ArcGIS Maps for Office

Invigorate your PowerPoint slideshows with ArcGIS Maps for Office

ArcGIS Maps for Office is a free add-on that works with your existing ArcGIS subscription to bring the power of GIS into Microsoft Office. You may have known that ArcGIS Maps for Office lets you geo-enable your spreadsheet data and create maps directly in Excel. But did you know that you can also use Maps for Office to embed maps in your PowerPoint presentations? 

This is a function that helps you easily and elegantly communicate your spatial data to colleagues and stakeholders. Choose from two formats – static or dynamic – and take your slides to the next level.  

Make sure to download and install ArcGIS Maps for Office to follow along with the steps in this article! 


Map slide

Map slides are a great way to enhance your presentations by providing a visual snapshot of spatial data.  

To add a static map image to your PowerPoint slide, open Excel and make sure you are signed in to ArcGIS. Then, open a spreadsheet with a previously added map or add a new map to a spreadsheetAdjust the zoom level of the map to the extent you want to share on your slide. Once you’re happy with how the map looks, click the Create slide button. 

Create slide button in ArcGIS Maps for Office

If you don’t have a PowerPoint presentation open, clicking Create slide will create a new presentation with the map slide. If you want to add a map slide to an existing presentation, make sure you have that presentation open in PowerPoint before you click Create slide. The map slide will be added to the end of that presentation. 

The map slide contains an image of the map as it appears in Excel. You can change the image size and position, and style the slide to your liking. 

PowerPoint slide with an ArcGIS Maps for Office map image

While the map slide provides a helpful image, it doesn’t allow you to pan and zoom the map. The image also doesn’t capture information like the layers or legend. If you want to include these features, try a dynamic map.


Dynamic map

Dynamic maps allow you to engage with your data and provide a fully interactive experience during your presentation.  

To add a dynamic map to a slide, open PowerPoint and make sure you are signed in to ArcGISThen, on the ArcGIS Maps ribbon, click Add Map. The Insert Map wizard appears and guides you through the following workflow: 


Browse maps

Insert Map wizard

Use the drop-down menu at the top of the pane to choose where to browse—for example, in My Content or in ArcGIS Living Atlas—and type keywords into the search box to narrow the results. Click the check mark next to a search result to select and add it. 

Once you have found and added a map, click Next.  


Choose layers and legend keys

Choose layers and legend keys

Refine which layers and legend keys appear in your dynamic map. Use the Show/Hide layer button to control whether a layer appears on the mapYou can add the layer’s symbology as a legend key. You may also want to edit the layer name in the legend to make it more meaningful. 

When you’re happy with your layers and legend, click Next 


Choose layout

Decide how you want your map to appear on the slide. It can be inset, taking up only a portion of the slide, or it can fill the whole slide.  

After choosing your layout, click Next. 


Review and insert map

This final step in the workflow is a preview of what your slide will look like. Adjust the placement of the legend and zoom the map to your preferred extent. Click Insert map to create your dynamic map slide. 

Powerpoint slide with a dynamic map and legend

Now you’re ready to try out your dynamic map!  

When you enter Slide Show mode, the map appears as a static image in the layout that you selected earlier. Click the lock icon at the top of the map to transition to live mode and interact with the mapYou can pan, zoom, view pop-ups, and even view the map in fullscreen. 

Using a dynamic map in PowerPoint

Dynamic maps and map slides can help tell your story by putting data in context of space and placeDownload ArcGIS Maps for Office to enhance your next PowerPoint presentation with location intelligence. 

To learn more about the capabilities of ArcGIS Maps for Office, check out this story.

Banner image by You X Ventures on Unsplash

About the author

Arielle is a documentation writer for Microsoft integration apps at Esri's Research and Development Centre in Ottawa, Canada. Her non-map pastimes include regular trips to the farmers' market and knitting in unexpected places.


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