How to Create a Timeline Chart in Microsoft PowerPoint

Zarmeen Shahzad
Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint is a useful application whether you are a college student, a professor, an IT expert, a business manager, or a CEO. Creating good presentations is a skill that not many pay attention to. An impactful presentation can completely change the way your colleagues will view you during important meetings. One feature that is very often used in presentations is a Timeline. In this tutorial, I will show you how to create a Timeline Chart in Microsoft PowerPoint.

Create Timeline Chart

There are multiple steps involved in creating a good Timeline, so follow these steps carefully.
[I am using Microsoft Office365. The positioning of the menu items may vary for you depending on your PowerPoint version]

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Step-1: Launch your PowerPoint application.

Step-2: Select your layout from the options shown in the image below. [I clicked on the New slide option for this example]

Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Step-3: Click on the Insert option at the top. Select SmartArt.

Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Step-4: Click on Process in the left pane.

Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Step-5: There are various timeline options available. Click on the one you want and then press OK to confirm your option. [I selected the Basic Timeline and pressed OK]

Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Step-6: Add the Text you wish to add in the text box provided.

Text Box

Step-7: If you wish to enter more text, press Enter when you reach the last bullet point. Pressing Enter at the last bullet point will add another Text bullet.

Text Bullet

There is another way to add more bullets—Right-click on the SmartArt chart. Hover the cursor on Add Shape and select Add Shape After or Add Shape Before. Add Shape After adds a bullet at the end. Add Shape Before will add a bullet at the beginning.

Add Shape

Step-8: Now, if you wish to change the positioning of the date, click on that particular date. Then click on the Move Up or Move Down option at the top of the Window.

Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

There are other things that you can do to customize the Timeline Chart further.

Create Timeline Chart New Layout

  1.  Click on the current Timeline Diagram.
  2.  In the Layouts section in the ribbon at the top of the Window, click on the down arrow or up arrow to see various layouts. Click on any of them to change the entire diagram.

Create Timeline Chart with Colors

  1.  Click on the Timeline Diagram.
  2.  Click on the Change Colors option to expand the option. Select the color scheme you wish to apply.
    Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Chane Timeline Chart Styles

  1.  Click on the Timeline Diagram.
  2.  In the SmartArt Styles section in the ribbon at the top of the window, select various styles ranging from 2-D to 3-D options.
Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint

Download Templates

If the current timeline templates don’t appeal to you, you can download new styles.

    1.  Click on File.
      Create Timeline Chart PowerPoint
    2.  Click on New in the left pane.
      PowerPoint Options
    3.  Type Timeline in the search box and press Enter.
      Timeline Search
    4.  You will get tons of new options. Click on a template you like.
    5.  Press Create.
      Download Timeline Templates
    6.  The template will be downloaded, and you can edit it further according to your needs.

I hope this helps you create a Timeline chart in PowerPoint in the future. Let us know if there is something else you would like us to cover in the comments below.

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