How to Change the Order of the Legend in an Excel Chart

Written by jay darrington
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How to Change the Order of the Legend in an Excel Chart
Legends help explain charts and graphs. (top of the chart image by Steve Johnson from

A chart is nothing more than a graph of different numbers and data without a legend. A legend tells the reader what each section of the graph is. Microsoft Excel automatically generates a legend with each chart you create, so you don't need to worry about figuring it out for yourself. However, if you're not satisfied with the order that Excel puts the legend in, you can change it.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Right-click on one of the names listed on your legend.

  2. 2

    Click on the "Select Data" option from the list that appears.

  3. 3

    Click on the entry you want to move in the "Legend Entries (Series)" box.

  4. 4

    Click the "Up" or "Down" arrows in the box to change the position of the legend. Click "OK" when finished to save your changes.

Tips and warnings

  • For organisation and readability, you may want to leave your legend in a reasonable order, such as chronological or highest to lowest.

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