now, click the Add Chart Element button under the Charts Layout group and choose the Trendline option in the drop-down menu. Lastly, select a Trendline you want to add to your graph.

Through Right-click Menu

To add a Trendline on an Excel chart by right-clicking menu, perform these steps:-

Step 1. Firstly, open your existing Excel Worksheet.

Step 2. Then, right-click on any candle in the chart and select the Add Trendline option in the menu.

Step 3. Once you’re done, the Format Trendline window will appear on the right. Here, you’ll notice Linear option is selected automatically. However, you also choose another option if required.

How to Format Trendline in Excel?

Once you have a chart in Excel with Trendline and you want to format it, follow these steps:-

Here, click on the chart, and some icons will appear on the right of it. These include chart elements, chart styles, and chart filters.

Chart Elements: This lets you show or hide Axes, Axis Titles, Chart titles, Data Labels, Data tables, Error Bars, Gridlines, Legend, and trendlines. Using this option, you can even change the trendline type.

Chart Styles: This allows you to change the style of the chart as well as the color.

Chart Filters: This lets you filter categories in the chart.


In an era dominated by data, Microsoft Excel remains a pivotal tool for analyzing and interpreting vast amounts of information. Its capability to add trendlines magnifies the essence of data visualization, enabling a swift grasp of patterns and trajectories in a given dataset. Commonly recognized as the “line of best fit,” trendlines offer a pictorial depiction of data behaviors, streamlining the process of pinpointing underlying patterns. This is especially beneficial for a myriad of professionals spanning investors, traders, and salespersons. The task of identifying averages, discerning peaks and troughs, or even projecting future data points becomes notably uncomplicated with the aid of trendlines. With Microsoft’s relentless innovations in newer Excel versions, the act of embedding trendlines has become markedly user-friendly, catering even to those at the beginner level. Nonetheless, it’s vital to be cognizant of the fact that specific chart formats in Excel, such as pie, radar, and 3-D charts, don’t accommodate trendlines. In its quest to cater to varied data patterns, Excel offers a gamut of trendlines ranging from Linear, reflecting straightforward linear datasets, to Logarithmic, apt for rapidly changing data. There are also Polynomial trendlines showcasing data ebbs and flows, Power trendlines for data scaling at a defined rate, Exponential trendlines for swiftly escalating or plummeting data and Moving Average trendlines tailored for forecasting. In this risewindows piece, the intricacies of these trendlines have been unraveled, coupled with an exhaustive guide on their integration into Excel charts.


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