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Add or edit a trendline or annotation

You can add trendlines or annotations to charts in Google Sheets. After you add a trendline or annotation, you can edit it to change the type or appearance.

Add or edit a trendline

Trendlines can help you see patterns in your data. Trendlines work when the horizontal (X) axis has numbers.

You can add trendlines to:

  • Scatter plots
  • Line charts
  • Column charts
  • Bar charts

Note: If you don’t see the trendline option, it means trendlines don’t work with your data.

Add a trendline to a chart
  1. Open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. Select a chart. In the top right corner, click the Down arrow.
  3. Click Advanced edit.
  4. Click Customization and scroll to the “Trendline” section at the bottom.
  5. To choose a trendline type, click the menu next to “Trendline.”
    • Linear: For data that closely follows a straight line. For example, y = mx+b.
    • Exponential: For data that rises and falls proportional to its current value. For example, y = mx+b.
    • Polynomial: For data that is unstable. For example, ax^n + bx^(n-1) + ... + zx^0.
  6. You can edit these features:
    • Color
    • Opacity
    • Line thickness
    • Label options
    • R-squared visibility to show how closely the trendline fits the data. The closer to R^2 = 1 (or -1), the closer the fit.
    • Degree (polynomials only)
  7. Click Update.
Edit a trendline
  1. Open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. On a chart, click the trendline.
  3. Click the icons to edit each of the features:
    • Trendline type Trendline type - linear, exponential, or none
    • Color Color
    • Opacity opacity
    • Line thickness line thickness
    • R-squared visibility r-squared visibility - This shows how closely the trendline fits the data. The closer to R^2 = 1 (or -1), the more perfect the fit.

Annotate a chart

Annotations are text notes that you can attach to charts. You can use them to take note of trends or observations.

Note: You can add annotations to line charts and area charts.

Annotate a chart

Add notes to a data point

  1. Open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. In the column to the right of each data point, add your notes.
  3. Your notes will display on your chart.

Example:

  • Column A: Labels for horizontal (X) axis
  • Column B: Data points for vertical (Y) axis
  • Column C: Notes

Add notes to the horizontal axis

  1. Open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. To the right of the column with your X-axis data, add your notes.
  3. Your notes will display on your chart.

Example:

  • Column A: Labels for horizontal (X) axis
  • Column B: Notes
  • Column C: Data points for each label

Customize your notes

  1. Open a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
  2. To change the font size, color, or style of your notes, scroll to the last section of the "Customization" tab, and click "Annotations."

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