How to Make a Bar Graph in Excel
Use a Bar Chart to Compare Categories of Data
Bar Graphs and Column Charts are often used to describe the same type of chart with vertical bars. However, in Microsoft Excel, a bar graph has horizontal bars whereas a Column Chart has vertical bars. No matter, what you call them, Bar graphs and Column charts are used to compare different categories of data.
Bar Graphs 101
To create a bar graph in Excel, select your data, then click on the Insert tab and then Bar. There are various choices of bar shapes (2-D, 3-D, Cylinder, etc) and formats (clustered, stacked or 100% stacked.)
100 % Stacked
Alternatives and "Advanced" Bar Graphs
If you are tracking data over time, then use a line graph instead of a bar graph. Consider using a histogram to show the distribution of measured data or a Pareto Chart to show the importance of the bars,
It's time consuming and difficult to create Histograms and Pareto charts in Excel. However, its a snap if you have QI Macros add-in for Excel. Learn more and download a 30 day trial to see for yourself.