How to Change Legend Text in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide

Changing legend text in Excel is a quick and simple task. Whether you want to rename a series for clarity or update information, it only takes a few clicks. By following the steps below, you’ll have your chart looking exactly how you want it in no time.

Step by Step Tutorial: Changing Legend Text in Excel

Before we dive into the steps, it’s important to understand that changing legend text will help you tailor your chart to better fit the data presentation. Let’s get started.

Step 1: Select the Chart

Click on the chart that contains the legend text you want to change.

When you select the chart, you’ll notice that the chart tools become available on the Excel ribbon. This is where you’ll find all the options to customize your chart.

Step 2: Open the Select Data Source Dialog Box

Right-click on the legend and choose ‘Select Data…’ from the context menu.

The Select Data Source dialog box is where you can modify the chart’s data range and switch row/column data. It’s also where you can change the legend entry text.

Step 3: Edit the Legend Entries

In the Select Data Source dialog box, click on the legend entry you want to change, then click the ‘Edit’ button.

A small Edit Series window will pop up where you can type the new text for your legend entry. This is also where you can change the series name that appears in the legend.

Step 4: Enter New Text

In the Series name box, type the new text for your legend.

Make sure to keep your new text short and descriptive. It should accurately represent the data series it’s associated with.

Step 5: Close the Dialog Boxes

Click OK on the Edit Series window, then click OK again on the Select Data Source dialog box to apply the changes.

Your chart will now display the updated legend text. You can repeat these steps for each legend entry you want to change.

After completing these steps, your chart will reflect the new legend text, making your data easier to interpret and understand. It’s a small change that can make a big difference in the presentation of your data.

Tips for Changing Legend Text in Excel

  • Always save your work before making changes to your charts.
  • Keep legend text concise to maintain clarity and readability.
  • Double-check for typos or errors in your new legend text.
  • Remember that changing the legend text does not alter the data in the chart.
  • Use consistent naming conventions across all legend entries for uniformity.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I change the font size or style of the legend text?

Right-click on the legend text, select ‘Font’ from the context menu, and choose your desired font settings.

Can I move the position of the legend within the chart?

Yes, you can drag the legend to a new position or right-click on the legend, select ‘Format Legend,’ and choose a new position from the options provided.

Is it possible to change the color of the legend text?

Yes, right-click on the legend text, select ‘Font,’ and choose a new color from the ‘Color’ dropdown menu.

What if I can’t find the ‘Select Data’ option?

Ensure you have clicked on the chart itself and not an individual element within the chart.

Can I undo the changes I made to the legend text?

Yes, simply press ‘Ctrl + Z’ to undo your most recent changes, or use the ‘Undo’ button in Excel.


  1. Select the Chart
  2. Open the Select Data Source Dialog Box
  3. Edit the Legend Entries
  4. Enter New Text
  5. Close the Dialog Boxes


Changing legend text in Excel is a straightforward process that enhances the readability and customization of your charts. It’s one of those neat little tricks that can make a world of difference when you’re trying to present data in a clear and professional manner. Whether you’re a student, business professional, or just someone who loves to organize data visually, mastering this skill will save you time and improve your presentations. Remember to keep the text relevant, accurate, and to the point. After all, the legend is a guide for your audience to understand the data at a glance. So go ahead and give it a try – your Excel charts are about to get a whole lot clearer!

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