Google Gab: Effective animation in Slides

Animation in presentations should always serve a purpose. Let’s look at the scenarios and how animation can be applied to make your message clearer while presenting. To reveal the animation task pane on the right, click the Insert drop-down menu and choose Animation.

Bullet point in a series

With the container housing your bullet points selected, on the task pane on the right, click +Add Animation. Be sure to click the box that says By paragraph. The default start condition is On click. That means that when you get to this slide, the first bullet point will appear when you click it. Click again, the next one will appear, and so on. This effect is great for the layering of ideas. Think of a sales presentation to a client as you are describing the various beneficial features of your services.

Bullet points individually

Fade inTo show bullet points one at a time and isolated (one bullet on the screen at a time), you will need to use text boxes rather than just type in the container. Then, animate each text box individually.

Select the first one and, for example, Fade in. With the same one selected, add another animation, fade out. They will all default to On click. Now, change the ones that make the previous one disappear to With previous, as shown in the picture at right.

Test your animation by clicking the Play button. You will need to click Stop before being able to make any other changes. This type of animation is useful if you’d prefer your audience focus on the issue at hand, rather than what you just covered. If you like, you can add another set of animation to bring them all back at once to summarize the point.


From the Insert dropdown menu, you’ll find the Diagram selection. Choose from several “out of the box” diagrams. Now, not all of these animate well. The telltale sign is whether the shapes are easily selected as individual objects. The organizational chart ones work well.

DiagramsSelect each shape in the order you wish it to come in and choose Add animation. You can click and drag to rearrange the order on the left. If a diagram is especially complex, presenting it in pieces might be just the thing to clarify it.

Also, you might consider breaking it up into several slides with one in the handout that has the complete diagram. Don’t be afraid to use different colors to help in understanding the parts of the whole.


There are a handful of transitions you can use in Slides to capture your audience’s attention. Use the last three judiciously. If every slide has a noticeable transition, the advantage of a more exciting one loses its luster. If you have presented multiple slides with bulleted statistical information, consider putting a more exciting transition in to “break the trance.”

  • Dissolve
  • Fade
  • Slide from Right
  • Slide from Left
  • Flip
  • Cube
  • Gallery

Not available in Slides


The only way to animate chart elements in Slides is to use a script. You’ll find more information about it here.

Motion path animation

This can be useful for showing simple screen operations by animating the path of a block arrow shape.