How To Add Legend In Excel

Adding a legend in Excel can be a game-changer when it comes to creating clear and visually appealing charts. Whether it’s a simple bar graph or a complex scatter plot, a well-designed legend can make all the difference in helping your audience understand the data at a glance. In this article, I’ll guide you through the process of adding a legend in Excel and share some personal tips and tricks to make your charts stand out.

Locating the Chart Legend Option

To add a legend to your chart in Excel, start by selecting the chart. Once the chart is selected, navigate to the “Chart Design” tab in the Excel ribbon. Look for the “Add Chart Element” option, and within it, you’ll find the “Legend” checkbox. Click on it to add the default legend to your chart.

Customizing the Legend

Now that the legend has been added, it’s time to make it your own. Right-click on the legend to reveal a list of customization options. You can change the font, font size, and font color to match your personal style or your company’s branding. You can also reposition the legend by dragging it to the desired location within the chart.

Adding a Title to the Legend

If you want to provide further context to your legend, consider adding a title. This can be especially helpful for charts with multiple data series. To do this, click on the legend to select it and then click once more to focus on the legend title. From there, you can type in the title that best describes the data series in your chart.

Using Descriptive Labels

Another personal touch I like to add to my legends is using descriptive labels. Instead of generic labels like “Series 1” or “Series 2”, I recommend labeling your data series in a way that directly relates to the information being presented. To achieve this, click on the data series in your chart and rename them by typing in the desired label directly within the formula bar.


Adding a legend to your Excel chart not only enhances its visual appeal, but also improves its communicative power. With customizable options and personal touches, you can make your charts more engaging and easier to understand. So, next time you create a chart in Excel, don’t forget to give some attention to its legend!