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How to reverse axis order in Excel?

Sometimes, you may need to reverse axis order in a chart. For example, in a bar chart, compared with the data, the axis order is reversed in default, in this case, you may want to reverse the axis order to meet the data order as show as below. Now this tutorial will tell you how to reverse the axis order quickly in Excel.


Reverse axis order in chart

arrow blue right bubble Reverse axis order in chart

There is an option in Format Axis dialog for reversing the axis order.

1. Right click the y axis you want to reverse, and select Format Axis from the context menu. See screenshot:


2. In Format Axis dialog, check Categories in reverse order option in Axis Options section. See screenshot:


Tip: In bar chart, reserve the x axis with righting click the x axis and selecting the Format Axis from context menu, then checking the Values in reverse order in the Format Axis dialog box.

3. Close the dialog, now the y axis order is reversed.


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  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Laurie · 2 years ago
    When you reverse the order of the y axis, how do you keep the x axis labels at the bottom of the chart? And, why do they move to the top of the chart?
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Sandy · 2 years ago
      Click "categories in reverse order" to fix the order problem, then click "value (Y) axis crosses at maximum category" to put the axis at the bottom.

      These two together will make horizontal bar charts work the way any normal human would want... :-)
      • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
        Domel · 10 days ago
        You're the best, thanks!
      • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
        Don · 6 months ago
        Double Thanks Sandy.

        Why on Earth am I formatting the Horizontal Axis in the Vertical Axis Format Properties Microsoft?!?!?!?! I NEVER would have figured this out without Sandy.
      • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
        SK · 1 years ago
        Thanks Sandy
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Laurie · 2 years ago
    This is good; however, I still need the x-axis lables to remain at the bottom fo the chart. When you reverse the order, they move to the top. Who would want the axis labels at the top of the chart????