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15 Simple PowerPoint PPT Animation Tips, Effects, & Tricks for 2023 (+Video)

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When you start working with animations in PowerPoint, it's easy to go too far. You can quickly over animate your slides. This can make your presentations distracting and disruptive to your audience. 

Intro 15 PowerPoint Animation tipsIntro 15 PowerPoint Animation tipsIntro 15 PowerPoint Animation tips
Let's learn PPT animation and see examples of PowerPoint animation. (Illustration source: Envato Elements.)

When used properly, PowerPoint animations are a great tool. The trick is to use them with care. When you do, you can add PowerPoint animation effects that help your slides look their very best.

That's why we'll share our top PowerPoint animation tips and tricks. You'll learn to control your transitions and enhance your presentation with powerful effects. We'll explore many approaches to help you succeed. 

Need Help? Download Our eBook on Making Great Presentations (Free)

We also have a useful complement to this tutorial. Quickly grab it before you read on. Download our FREE eBook: The Complete Guide to Making Great Presentations, which will help you write, design, and deliver the perfect presentation. 

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Watch and Learn: Animation in PowerPoint for Beginners in 2023 (Video)

Do you want to add the best PowerPoint animations to your next presentation? Watch this quick screencast for some powerful PPT animation tips, effects, and tricks.

Why Use PowerPoint Animations?

First, let's understand why we would use animations in a PowerPoint presentation. There are two common reasons: 

  1. Animations help you control the pace of the delivery of your presentation.
  2. They can enhance the appearance and interest of your slides.

In other words, think of PowerPoint slide animation as a way to control your slides. They help you keep things moving at the pace of your choice. And they make your slides more interesting. 

PowerPoint animations control what your audience sees - and when they see it. 

Now, before you can actually use animations, it helps to have a solid presentation ready to work from. To help you with that, there are many quality presentation templates made to save you time, such as this curated selection of easy-to-use designs: 

Getting Started With PowerPoint Animations

Let's introduce the different types of animations in PowerPoint. In essence, there are two key kinds of animation PowerPoint effects:

  1. Transitions
  2. Animations

Transitions are a type of PPT animation between slides. You can view the Transitions menu to view all possible transition effects you can use. These are ideal when you want to have a noticeable shift between two slides.

PowerPoint animationsPowerPoint animationsPowerPoint animations
Transition options in PowerPoint.

Animations are PPT animations on your slide. You can view your options in the Animations pane. These are often used as action effects while you're presenting your slide. For example, an animation can be used to highlight a particular element on your slide.

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Animation in PowerPoint effects and options.

Discover how and when to add animation to PowerPoint. Without further ado, let's dive into these helpful PowerPoint animation tips and tricks. 

Karbon PowerPoint animationsKarbon PowerPoint animationsKarbon PowerPoint animations
Download the Karbon — PowerPoint Presentation Template from Envato Elements today.

For our tutorial, we’ll work with a premium Envato Elements template. It’s the Karbon — PowerPoint Presentation Template, and you can download it here. Inside, you’ll enjoy dozens of sleek modern slide layouts.

The tips in this section were written using Windows 11 and Office365. If you’ve got a different operating system or a different version of PowerPoint, your steps may be slightly different.

15 Easy PowerPoint PPT Animation Tips, Effects, & Tricks for Beginners in 2023

Let's cover 15 of the best animation in PowerPoint templates. These PowerPoint slide animation techniques are a shortcut to mastery.

Before we dive in, it helps to know: PowerPoint animations are controlled with the Animation Pane. To learn more about the Animation Pane, check out the following tutorial:

1. Animation 101: Master Your Context

The key lesson in effective animations is to understand when to use animation. An easy-to-remember guideline is the 80/20-rule. What 20% of your content in your presentation is the most important? That's the content that might be worthwhile for you to add animation to.

For example, announcing a new product line may be the most exciting part of your presentation. In this context, it makes sense to highlight this by adding a Build In animation for example.

PowerPoint helps you by labeling their animations in different strength categories. These include subtle, moderate, and exciting.

Animation in PowerPointAnimation in PowerPointAnimation in PowerPoint
Subtle, moderate or exciting animations offer a different punch in your PowerPoint presentation.

These animation strengths can help you use the right animation in the right context. For example, highlight your key content like noting an increase in operating margins.

In summary: Define what is your most important content in the presentation. When you choose an animation, make sure its strength matches the importance of each key point.

2. Animation 101: Control Your Timing and Duration

Once you've mastered where to add animation, next up is to understand when to animate. 

As described in the beginning of the tutorial, you can use transitions and animations. I'd recommend that you only choose one of either per slide that you'd like to add some animation to. Combining both often becomes a visual overload for your audience.

Here again, the context of the slide matters. If you'd like to surprise the audience with the whole slide, a transition could be ideal. If you'd only like to have a few elements appear at a time, using animations makes more sense.

Animations in PowerPointAnimations in PowerPointAnimations in PowerPoint
In the Animation Pane, when you select an animation you can change the duration.

The duration of your animation matters as well and has a big impact on how your animation is experienced.

Have you watched a presentation with slow transitions between each slide? At first, these impressive visual effects might be interesting. But eventually, they become a source of frustration as you see them over and over. It's tedious.

The general rule is to have faster animations. I typically choose a timing of 0.5 seconds. That's slow enough to be noticeable, but fast enough to keep things moving.

3. Animation 101: The Basics Work

Even when working to make your animations subtle and effective, it can still be easy to overdo it. This is because PowerPoint has many types of animations. The choice can feel overwhelming.

There's a simple rule that helps make your presentation feel less heavy. Here it is: use the same animations throughout your presentation. 

It's tempting to add many different transitional animations for the sake of variety. But in fact, the variety can distract from what you're trying to communicate. It diminishes your message. 

Below are the types of animations which I use the most:

  • Appear. To simply make an object appear in your presentation.
  • Fade. Probably my most used animation that feels a little slicker than Appear.
  • Zoom. A good way to quickly add emphasis on an element in your slide.
Animations for PowerPointAnimations for PowerPointAnimations for PowerPoint
Fade is a commonly used type of PowerPoint animation which always works well.

Now that you've seen the basic concepts of animation, let's dive into a few real-world examples of PowerPoint animations. We'll explore how animations can enhance your presentation. 

4. Reorder Animations to Change Object Sequencing

As you work, you'll likely find yourself adding many animations in PowerPoint effects. And chances are, you may want to change up their order after you're done. Easy! The Animation Pane lets you manage and reorder animations. After adding animations to your slide, click on the Animations tab. Then, select the Animation Pane.

In the Animation Pane, you can view all the animations on your slide in a clear, concise list format. To reorder the animations, simply click and drag them up or down the list to your new desired location. In moments, PowerPoint transforms your animation sequence.

Reorder animation PowerPointReorder animation PowerPointReorder animation PowerPoint
Use the Animation Pane to re-sequence and change the order of your animations.

This is very useful when you're trying to adjust the timing of your animations. You can also use it to create more complex animation sequences.

What the pane really does is give you full control over your animation performance. You can mix up the pace and flow of each slide, just by changing where a given slide animation effect is placed.

5. Enhance Your Message With Simple Animations

Animations in PowerPoint help you call attention to changes and items of note on your slide. Consider the example of PowerPoint animations below. Notice how the result in Q3 was much higher. Imagine that a year ago, that quarter was actually the worst quarter.

This is something you could mention verbally while giving the presentation. In this case, you would highlight the result of Q3's improvement in a single year.

PowerPoint slide animationPowerPoint slide animationPowerPoint slide animation
A simple slide example, displaying the year's sales results.

This is an example of an interesting bit of information that can be emphasized with animation. Here's the plan:

Step 1. Add an Underline

In PowerPoint, you can do this by selecting "Q3: 6% increase" and adding the following emphasis effect: Underline. Underline is a simple yet subtle way to add emphasis to text.

Step 2. Reset the Timing

Open the Animation Pane. Select the animation you've just added. In the Timing options, make sure that it starts On Click. This way, you can run over the facts and figures while presenting your slide and then have the animation be displayed on the moment you want it. For example:

  1. First, run over the results of 2023, quarter by quarter.
  2. Then click and start the underlining of Q3.
  3. Finally, you tell the story how Q3 used to be a losing quarter instead of your strongest quarter to date.

Now you understand how pacing animations can be a much better delivery. Animation is PowerPoint is superior versus just dumping all content at once.

PowerPoint animation effectsPowerPoint animation effectsPowerPoint animation effects
The Underline animation effect helps call attention to key text.

6. Use Transitions Between Your Sections

A PowerPoint presentation, like a story, has a beginning, middle, and ending. To mark those points during your presentation, you could use an animation in the form of a Transition.

As an example of PowerPoint animation scenarios, you'd like to jump to your conclusion slide. To grab everyone's attention again, we'll use a transition animation to pack a bit more punch.

On the Transitions menu in PowerPoint, there are many cool options to choose from:

Slide animationSlide animationSlide animation
Explore the wide array of transition animations for PowerPoint.

But how do you decide which transition to use? It's a good idea to think about the content of the slide that you're transitioning to. For example, if you're presenting a solution to problems you've presented, the Fracture animation is a strong metaphor.

Fracture PowerPoint animationsFracture PowerPoint animationsFracture PowerPoint animations
The Fracture transition in action.

A final tip for using a transition animation is to look into the Dynamic Content category. These are animations that use your current slides as a basis and animate between that.

For example, the animation will do something with the elements on the slide. Think of them as "smart" PowerPoint animations that adapt to your own content! This is ideal if you'd like to do something more subtle. 

7. Build Step-by-Step Animations into Your Slides

If you'd like to make an explanatory slide, that often means that there are multiple elements of information that you'd like to present. The easiest way to do this is to reveal a numbered (or bullet) list:

Step by step PowerPoint animationsStep by step PowerPoint animationsStep by step PowerPoint animations
A simple recipe slide, consisting of a few steps.

Instead of displaying all five steps at the same time, we'll display each step one by one. Imagine you're giving a cooking class. Showing one step at a time helps your audience to keep their focus on the next action and not run ahead.

Step 1. Apply the Fade Animation

Open the Animation Pane. Select the first step and let's pick Fade as our entrance effect. Next, select the second step and also pick Fade again. Repeat this process for the remaining steps. 

Be careful to select each step individually, instead of all the steps at once. Otherwise, they'll appear all at the same time.
Sequential animation PowerPointSequential animation PowerPointSequential animation PowerPoint
In PowerPoint, you can see the sequence of the animations on your slide.

Step 2. Set the Timing

Now open the Animation Pane. You can see the five animations you've just added. When you click on the animation, you can open the Timing tab once again.

Now, in the context of cooking, instead of having it start on click, you might want to start the animation After Previous and choose a Delay.

You're basically building a timer in this sense. Imagine that in the class, everybody has five minutes to grate the zucchini. Select the third animation (sauté zucchini). Choose the After Previous timing and pick a delay of 300 seconds.

Order animation in PowerPointOrder animation in PowerPointOrder animation in PowerPoint
You can use the Timing tab in the Animation Pane in a creative way.

This is what will happen:

  1. Grate Zucchini will appear.
  2. 5 minutes (300 seconds) will pass.
  3. The delayed animation kicks in and sauté zucchini will appear.

This is an example of PowerPoint animations that build up with the pace of your presentation.

8. Review Animations for Consistency

When you're finished adding animations for PowerPoint, your work isn't quite finished. You should always review your presentation to be sure each animation works the way you intend it to. There's nothing worse than being caught off-guard in front of an audience. Yet, it's easy to put an animation PowerPoint effect in the wrong place.

The best way to review your animations is to go through the presentation after you're done. Play it in Slide Show view, and only pay attention to your animations. 

Ask yourself these questions:

  • How does the pacing feel?
  • Are there sections in your presentation where there's too much animation? Too little?
  • How does the timing feel?

Reviewing your presentation as a whole is a final, yet essential check step. It helps you ensure that your PowerPoint animation effects are working exactly right. And it lets you make any edits you need to before an audience encounters issues.

9. Use Animations to Present Your Data Dynamically

By now, it should be easy to make a whole chart appear using an animation. But the true capacity of using animations with data is to pace how the chart is presented. We can do this by choosing the build order of our animation.

Data PowerPoint animationsData PowerPoint animationsData PowerPoint animations
A slide presenting data in PowerPoint.

Step 1. Add an Animation to a Chart

Click on the chart you would like to animate. Next, add an animation. Again, your best bet here is to use simple animations in PowerPoint that won't distract.

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Use the drop-down to select an animation for your PowerPoint chart.

Step 2. Change the Animation Effects

Click on the Effect Options drop-down. This menu lets you control the order of the animation and what data appears. You have access to the following options:

  • As One Object
  • By Series
  • By Category
  • By Element in Series
  • By Element in Category
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Use the Effect Options menu to control animation in PowerPoint charts and graphs.

This offers unique flexibility in how to present data displayed in the chart. For example, would you like to display one piece of data for several years, or all pieces of data per year? It's possible with the above animation options.

10. Pitch a New Product With Controlled Animation

One of the more exciting ways to use animations is to pitch a new product. This lets you grab your audience's attention! Animation offers the opportunity to present a product in an aesthetically pleasing way.

The best way to pitch a new product is to work in a 'less is more' fashion. Apple is good at this for example, when you see their presentations. Usually, a simple entrance animation works perfectly.

To make your animation a little bit more dramatic, play around with the timing. Instead of using the traditional 0.5 seconds, go for 1 or even 2 seconds. 

This has a large impact on how the animation is seen. This is because slower animations are less commonly used in presentations. It's a cool way to add some drama with animation in PowerPoint.

11. Replicate Effects Easily With the Animation Painter

The Animation Painter is a powerful feature in PowerPoint that saves you lots of time. What it does is allow you to copy and duplicate animations from one object to another. 

To use the Animation Painter, start by selecting the object with the animation you want to copy. Then, go to the Animations tab and click on the Animation Painter button. The cursor changes to a paintbrush icon.

Next, click on the object that you want to apply the animation to. When you do, the animation instantly applies to the new object.

PowerPoint slide animation painterPowerPoint slide animation painterPowerPoint slide animation painter
Use the Animation Painter in PowerPoint to quickly duplicate animation formats from one object to another.

Using the Animation Painter helps you create consistent and engaging animations. It's very useful when you have many objects that need the same animation effects. 

Remember - your goal is to preserve a steady, constant look and feel. The Animation Painter saves you time and ensures each animation matches others.

12. Use a Transition to Declutter and Simplify

If you've got a busy layout, it often helps to use some exit animations to clean up your slide. This lets you grab the attention of the audience once again if a simple slide follows.

You can remove individual elements on the slide by using exit animations. Another method is to use a strong Transition between slides.

Morph is an interesting transition to use. It compares the elements between both slides. Then, it figures out the ideal way to transition. Sometimes it works, but it's more of a smooth transition rather than a strong exit animation.

Transition PowerPoint animationsTransition PowerPoint animationsTransition PowerPoint animations
These transition PowerPoint animation effects help you declutter layouts and styles.

Here, an animation such as Curtains, Crush or Honeycomb would be more suitable. Try to use this only once or twice in a presentation, as these animations tend to be visually heavy.

13. Grab Attention With Formatting Text Animations

You can use the formatting text animations to emphasize text in your presentation. You have a variety of options for highlighting text, such as:

  • Font Color
  • Brush Color
  • Underline
  • Bold Reveal
  • Bold Flash

Bold Flash is an excellent way of highlighting a line of text in a busy slide, for example.

Text slide animationText slide animationText slide animation
Try these text style effects as a great example of animation PowerPoint.

With PowerPoint slide animation, it's easy to call attention to a piece of text. Audiences always appreciate clarity and focus on your message. Slide animation helps you stay on track.

14. Work With Pre-Animated Premium Presentation Designs

PowerPoint animation effects help bring content to life. But they can also be quite time-consuming to work with. That’s especially true if you’re building slide designs (and animating them) from scratch.

Here’s a top way to save time and present in style: use pre-built templates. Envato Elements has thousands of animated options available to you.

When you choose an animated template, you don’t have to work with animation PowerPoint tools. Instead, you’ll find animations already in place on your slides. Simply drop in your own content, and you’re all set.

Unigraph PowerPoint animationsUnigraph PowerPoint animationsUnigraph PowerPoint animations
A premium template like UNIGRAPH comes fully animated.

It’s worth noting that using an animated template doesn’t mean giving up creative control. You can use built-in animation in PowerPoint features to make changes and adjustments.

It’s really the best of both worlds. You’ll save time, while still being able to work with animations in PowerPoint however you want.

15. Adjust Animation Triggers to Control the Flow of Slides

The Trigger menu in PowerPoint is a tool that helps you control how animations work on your slides. It lets you choose what causes an animation to start, such as a mouse click or a specific timing delay. You'll find this on the Animations tab, in the Advanced Animation group.

For example, imagine you've got a picture on a slide that you want to animate when a viewer clicks it. Select the picture, then click on the Trigger drop-down. Open the On Click Of field and check out your options. These all ensure that the animation only starts when the picture is clicked.

Trigger animations for PowerPointTrigger animations for PowerPointTrigger animations for PowerPoint
Use the Trigger menu to control how slide animations in PowerPoint perform.

You can also use the Trigger menu to craft more complex animations. For instance, you can have one object move across the screen when the viewer clicks on another object. With Trigger settings, you'll gain control over when animations start and how they look.

Inspiration: Working With the Best Animated PowerPoint Templates (Video)

It's important to use animations the right way in your presentation. In this video, learn how to use pro templates to add powerful animated slide designs to PowerPoint quickly.  Also, see some premium animated PowerPoint templates in action. 

You can find more great animated PowerPoint templates on Envato Elements. Browse through this curated selection for more:  

The Top Source for PowerPoint Slide Animation Templates (With Unlimited Use)

Envato Elements is the ultimate source for stunning PowerPoint slide animation templates. These designs help you craft your own animations for PowerPoint - fast. For a flat monthly rate, you’ll unlock access to thousands of custom options. In moments, they let you build out animation PowerPoint slides of your own.

Plus, Elements includes countless other digital assets. As a member, you’ll enjoy access to fonts, music, stock photos, and much more. All these resources pair perfectly with animation in PowerPoint templates.

Find PowerPoint Templates

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Envato Elements offers thousands of premium, pre-built animation PowerPoint templates.

Sure, you can find pre-built PowerPoint slide animation templates online. But they simply cannot compare with the features and quality you’ll see with Envato Elements designs. With an Elements template, you’ll benefit from:

  • Sleek modern layouts. Slide designs are made by creative experts. They’re meant to bring your content to the forefront.
  • Pre-animated designs. As we explored above, you’ll benefit from animations already built in. This saves the work of manually creating animations for PowerPoint.
  • Drag-and-drop placeholders. It’s incredibly easy to illustrate slides. Simply drag and drop content right into place, thanks to content placeholders. 

As you can see, Envato Elements is the best value for creatives in 2023. Join today and find your favorite animation PowerPoint templates!

Learn More About Animations in PowerPoint

There’s so much to learn when it comes to PowerPoint slide animation techniques. Fortunately, you don’t have to go it alone. We've got more great guides for PowerPoint animation effects and more.

At Envato Tuts+, we've got many handy tutorials that feature slide animation and other handy tips in PPT. You can find the full collection in our How to Use PowerPoint (Ultimate Tutorial Guide). It brings all our great PowerPoint tutorials together in one place. Check out our favorites below:

Make Great Presentations (Free eBook Download)

We've got the perfect complement to this tutorial, which walks you through the complete presentation process. The right animations for PowerPoint help your presentation stand out, but there's a whole lot more to master. Learn how to write your presentation, design it like a pro, and prepare it to present powerfully. 

Download our eBook: The Complete Guide to Making Great Presentations. It's available for free with a subscription to the Tuts+ Business Newsletter. 

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Build Stunning PowerPoint Animation Effects Now!

As you see, it's not difficult to use animations in PowerPoint. The key takeaways are to think about the context and timing of your animations. Less is usually more when it comes to animation. 

Searching for the top PowerPoint animation templates to get started? Browse the vast Envato Elements library and join today. If you need a great place to start, explore our collection of Microsoft PowerPoint Templates (Ultimate Guide to the Best PPT). It's a great way to get started - fast!

What are you waiting for? Find a template and start building amazing PowerPoint animation effects of your own!

Note: This tutorial was originally published in November of 2017. It's been updated with a new video by Andrew Childress. It's also been reviewed and updated to be current and relevant for 2023 by Andrew Childress.

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