Snap chart styles use a carefully selected palette of colours, chosen to look just as good when printed as they do on screen. There may be times however, when you need to change the colours – perhaps to match your organisation’s branding, or to better reflect the category name.

This worksheet shows how to apply a new colour set to an existing chart, how to colourise individual chart categories, and how to save your custom style to use again.

Click the links below to jump to the section you need:

Apply a predefined colour set to a horizontal bar chart

In this example a new colour set is applied to a horizontal bar chart of responses to a question grid.

  1. Click BuildChart to build a new chart.
  2. Select the Style ‘Horizontal Stacked Bar Percent Transposed’.
  3. Type the grid questions into the analysis field.
  4. Select the options ‘Analysis Percents’ and ‘Transpose‘.
  5. Click ‘OK‘. The chart will look like this:
  6. Click Properties to open Analysis Properties‘.
  7. Now you can choose a new ‘Colour’ style from the list. Choose style ‘Colour – 5 point red to green labelled stacked’
  8. Click ‘OK‘. Your chart will now look like this:

This example uses a 5 point scale, however there are also colour sets specifically designed for horizontal bar charts with 3 or 7 points, on both a positive to negative, and a negative to positive scale. There are black and white styles designed specifically for print, and styles with colours replicating those found in 2003/2010 Excel versions. Colour sets can be applied to any chart style, not just horizontal bar charts.

Customise individual category colours

Category colours for any type of chart can be easily changed. In this example, the same colour style as used in the above example is applied to a 4 point scale, which also includes a ‘Don’t Know’ option. In this context, the ‘traffic light’ colour labelling would be misleading, therefore the ‘Don’t Know’ category colour will be changed from green to grey.

Note: The same steps can be followed to change category colours in any style of chart.


  1. Double-click the area of the chart you would like to change, in this case the ‘Don’t Know’ category:
  2. This will open the Chart Designer. The Chart Designer contains a number of options to change the appearance and content of your chart. Select the ‘Datapoint Defaults‘ section and select a new colour from the ‘Fill‘ section:
  3. Click ‘OK‘ to save changes. The category colour will now be changed in your chart.

Save a style to use again

There are two options. You can either save just the colour set, enabling you to apply the same colours to another chart in the future, or you can save the chart style itself.

  1. Right-click anywhere in the chart area and select ‘Save Style’:
  2. The ‘Save‘ dialog opens. Choose a save location and give your chart a name.
  3. Now you need to choose which ‘Style parts’ of the custom style you would like to save.
    • To save just the colour set, untick ‘Layout’ and ‘Background’, leaving only ‘Series’ checked
    • To save the complete chart style, leave all 3 ticked
  4. Click Save to finish. You can now browse to select your saved chart style or colour set in the Analysis Definition window.

Further Resources

For a detailed introduction to analysis in Snap, including a description of all variable types, how to create data filters and more, view the ‘Analysis Essentials’ interactive tutorial. If you’d like to learn more about reporting your survey results, including how to add your custom analyses to the default Summary Report, watch the ’Viewing, customising the default Questionnaire and Summary reports’ interactive tutorial.

Other worksheets you may be interested in:

Find more resources in the ‘Analysing Rating Scale Questions’ section.