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How to auto update a chart after entering new data in Excel?

Supposing you have created a chart to track the daily sales based on a range of data in your workbook. But you need to change or edit the number of the data every day, in this case, you have to update the chart manually so it includes the new data. Are there any quick tricks to help you auto update a chart when you add new data to an existing chart range in Excel?

Auto update a chart after entering new data with creating a table

Auto update a chart after entering new data with dynamic formula

arrow blue right bubble Auto update a chart after entering new data with creating a table

If you have the following range of data and column chart, now you want the chart update automatically when you enter new information. In Excel 2007, 2010 or 2013, you can create a table to expand the data range, and the chart will update automatically. Please do as this:


1. Select the data range and click Table under Insert tab, see screenshot:


2. In the Create Table dialog box, if your data has headers, please check My table has headers option, then click OK. See screenshot:


3. And the data range is formatted as a table, see screenshot:


4. Now, when you add values for June, and the chart will be updated automatically. See screenshot:



1. Your new entering data must be adjacent to the above data, it means there is no blank rows or columns between the new data and the existing data.

2. In the table, you are able to insert data between the existing values.

arrow blue right bubble Auto update a chart after entering new data with dynamic formula

But sometimes, you don’t want to change the range to table, and the above method is not available in Excel 2003 or earlier version. Here I can introduce you a complex dynamic formula method. Take the following data and chart for example:


1. First, you need to create a defined name and a dynamic formula for each column. Click Formulas > Define Name.

2. In the New Name dialog box, enter Date into the Name box, and choose current worksheet name from Scope drop down list, and then enter =OFFSET($A$2,0,0,COUNTA($A:$A)-1) formula into the Refers to box, see screenshot:


3. Click OK, and then repeat the above two steps, you can create a dynamic range for each series using the following range names and formulas:

  • Column B: Ruby: =OFFSET($B$2,0,0,COUNTA($B:$B)-1);
  • Column C: James: =OFFSET($C$2,0,0,COUNTA($C:$C)-1);
  • Column D: Freda: =OFFSET($D$2,0,0,COUNTA($D:$D)-1)

Note: In the above formulas, the OFFSET function refers to the first data point, and the COUNTA refers to the entire column of data.

4. After defining the names and formulas for each column data, then right click any column in your chart, and choose Select Data, see screenshot:


5. In the Select Data Source dialog box, from Legend Entries(Series) section, click Ruby and then click the Edit button, in the popped out Edit Series dialog, enter =Sheet3!Ruby under Series values section, see screenshots:


6. And then click OK to return to the Select Data Source dialog, repeat the step 5 to update the remaining series to reflect their dynamic ranges:

  • James: Series values: =Sheet3!James;
  • Freda: Series values: =Sheet3!Freda

7. After setting the left data, now you need to click Edit button under Horizontal (Category) Axis Labels to set this option, see screenshots:


8. Then click OK > OK to close the Select Data Source dialog, after finishing these steps, you'll find that the chart updates automatically when you add new data to the worksheet.



  • 1. You must enter new data in a contiguous manner, if you skip rows, this method will not work as expected.
  • 2. If you enter new column data, this method will not take effect.

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  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Nikhil · 3 months ago
    What if the months were in the columns and you had data series in the rows, how would you do the formula then?
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    poop · 1 years ago
    Doesnt work or not applicable. My chart already refers to the correct data automatically... data is directed to table columns. The problem is the GRAPH wont update.
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Mufaddal · 2 years ago
    This trick doesnt work if you want to add new columns. This trick is for fixed columns. What if there is a data yearwise in columns and every year a new year column is added so how will it get added to the chart ??

    Any idea you can suggest ??


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    MANISH · 2 years ago
    when I type in cell any no. like - 210 it reflect as = 2.10 , no formula is taking place why? any no. shows devide by 100 as I mentioned , decimal comes automatically how to resolve this ?

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    TB · 4 years ago
    It works well! Thank you!
    One question:
    what if my drop down list is not on the same sheet with the "table" where i have datas?
    how can I modify the function?
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Sunny · 4 years ago
      Thanks for the message. But I do not get your question clearly, why don't you upload a screenshot of your problem for me to understand easily? More description, easier to understand. Thank u.
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      chris · 4 years ago
      did you manage to solve this issue? having same issue at the moment
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Kalishwaran A · 4 years ago
    Airtel mobile Bill Payment
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    jasmith4 · 4 years ago
    A chart's ranges can depend on names or not. If a chart range depends on, say A1:E5, and you insert a row at row 3, and a column at column C, the chart will automatically depend on A1:F6. Similarly, if you have a name defined as A1:E5, whether you use it as a chart's range or not, and you insert a column and row at C3, the name's definition will expand to A1:F6. But in either case, if you insert a column and A or E (the endpoints), or a row at 1 or 5, the behavior isn't so well defined: maybe the chart range or name's definition will expand; maybe it won't. To answer Melissa, you'd have to insert rows or columns before or to the left of the chart range.

    I think it's better to use names, because names can be defined using formulas that involve OFFSET, COUNT, INDEX, MATCH, whatever else. So the better answer to Melissa is to define a name for one cell, namely the last of the eight columns or rows, then define the name in term of an OFFSET from that cell: OFFSET(cell,-8,-8,8,8) to go back and up eight cells and use an 8x8 range.
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    Andy · 4 years ago
    Great reminder as I don't do these kind of chart functions that often.
    As an improvement you could mention how to edit defined names in the name manager but I'm not sure if the editing actually enables the function of the adding rows to work completely
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      jasmith4 · 4 years ago
      You can define chart ranges with names or not -- in either case if you physically insert rows or columns in the middle of a range, it automatically expands.

      I think it's best to use names for charts and lots of other things, because you can define names as formulas, not just straight ranges. You must use OFFSET (which resizes too), because that returns a range, but its parameters, which are numbers, can be specified with formulas that use INDEX, MATCH, COUNT, SUM, VLOOKUP, any crazy formula you want. Melissa, that's the best way to handle your situation: give a name to one bookmark cell, then define another name to be offset from that -8 rows or columns, and resize it 8 rows or columns.
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    mnmuhaimin · 5 years ago
    Hi there, thank you so much for this tutorial.
    I am just wondering, how to apply this method to the data that updated in the column not in the row? is there any additional changes that I need to do besides offset formula? thank you.
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Mohammad_Hosein · 5 years ago
    the problem still exists.
    i have main data in one sheet and the linked data (for the chart) in another sheet.
    so when main data changes the chart can't be updated
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    melissa · 5 years ago
    This is GREAT! However, I need my graph to sho the last 8 quarter of data, not just keep adding more quarters. Is there a way to do that?
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    Jennifer M · 6 years ago
    You should probably add the setting piece to updating graphs. By going under file, options, Formulas, automatic update data.

    Thanks, Jenn
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    jasmith4 · 7 years ago
    The table method allows you to add both categories and series dynamically. Is there any way to do that with the formula method without having to define a name for each series?
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    Donald benny · 7 years ago
    Hi All,

    How to update the raw data having 28 tabs in template which also contains 28 tabs by using shortcut methods.

    Please suggest on this.
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    Jenna · 7 years ago
    Thank you! This is great. However I'm having hard time adjust these steps for my situation - I have dates going horizontally (flipped table), so every week I would be adding numbers on the right vs on the bottom. I tried adjusting the formula so that instead of COUNTA($A:$A) or COUNTA($B:$B) that stipulated the column, I have COUNTA($1:$1) or COUNTRA($2:$2) but that didn't work. Any advice?
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    Paula · 7 years ago
    what about adding additional data to the table so that it updates the charts? I am having a very difficult time with this. The charts are not holding the full column data ranges but revert to specific cell locations so new data does not automatically appear.
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    Paulm · 7 years ago
    Thanks for this. You've speeded up my monthly reporting and generation of all those "absolutely necessary" KPI's