Create amazing charts in Numbers

Customise and control your charts and graphs with Numbers’ advanced controls


Spreadsheets are boring. They’re used the world over by business people who need to show information in a professional way, which usually results in dull tables, drab charts and numbers that all blend into one.

But it doesn’t have to be like that, and with Numbers it’s incredibly easy to make your work bright, interesting and eye-catching. In particular, you can add a huge dollop of creativity to your charts, ensuring that all of your data will jump right off the page. With customisations like colours, textures and 3D effects, Numbers offers the most powerful tools possible to make your spreadsheets more than just boring business work. Here, we’ll show you how to customise your charts and take them beyond basic numbers to make them truly spectacular.

Step 1

1 Create your chart

First off, create a table in your document containing the information you want to show, then select your desired data and click the Chart button in the top toolbar.

Step 2

2 Pick a chart

You’ll see that there are three options – 2D,
3D and Interactive. Each one has a series of style options to choose from, so for now pick a standard 2D chart design.

Step 3

3 Choose wisely

Consider the type of chart you need for the data you want to display. If you need to change the type of chart you’re using, open the Chart sidebar and use the Chart Type menu.

Step 4

4 Change your style

Each chart has its own selection of styles at the top of the Chart sidebar. You can pick one of the alternative styles from here, or edit things manually and save it as a new style.

Step 5

5 Font and colour

You can change the colours of your chart quickly using the preset combinations in Chart Colours section, and alter the font used in your chart to make it even more eye-catching.

Step 6

6 Change Chart Options

Depending on the kind of chart you’re working on, and the document it’s in, you may want to show or hide different information – use the checkboxes in Chart Options to do this.

Step 7

7 Mind the gap

For bar graphs, you’ll also have the option to customise the gaps – it might seem picky, but these small changes can make your finished spreadsheets look really professional.

Step 8

8 Going 3D

At the bottom of the Charts sidebar you can adjust the type of chart you’re using. You can change the whole chart type, or just make a change like moving to a 3D design.

Step 9

9 Backgrounds and borders

Edit the border design and add a background to your chart if you want it to jump right off the page. You can add all kinds of backgrounds, so experiment with the options.