PowerPoint Linking

How to Link Excel to PowerPoint

Mapping content between Excel and PowerPoint is easy, but does require some manual steps:

In Excel

1. Name Content (cells, ranges/tables, and charts), starting with your prefix

2. “Submit” Content

In PowerPoint

3. Click “Get Excel Source Data” (“Link” tab)

In PowerPoint (for each item/shape)

4. Select Desired Excel source from the drop-downs

5. Copy the provided {code}, including the brackets

6. Create or select the desired shape

Important: the shape type must match (e.g. for a chart: shape must be an existing image; for a table, shape must be an existing table). 

  • Text - Shape must be an existing text-based shape: title, text box, content placeholder, WordArt, drawing shape, etc. It can't be an icon, image, table, etc. Excel source type must be 'Cell'
  • Charts - Create a chart in PPT or paste a chart from Excel (Embed or Link). Excel source type must be 'Table' (a named range or table) *See details below*
  • Images - Shape must be an existing image/picture. For example, copy a chart or range from Excel, then paste it in PPT as a picture (TIFF on a Mac). Don't paste chart as the default chart format. With PPT Online: Insert > any Picture or Online Picture. Excel source type must be 'Chart' (an image)
  • Tables - Shape must be an existing table (Insert > Table). Or you can paste the table from Excel, then style it as desired. Excel source type must be 'Table'

7. Paste {code} in the Shape “Alt Text” “Description” box

Windows: Right-click on shape border > Edit Alt Text   

Mac: Text: Right-click on shape border > Edit Alt Text 

* How to Link Charts in PowerPoint 

Known Issues

PowerPoint updating does work great for most files, on most computers. However, the PowerPoint updating is complex and on rare occasions has some known issues on some computers. Please try it before purchasing a subscription.

Note that updating PowerPoints from templates (Enterprise Feature Edition) do not have any of these issues.

  • Large PowerPoint files on some older computers can cause "out of memory" issues and cannot be updated. The add-in will provide messages indicating if this is the case.
  • Due to incompatibilities on some computers (rare, but more likely on Macs), PowerPoint updates (and listing of linked content) may not be possible. The add-in will provide messages indicating if this is the case when attempting to "List Linked Content" or "Update Document".
  • On some PCs, PowerPoint occasionally partially freezes (the original PPT file) after opening the downloaded/updated PPT file. This is an Office bug, not an issue with the add-in.

We are continually working on fixing these issues. You are welcome to provide feedback regarding issues/errors.