Dashboard Tooltips

Are you looking for a way to add tooltips to a dashboard? You are in the right place! This tutorial covers some important tips to create an interactive tooltip.

You will learn how to add a switchable contextual help button to your spreadsheet.

Steps to build Dashboard Tooltips

1. Locate the Insert tab and insert a new shape object. Insert a rounded rectangle.

insert a new shape object

2. Because we want to create interactive text boxes, we need to change the style. Select the shape. On the Format Tab, choose Drawing Tools. Add transparent background to the shape and draw a border if you want.

In the example, we’ve just picked a light blue background, a dark grey border, and shadow.

format shape

3. When we add additional information into a shape-based box, we can improve the user interface. OK, how to add the contextual help to shapes? Believe it or not, we have not need to insert a text box. Double-click on the shape! Now enter the description of the tooltip.

add a description to dashboard tooltips

Insert five shapes. Add an explanation and additional information to shapes. Now we have five boxes.

4. Before we merge the objects into one object, find the proper positions. Move the tooltips over the dashboard.

Like this:

interactive dashboard tooltips placement

5. For a technical reason, we have to combine the bubbles. To do this, press and hold the Ctrl button. After that, select all shapes. Finally, right-click and select the Group command from the list.

how to group shapes into one

6. We need to add a name to the group. Select the group. Click on the Name box on the top-left corner. Enter the name of the group, in the example, ‘Tooltips’.

add a name to a shape tooltips

7. Find a button icon and create a switch for dashboard tooltips! To insert an icon, jump to Insert tab > Illustrations Group. Pick a question mark icon and click Insert.

insert a question mark icon

8. Add a named range. Select a cell and enter a name in the NameBox field. In the example, the name is Status.

Macro to Show and Hide Dashboard Tooltips

9. To create switchable buttons for tooltips, write a short VBA code. Insert the macro into a new module. Click Alt+F11 to enter the VBA editor. Create a new standard module. Finally, paste the code below.

Sub ShowHelp()
ActiveSheet.Shapes.Range(Array("ToolTips")).Visible = Not ActiveSheet.Shapes.Range(Array("ToolTips")).Visible
[Status] = ActiveSheet.Shapes.Range(Array("ToolTips")).Visible
End Sub

This tiny code will create a ‘Tooltips’ object.

How the macro works? When you are clicking on the help button, the macro will be shown or hide the dashboard tooltip.

Attach the macro to the button

10. Finally, attach the subroutine help icon. Right-click on the button. Choose the ‘Assign Macro’ option. A new window appears. Select the ‘Tooltips’ macro and click OK.

final step to create dashboard tooltip

Now we a dashboard with interactive tooltips. Download the example!

Additional resources: