How to Create a Stacked Bar Chart in Google Sheets

How to Create a Stacked Bar Chart in Google Sheets

Data visualisation is an essential aspect of data analysis. It enables you to understand patterns, outliers, and trends in your data. Google Sheets, a widely-used spreadsheet software, offers a variety of ways to visualise your data. One such way is through stacked bar charts.

What is a Stacked Bar Chart?

A stacked bar chart, or a piled bar graph, visualises data by stacking bars on top of each other. The total length of the bar represents the combined result of all data types. It is especially useful when you want to compare total and one part of the total.

For example, if you want to compare the total sales of a store and the sales of each department, a stacked bar chart would be the best fit.

How to Create a Stacked Bar Chart in Google Sheets

Creating a stacked bar chart in Google Sheets is a straightforward process. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Prepare your data: Make sure your data is organised in a way that can be visualised as a stacked bar chart. You should have at least one column for categories and two or more columns for values.

  2. Select your data: Click and drag to highlight the cells containing the data you want to include in your chart.

  3. Insert a chart: Click on the 'Insert' menu at the top of the page, and select 'Chart' from the dropdown.

  4. Choose the chart type: In the chart editor on the right, click on the 'Chart type' dropdown, and select 'Stacked bar chart'.

  5. Customize your chart: Use the 'Customize' tab in the chart editor to adjust the appearance of your chart. You can change the colors, add a title, adjust the legend, and more.

Sample Data and Chart

To illustrate the process, let's consider a simple example. Suppose you have the following sales data for a small store:

  • Department A: 100
  • Department B: 150
  • Department C: 200

The total sales are 450. You can create a stacked bar chart to visualize this data. The total length of the bar will represent the total sales (450), and the lengths of the segments will represent the sales of each department.

After following the steps outlined above, your stacked bar chart in Google Sheets should look like this:

| Departments | Sales | | ------------ | ----- | | Department A | 100 | | Department B | 150 | | Department C | 200 |

And the corresponding stacked bar chart will have three segments, each representing a department's sales as a part of the total sales.


Stacked bar charts are powerful tools for data visualisation. They allow you to compare parts of a whole in a visually appealing and intuitive way. Google Sheets makes it easy to create these charts, even if you have no experience with data visualisation. By following these simple steps, you can start creating your own stacked bar charts in no time.