How to Add Axis Titles in Excel Chart

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When working with charts in Excel, it’s essential to include axis titles as they provide crucial information about the data displayed on the chart. Axis titles help users understand the nature and range of the data represented on each axis.

When creating a chart in Excel, you may notice that it automatically adds a chart title, but not axis titles. However, adding axis titles can significantly improve the clarity and understanding of your chart. In this article, we will guide you through the process of adding axis titles in Excel, whether you are using Excel 2019, Excel 2016, or Excel Online.

How to Add Axis Titles in Excel 2019

To add axis titles in Excel 2019, follow these steps:

  • Select your chart and go to the “Chart Design” tab.
  • Click the “Add Chart Element” dropdown arrow and hover over “Axis Titles.”
  • Select “Main Horizontal,” “Main Vertical,” or both from the pop-up menu, depending on your requirements.



  • If you are using Windows, click the “Chart Element” icon located to the right of the chart.
  • Check the box for “Axis title.”
  • Click the arrow to the right and select the options for vertical, horizontal, or both titles.


  • Once you’ve selected the desired axis, the default title “Axis Title” will appear on the chart. 
  • To change the title, select the text box containing the default title and replace it with your preferred title.


How to Add Axis Titles in Excel 2016

Adding axis titles in Excel 2016 is a straightforward process. Here’s how you can do it:

  • Select the chart you want to add the axis title to.
  • Right-click on the chart and a floating toolbar will appear.


  • Choose the “Chart Elements” option and select “Axis Title” from the list.
  • This will allow you to add titles to all axes on the chart.

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  • Right-click on the axis title and choose “Axis Title” from the dropdown menu.
  • Select “Major Horizontal” or “Major Vertical” to label a single axis.
  • Click on the axis title and type in the specific title according to your needs.
  • If you want to link the axis title to an existing cell, select the axis title, click on the formula bar, type an equal sign, and click on the cell you want to link. 
  • Press the Enter key to complete the process.

How to Customize Axis Titles in an Excel Chart

Once you have added the axis titles in Excel, you can customize them further to suit your preferences. Follow these steps:

  • Right-click on an axis title to display the floating toolbar.
  • The toolbar provides options for “Fill,” “Stroke,” and “Style.”
  • Use the dropdown arrows next to each option to apply a theme, choose a style, gradient, or texture, or adjust the border color.

For more advanced customization:

  • Right-click on an axis title to open the “Format Axis Title” sidebar.
  • Use the tabs under “Fill & Line,” “Effect & Size,” and “Properties” to make corresponding adjustments.
  • Modify the border, padding, or alignment, or add a shadow according to your preferences.

To customize the font of the axis titles in Excel Online:

  • Select the “Text Option” at the top of the sidebar.
  • Use the “Text Fill and Outline,” “Text Box,” and “Text Effects” tabs to change the font color, direction, and other formatting options.

With these customization options, you can add labels and axis titles to your Excel charts and enhance their visual appeal.


In conclusion, adding axis titles in Excel charts is a simple yet crucial step in enhancing the visual clarity and overall effectiveness of your data presentations. By providing clear and concise labels for the X and Y axes, you enable your audience to better understand the context and meaning of the data being presented. 

Whether you are creating charts for a professional presentation, an academic report, or simply for personal use, incorporating axis titles is an essential practice that should not be overlooked. Excel offers a user-friendly interface and a wide range of customization options, allowing you to tailor your axis titles to suit the specific needs of your chart.

From adjusting the font size and style to changing the orientation and position of the titles, Excel provides ample flexibility to ensure that your charts convey the desired message accurately and effectively. By taking the time to add axis titles to your Excel charts, you demonstrate a commitment to clear communication and data transparency, elevating the quality and impact of your data visualizations. 

So, the next time you create a chart in Excel, remember to include axis titles to enhance the overall clarity and comprehension of your data. Your audience will appreciate the additional context, and your charts will become more powerful tools for data analysis and presentation.

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