13 Time-Saving Tips for Microsoft PowerPoint

PowerPoint presentations have become an integral part of business communications. However, creating an effective PowerPoint can be time-consuming. Follow these 13 tips to save time while also creating more professional and engaging presentations.

1. Use Slide Master for Consistent Formatting

The Slide Master allows you to set universal styles, layouts, and branding that is applied to all slides. This saves time as you don’t have to format each slide individually. Use it to set fonts, colors, add logos, and edit design themes.

2. Limit Text and Focus on Visuals

Too much text overwhelms audiences. Use concise bullet points, charts, images, and other visuals to communicate key messages. Visuals boost engagement and recall. Follow the 6×6 rule – no more than 6 lines per slide with 6 words per line.

3. Create a Simple yet Consistent Design

A clean, consistent design improves flow and keeps audiences focused. Stick to one “look” in terms of color scheme, backgrounds, fonts, etc. Avoid too many flashy effects as they can be distracting. Simplicity and consistency are key.

4. Use Professional Layout Suggestions

PowerPoint’s Designer feature provides professionally designed layout suggestions based on the content on your slides. It can also create graphics from bulleted lists. This saves time while giving a polished look.

5. Quickly Duplicate Objects

Duplicating objects like charts, images, and text boxes saves reformatting time. To quickly duplicate, hold the Ctrl key while dragging the object. You can also copy (Ctrl + C) and paste (Ctrl + V) objects between slides rather than recreating.

6. Reuse Slides from Other Presentations

Before starting from a blank slate, check your existing presentations or templates for relevant slides you can reuse or repurpose. You can also download pre-designed slides from sites like Slidesgo or SlideModel. This gives you a head start.

7. Add Transitions in Moderation

Transitions can improve flow, but use them sparingly. Stick to 1-2 transition styles max to avoid looking unprofessional. For most slides, simple transitions like “Fade” work well. Reserve flashy transitions for making key points.

8. Use Triggers for Interactions

Triggers allow you to add interactivity to engage your audience. You can set objects like images or shapes to appear on click, giving you more control over the flow. Use sparingly to highlight key information.

9. Automate Animation Timing

By default, animations play only when you click. Automating timing ensures smooth flow without clicks. Under “Advanced Animation”, set effects to start “On Click” of previous rather than needing manual clicks.

10. Learn Keyboard Shortcuts

Mastering shortcuts for formatting, duplicating slides, adding transitions etc. can greatly speed up your workflow. For example, Ctrl + M inserts a new slide and F5 starts the slideshow. Print a shortcuts list to have on hand.

11. Use Presenter View

Presenter View displays notes and next slide preview for smooth presenting without flipping back and forth. It also lets you control slide flow. Hit Ctrl + H to hide cursor while presenting.

12. Save Presentations as Templates

If you create similar presentations regularly, save formatted presentations as templates instead of starting over each time. Replace placeholder images/text rather than reformatting.

13. Outsource Complex Design Work

For professional, visually engaging presentations, consider outsourcing design work instead of spending hours struggling with layout and formatting details. Services like 24Slides offer affordable PowerPoint design services saving you time and frustration.

Following these tips will help you work smarter in PowerPoint. What other time-saving tips do you use? Share in the comments below!