by Adam Noar
When it comes to PowerPoint, there are many options, tools, and shortcuts that most people are not aware of.
Lucky for you, we have a list of 7 nifty little PowerPoint tricks and hacks that will allow you to create nicer looking slides in record time and make you look like a magician on stage. And who doesn’t like magicians?
Navigate Slides like a Pro
Imagine you’re going through your slide deck, in presenter mode, and accidentally jump to the wrong slide. What should you do in such a situation? Simply use the arrow keys on your keyboard. Hit the right arrow key to go forward and the left arrow key to go backward. It’s that simple.
Also, if you ever want to navigate to a particular slide in your presentation simply type in the slide number on your keyboard, and then press the Enter key.
For example: let’s say we are on slide #1 in our presentation and want to jump to slide #3. Simply press 3 on the keyboard and then press enter (as seen below).
Lastly, a third method to advance forward in your presentation is by clicking the left mouse button using your computer mouse (if you use a mouse of course). This technique can really come in handy when you want to stand up and move around the room when there is no slide clicker in the room (or the clicker isn’t working for some reason). Just hold your mouse in your hand as you walk around and click away on that left button to advance through your deck. No more yelling across the room “next slide” as you go through your presentation.
Open Hyperlinks Seamlessly
Most people think the only way to select a hyperlink in a presentation is by dragging the mouse cursor across the slide during your presentation and selecting the link.
While this method surely works fine, it can add an unnecessary pause in the flow of presentation as you move your mouse across the screen to select the link. As a result, it can sometimes take away your audience’s attention for a few seconds.
You can avoid dragging your mouse across the screen like this by simply hitting the Tab key instead.
It’s certainly not a huge deal but can be slightly distracting … especially if you have several hyperlinks throughout your deck.
To avoid this unnecessary distraction, when you have hyperlinks inserted on your slides and want to open them up, just hit the Tab key (to select the hyperlink) and press enter!
And “abracadabra”! No more moving your mouse across the screen to click on the hyperlink!
Next, let’s talk about how to make hyperlinks look cleaner.
Create Transparent (Invisible) Hyperlinks
Most people think that they can only add a hyperlink to a text box. Not true.
There are times when you may not want any text on the slide at all and want just a full size image on the slide that links to something (like a video or website). So how would we add a hyperlink in this situation?
You can work around this by creating transparent links in PowerPoint which makes your hyperlink invisible:
Creating invisible hyperlinks is an easy way to clean up your slides!
To create your invisible hyperlinks, you first need to enter the text you want to link. Then draw a rectangular shape over that covers the text.
Right-click the rectangle with your mouse and select ‘Insert Hyperlink’ on the toolbar (you can also just hit Ctrl+K on your keyboard). You will then see a dialog box appear where you’ll have to add a hyperlink in the text box and click OK.
Next, right-click the rectangle, select Format option, and choose ‘No Fill’ in the fill color option and ‘No Line’ in the line color box.
Test out the hyperlink in presenter mode to make sure it works.
Compress Images to Reduce File Size
If you have a large PowerPoint file size, you can run into trouble if you are trying to email it to your colleagues. When the file is too large it usually bounces back to you when you hit the send button.
So, what should you do? Compress your PowerPoint file of course!
Usually, it’s the images in a PowerPoint presentation that make the file size extra large. So the first thing you need to do is to compress your images.
Doing that is really simple:
You can significantly reduce the size of your PowerPoint file by compressing images.
1.) Click on any image in your slide deck. This will bring up the Format tab (and options within it)
2.) Click on the button “Compress Pictures”.
3.) Decide whether you want to compress all images or just a single image. Select the resolution size according to your requirement and click OK.
Create “Perfectly Aligned” Copies of an Object
You may already know that you can quickly copy and paste an object on PowerPoint by using Control+D. But what if you want the duplicated object to be perfectly aligned with the original?
PowerPoint magicians like yourself have a clever workaround:
Select the object you want to copy and drag it using your mouse while holding down Ctrl+Shift. This will create a perfectly aligned copy of the object wherever you want it on your slide.
You can also repeat the action, by pressing F4 or Ctrl+Y to add another perfectly aligned copy.
Format Painter Shortcut
If you have been following the Panda blog for a while, you have probably heard us talk about the importance of creating a consistent slide deck.
There are only two easy ways to copy and paste the format in PowerPoint. The first is a Format Painter tool, which is used to apply the same formatting on a single object.
The Format Painter Tool will apply the format of one object to another one time.
The second method involves using shortcut keys CTRL+SHIFT+C to copy the format of the content. Once copied, you can apply that style to other desirable text or object by pressing the keys CTRL+SHIFT+V.
The Format Painter Keyboard Shortcut will apply the format as many times as you want (just keep hitting Ctrl+V).
So what’s the difference between using the Format Painter tool and the above shortcut key method???
As seen in the example above, if you use the shortcut key method, the copied formatting can be carried over as many times as you want without losing it whereas, with Format Painter, you have to click on the tool each time you want to copy the formatting.
Copying the Animation Object
Now that you have created an animation, what can you do to use similar animation in any other slide? Well, that’s quite simple; you can do that by using the Animation Painter tool. It works just like the Format Painter tool (that we discussed in tip #6) except it is copying over animation settings instead of formatting settings.
Select the object you want a copy and then click the Animation Painter tool. Next, click the object where you want to paste that animation. In case you want to create multiple objects, then double-click the brush and repeat the action.
You can also copy animations using shortcut keys ALT+SHIFT+C and paste it by pressing clicking on the object you want to apply the animation.
The Animation Painter Keyboard Shortcut will apply the animation as many times as you want (just keep clicking with your mouse).
A true PowerPoint magician always has a few good tricks up his/her sleeve. The more PowerPoint tricks and hacks you know will make your job of creating and presenting slides so much easier.
Here’s my question for you …
Do you have a presentation trick that makes creating slides or presenting slides appear magical? If so, sound off in the comments below.
Also, do you have a friend that is currently creating a new presentation and could benefit from learning about these PowerPoint tips and tricks? If so, send them a link to this blog post right now. I’m sure they will return the favor to you one day!
Finally, if you enjoyed reading this post, please remember to like and share using the sharing icons to the left.
Hungry for information on how to create and deliver slides like a magician? Here are a few suggested posts: