Working With Slides in PowerPoint [A Complete Guide!]


To create a powerful presentation – the kind that resonates with your audiences, you need to create great slides! But, all this work really starts with knowing how to work with slides in PowerPoint!

In this article, I will share with you all the basic details of working with slides such as adding, deleting, duplicating slides, and much more! Plus, in the end, I will also help you understand how you can design your slides to make your presentation visually appealing with great ease!

So, let’s get started!

1. How to Add or Insert a Slide in PowerPoint? 

Let’s start with the basics first. Adding or inserting a slide in your PowerPoint presentation is as easy as a click of a button.

To add a slide in PowerPoint, first, click on any slide in the slide navigation panel on the left part of your screen. Then, click on the “Home” tab, and select the “New Slide” option. A new slide will be added. Alternatively, you can also use the keyboard shortcut “Ctrl+M”.

To learn this part in further detail, make sure to check out my other article on how to add a slide in PowerPoint!

Nevertheless, the process is described below in detail –

Step-1: Place the cursor in your preferred sequence

The first step is to click on your preferred sequence in the “Slide Navigation” bar, which is the sidebar to the left of your screen showing thumbnails of all the slides in your PowerPoint presentation. There will be an orange line indicating the selected sequence.

Step-2: Click on the “New Slides” icon

In this step, all you have to do is to click on the “New Slides” icon. It is the icon above the button that says, “New Slides”. The icon looks like a plus ‘+’ sign over a square with comparative tables on it. This will immediately add a slide in the sequence of the selected area in the “Slide Navigation” sidebar.

2. How to Create Slides in PowerPoint? 

Creating a new slide is very easy in PowerPoint. Open a new PowerPoint file and follow the two simple steps described below, to create a slide of your preferred layout in your PowerPoint presentation.

Step-1: Click on the “New Slides” button 

The first step of the process is to click on the “New Slides” button, which is below the icon that looks like a plus ‘+’ sign over a square as described in the previous step. This will open a drop-down menu.

Step-2: Select your preferred layout

In this step, simply select your preferred layout for the new slide. Once you click on the preferred layout, the new slide will be added to your PowerPoint presentation with the selected layout.

3. How to Copy Slides in PowerPoint? 

I covered this topic in complete detail in my other article on how to copy and paste in PowerPoint. You may want to check that out for more methods and secret tips!

But, in a nutshell, there are two ways in which you can copy a slide from your PowerPoint presentation. One way is to use the mouse and the other is to use the keyboard. The two methods are described below.

Method-1: Using the Mouse

You can use the mouse to copy the slide on your presentation.

Step 1 – Copy the Slide

Right-click” on the slide that you want to copy, and it will open the drop-down menu. From the drop-down menu, click on the “Copy” option.

Once you’ve clicked on the “Copy” option, the slide will be temporarily saved in the clipboard of your computer.

Step 2 – Paste the Slide

Just how you managed to copy a slide, you can paste the slide as well. Navigate to the location where you want to paste the slide. Then, right-click on the slide, and from the dropdown, click on “Paste“.

Method-2: Using the keyboard

You can also use the keyboard shortcut keys to copy the slides. Let’s take a look at how it’s done.

Step 1 – Copy the Slide

In this method, all you have to do is to select the slide that you want to copy and while the slide is selected, click on the two buttons “Ctrl + C” together on your keyboard.

Step 2 – Paste the Slide

Once you’ve copied the slide, you can paste it to a destination location. Simply use the “Ctrl+V” keyboard shortcut for the same.

4. How to Delete Slides in PowerPoint? 

Similar to copying a slide, there are two methods that you can use to delete a slide in your PowerPoint presentation. Both of these methods are described in the section below.

Method 1: Using the Mouse

In this method, you have to “Right Click” on the slide that you want to remove and then select the “Delete Slide” option from the drop-down menu.

After you click on the “Delete Slide” option, the selected slide will be removed from your PowerPoint presentation.

Method-2: Using the Keyboard

This method is simpler than using the dropdown menu. All you have to do is select the slide that you want to delete and then hit the “Delete” button or the “Back Space” button on the keyboard of your computer and the slide will be removed from your PowerPoint presentation immediately.

5. How to Group Slides in PowerPoint? 

Grouping slides together is a very effective way of keeping your PowerPoint presentation organized. To group slides with different purposes into a different collection of slides, you have to add sections to the “Slide Navigation” sidebar.

The whole process is described in 5 easy steps below.

Step-1: “Right-click” above the first slide of the group

The first step is to move your cursor right above the first slide of the group that you are trying to make and then “Right-click” on that area. This will open a drop-down menu.

Step-2: Select the “Add Section” option

In this second step, you have to click on the “Add Section” option from the drop-down menu. It is the last option in that drop-down menu. After clicking on it a pop-up window will appear on your screen.

Step-3: Rename the section

In the pop-up window, you opened in the last step, rename the group with an appropriate title, and hit the “Rename” button which is the button to the left of the two buttons at the bottom of the pop-up window.

This will add the starting point and the title of the group you are making.

Step-4: Make another section under the last slide of the group

After you have created the title section of the group, make another group under the last slide of your preferred group of slides. This will set the parameter for which slides are to be grouped together.

Step-5: Collapse the group

Click on the small arrow pointing to the right, just before the name of the group of slides. After you do so, you will see that the slides have been grouped together under the newly added section and the number in the bracket beside it indicates how many slides are in that group.

6. How to Hide Slides in PowerPoint? 

To hide a slide in your presentation your PowerPoint presentation, you have to use the “Slide Sorter” view and hide the slide from there. The whole process is described step-by-step below.

 Step-1: Select the “Slide Sorter” view

The first step of the process is to go to the “View” tab. In the “View” tab, click on the “Slide Sorter” view from the “Presentation” views of the tab. This will change the viewing mode of your PowerPoint presentation and you will be able to see all the slides in smaller thumbnails grouped together.

Step-2: “Right-click” on the slide

In this step, find the slide that you want to hide in the “Slide Sorter” view and then “Right-click” on it. This will open a drop-down menu.

Step-3: Select the “Hide Slide” option

After you have opened the drop-down menu, select the “Hide Slide” option. This will immediately hide the slide from your PowerPoint presentation. The thumbnail of the slide will be greyed out and the slide number will also be crossed, indicating that the slide is hidden.

7. How to Number Slides in PowerPoint? 

To number the sequence of the slides in your PowerPoint presentation, you have to go to the “Slide Master” view and checkmark the slide number from the “Header and Footer” option. The whole process is described in easy steps below.

Step-1: Open the “Slide Master” view

The first step is to go to the “View” tab which is the second to last tab of the ribbon. In the “View” tab, click on the “Slide Master” view in the “Master Views” section. This will change the PowerPoint view to the “Slide Master” view.

Step-2: Select the “Header & Footer” option

In this step, select the “Master Slide”. The “Master Slide” is the first slide in the “Slide Master” view and you will notice that it is the only slide that is a little bigger and to the right than the rest of the slides in the navigation bar.

After selecting the “Master Slide”, go to the “Insert” tab on the ribbon and select the “Header & Footer” option, which is located in the “Text” section of the tab. A pop-up window will appear on your screen.

Step-3: Tick mark the “Slide number” option

In this step, select the box of the “Slide Number” option and then hit the “Apply to all” button which is the second button of the 3 buttons at the bottom right corner of the pop-up window.

Step-4: Exit the Slide Master

Make sure that you exit the slide master. To do that, first, go back to the “Slide Master” tab. Then, from the ribbon, click on “Close Slide Master“.

After that, the slide number of all the slides will be added to your PowerPoint presentation.

8. How to Link Slides in PowerPoint? 

To link different slides in your PowerPoint presentation to each other, you have to type in a text, that can be hyperlinked to the slide in your PowerPoint presentation.

Type in a text that you can click to go to the linked slide and then follow the process described in easy steps below.

Step-1: Select the “Link” option

To begin, “Right-click” on the word that will lead you to the linked slide. A drop-down menu will appear on your screen. From the drop-down menu, select the “Link” option. This will open a pop-up window.

Step-2: Select the “Place in this document” option

After you have opened the “Insert Hyperlink” pop-up window, select the “Place in this document” option in the sidebar. This will take you to another page in the pop-up window.

Step-3: Select the slide you want to link

On this page of the pop-up window, select the slide that you want to link the current slide to and then hit the “Ok” button at the bottom right corner of your screen.

This will add a link to the word in the slide and upon clicking on the word while holding the “Ctrl” key on your keyboard, you will be taken to the linked slide.

9. How to Design Slides in PowerPoint? 

Designing your slide to fit the theme of your message will make your presentations more engaging. There are two ways in which you can design the slides in your PowerPoint presentation. Both of the methods are explained in the following section.

9a. Using Design Ideas 

By using the “Design Ideas” tool in Microsoft PowerPoint, you can instantly and seamlessly design slides to make them more attractive and engaging.

To use the “Design Ideas” tool, you have to go to the “Design” tab and click on the “Design Ideas” feature which is located in the “Designer” section. It is the last option in the “Design” tab.

I’ve covered the “Design Ideas” tool in great detail in another article where I also provide you tips on how to use it to automatically design your slides in PowerPoint! So, make sure you check out the article on how to use design ideas in PowerPoint!

However, a quick glance will remind you that these templates provided by default in PowerPoint are quite old-fashioned. I will not recommend using the built-in themes and templates in PowerPoint if you want to make your presentation look professional!

9b. Using Presentation Templates 

Another method of designing a presentation is using templates.

Templates in PowerPoint are pre-designed sets of slide layouts that can be adapted to the content on your slide and make your presentation look visually appealing!

You can use the presentation templates provided by the PowerPoint software from the “Design” tab to instantly design the slide in your PowerPoint presentation.

Simply go to the design tab, expand the themes section and choose a theme. This will help your slides look different from the plain and simple presentation.

Instead, I would suggest choosing a platform like Envato that provides you with ton of different options that are very affordable! I personally use templates from Envato all the time. (in fact, the images that you see in this article are also from a template!)

I’ve listed some of my personal favorite templates for your presentations. Check them out in the next section!

10. Top 5 Templates for Amazing Presentations

Our recommended templates have been chosen to give you a set of all the necessary types of slide designs that you might need. These will be helpful not just to get you started, but also with multiple presentation that you may want to design later on as these templates are quite versatile.

Here is a list of our top 5 picks of templates to make your presentations amazing!

1. Startup X - Perfect Pitch Deck Template

Startup X – Perfect Pitch Deck Powerpoint Template includes all the necessary infographics, charts, icons and hundreds of slide templates that you can use to make your business pitch more elegant and professional.

2. Massive X Presentation Template

The Massive X Presentation Template v.5.5 Fully Animated includes 760 ready-to-use slide templates and more than 930 fonts and vectors. You can use this template for virtually all purposes, but it is best for business proposals, pitch decks, portfolios, agency presentations, marketing presentations, and more!

3. Business Proposal PowerPoint Template

The Business Proposal PowerPoint Template is fully focused on giving your business presentations an edge and making them look more professional. It uses attractive infographics, charts, and messages and its soft turquoise color makes it easier on the eyes.

4. Multipurpose Infographic PowerPoint Template

Multipurpose Infographics PowerPoint Template provides you with a bundle of more than 3000 designed slides with over 50 color variations to make the information in your PowerPoint presentation more engaging. 

These templates are great to represent the data in a particular fashion, and you will find it extremely useful for your presentations.

5. Clean PowerPoint Template

We chose the Clean PowerPoint Template mainly for its aesthetics. The template provides over 700 very simple yet beautifully designed slides with over 5 color variations that make your PowerPoint presentation look more professional.

If you are looking for a minialistic look, go for this template!

Credit to cookie_studio (on Freepik) for the featured image of this article (further edited)

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