Waterfall Chart: How to create Waterfall Chart in excel

Waterfall Chart: How to create Waterfall Chart in excel

A waterfall chart is also known as a bridge chart or cascade chart is a special visualization tool that helps in understanding the cumulative impact of a series of positive and negative values. In other words, it is a very good tool to visualize starting value, the positive and negative value, and the final value. So we can say that the Waterfall chart has the first column as starting value, the last column as the Ending value, and all floating columns between them are contributing to positive and negative values. Majorly it is being used for financial data.

How to create Waterfall Chart in excel

To create waterfall chart in excel we need to arrange our data as per below format.

Waterfall Chart: How to create Waterfall Chart in excel
Data arrangement for waterfall chart

After arranging data in the above format we will select data in excel the will go to Insert tab >> Insert Waterfall, Funnel, stock, Surface, or Radar Chart >> Waterfall . It is illustrated in the below image.

Waterfall chart option
Waterfall chart option

After clicking on this icon we will get waterfall chart as below.

Waterfall Chart
Waterfall Chart

But when we see the chart then we found it is not exactly what we wanted. So we need to make a simple modification in the chart’s setting. We will double-click on both the start and end column one by one and will click on Format Data Point. A new floating box will come to the right. Finally, we will check Set as total option.

Waterfall chart to Set as total
Waterfall chart to Set as total

Now the final visual of chart will be what we wanted to achieve.

Final Waterfall Chart
Final Waterfall Chart

When to use the waterfall Chart

  • For Analytical purpose when we need to understand the gradual transition of data over a period of time which incremental or decremental in nature
  • When we wanted to show total loan contracts of a bank which includes new acquisition, finished contract, canceled contract, write off and the carry forward from last period.
  • Tracking the performance of the company especially cash flow.
  • Inventory analysis where we need to show opening inventory, closing inventory, and inflow and outflow during the period.

That’s all for waterfall chart, will meet again with new topic.

Note: If you are using excel version 2013 or before then Waterfall chart will not available in that. Though you can read below tutorials for creating waterfall chart.

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