How to Make a Scatter Plot in Google Sheets: A Step-by-Step Guide

Making a scatter plot in Google Sheets is a straightforward process. First, you’ll need to have your data ready in two columns, one for each variable. Then, you’ll select the data and choose the scatter plot option from the chart menu. Afterward, you can customize your scatter plot by adjusting the axes, adding titles, and changing the appearance of the data points. Now, let’s dive into the step-by-step tutorial to clarify each part of the process.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Make a Scatter Plot in Google Sheets

Before we start clicking and dragging, let’s understand what we’re going to do. A scatter plot is a type of graph that shows the relationship between two different variables. We’re going to use Google Sheets to put our data into visual form, so we can spot any trends or outliers at a glance.

Step 1: Enter your data

Enter your data into two columns in Google Sheets.

Once you have your data, you’ll want to make sure it’s organized. Typically, one column will represent the independent variable (the cause), and the other will represent the dependent variable (the effect). Make sure there are no empty cells in your data range, as this could affect the accuracy of your scatter plot.

Step 2: Highlight your data

Click and drag to highlight the cells that contain your data.

Be careful not to include any headers or labels in your selection, as this may cause issues when Google Sheets tries to create the scatter plot. You want only the numbers to be highlighted.

Step 3: Insert a chart

Click on the “Insert” menu and select “Chart.”

Google Sheets will automatically suggest a chart type based on your data. However, we’re specifically looking to create a scatter plot, so we might need to change the default option.

Step 4: Choose scatter plot

In the Chart Editor, click on the “Chart type” dropdown and select “Scatter chart.”

You’ll find the scatter chart option under the “Scatter” category. If you went with the suggested chart and it’s not a scatter plot, don’t worry, it’s easy to switch.

Step 5: Customize your scatter plot

Use the Chart Editor to adjust your scatter plot’s appearance.

You can add chart and axis titles, change the color and style of your data points, and even add trendlines. Take your time to explore the customization options to make your scatter plot communicate your data effectively.

After completing these steps, you’ll have a fully-functional scatter plot that visually represents the relationship between your two variables. It’s a powerful way to understand your data better and to communicate your findings to others.

Tips for Making a Scatter Plot in Google Sheets

  • Make sure your data is clean and organized before starting. This will save you time and ensure your scatter plot is accurate.
  • Use labels for your columns to remember what each variable represents. It will make it easier to customize your chart later.
  • If you have a lot of data points, consider adding a trendline to see the overall direction of the relationship between variables more clearly.
  • Double-check the axes to make sure they’re representing the correct variables. Sometimes Google Sheets may swap them.
  • Save your scatter plot as an image if you need to insert it into a report or presentation. You can do this by clicking on the three dots in the upper-right corner of the chart and selecting “Save image.”

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a scatter plot?

A scatter plot is a graph that uses dots to represent values obtained for two different variables. It helps in identifying the type of relationship, if any, between the two variables.

Why use Google Sheets for scatter plots?

Google Sheets is a free, accessible, and user-friendly tool that allows you to create and customize scatter plots easily. Plus, it facilitates collaboration and sharing of your work.

Can I add a trendline in Google Sheets?

Yes, Google Sheets allows you to add a trendline to your scatter plot. You can find this option in the customization settings in the Chart Editor.

How do I label the axes on my scatter plot?

In the Chart Editor, under the “Customize” tab, you can add titles to your axes. This is an important step for clarity and understanding of the graph.

Can I change the color of the data points?

Absolutely. In the same “Customize” tab, you’ll find options for changing the color, size, and shape of your data points. It’s a great way to make certain points stand out or to differentiate between data sets.


  1. Enter your data into two columns.
  2. Highlight your data.
  3. Insert a chart.
  4. Choose scatter plot.
  5. Customize your scatter plot.


Creating a scatter plot in Google Sheets is a breeze once you get the hang of it. With the ability to easily enter data, customize the chart to your liking, and even add advanced features like trendlines, Google Sheets provides a robust platform for data analysis and visualization. Whether you’re a student looking to present your science fair results, a marketer analyzing consumer behavior, or a researcher making sense of complex data sets, mastering the scatter plot is a valuable skill. So, go ahead, give it a try, and watch your data come alive. Who knows what insights you might uncover?

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