Excel: How to Make Bars Wider in a Bar Chart


Often you may want to make the bars wider in a bar chart in Excel:

Fortunately this is easy to do by adjusting the value of the Gap Width within the Format Data Series panel in Excel.

The following step-by-step example shows how to use this feature to make the bars wider in a bar chart in practice.

Step 1: Enter the Data

First, let’s create the following dataset that shows the total sales made by various employees at some company:

Step 2: Insert the Bar Chart

Next, highlight the cell range A1:B10.

Then click the Insert tab along the top ribbon, then click the icon called Clustered Column  within the Charts group:

The following bar chart will automatically be created:

Step 3: Make Bars Wider in Bar Chart

Next, we will make the bars wider.

To do so, right click on any of the bars in the chart, then click Format Data Series from the dropdown menu:

In the Format Data Series panel that appears on the right side of the screen, we will see that the Gap Width is currently set to 219%.

We can decrease this value to make the bars in the chart wider.

For example, we’ll decrease the value to 50%:

This causes the bars in the chart to become wider:

The lower the value for the Gap Width, the wider the bars will be in the chart.

Feel free to adjust this value to make the bars as wide as you’d like.

Note: Setting the Gap Width value to 0% would make the bars as wide as possible and the bars would touch each other.

Additional Resources

The following tutorials explain how to perform other common operations in Excel:

Excel: How to Sort Bars in Bart Chart
Excel: How to Create a Clustered Stacked Bar Chart
Excel: How to Add Total Values to Stacked Bar Chart

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