Create professional slide layouts with PowerPoint Designer

Create professional slide layouts with PowerPoint Designer

PowerPoint Designer improves slides for Office 365 subscribers by automatically generating design ideas to choose from.

While you're putting content on a slide, Designer works in the background to match that content to professionally designed layouts.

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Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only, Office 365 feature. If you don't see the Design Ideas  The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button button, or you don't see certain features described on this page, read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas  The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button on the ribbon.

  2. The first time you try out PowerPoint Designer, it asks your permission to get design ideas for you. If you want to use Designer, select Turn on.

    To learn more, see the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

    Once you've turned on intelligent services, PowerPoint automatically shows you design ideas when you add photos to your slides.

    Designer enhances photos on slides with a single click.

  3. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  4. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Illustrations

PowerPoint Designer watches for key terms and concepts that it has illustrations for, and it shows you those illustrations in various layouts. The Illustrations are from the Office 365 icons library.

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer added illustration and design touches to

Turn off PowerPoint Designer

If you don't want PowerPoint Designer to automatically offer suggestions:

  1. On the File menu, click Options.

  2. In the PowerPoint Options dialog box, click the General tab on the left, then scroll toward the bottom and clear the Automatically show me design ideas check box.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only, Office 365 feature.
Find your Office version

Design ideas for one photo
 Applies to:

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1511 or later
 Semi-annual channels: Version 1602 or later
 

Multiple photos, color extraction, and facial recognition
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1603 or later
 Semi-annual channels: Version 1605 or later
 

Convert lists to SmartArt graphics
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1609 or later
 Semi-annual channels: Version 1701 or later
 

Design ideas for action-oriented lists
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1702 or later
 Semi-annual channels: Version 1708 or later
 

Design ideas where icons substitute for text
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
 Monthly Channel: Version 1612 or later
 Semi-annual channels: Not available yet
 

Design ideas for charts
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1705 or later
 Semi-annual channel (Targeted): Version 1803 or later
 Semi-annual channel: Not available yet
 

Design ideas for time lines
 Applies to:
 

PowerPoint for Office 365
Monthly Channel: Version 1707 or later
 Semi-annual channel (Targeted): Version 1803 or later
   Semi-annual channel: Not available yet

Design ideas for converting text to Icons + SmartArt graphics
 Applies to:

PowerPoint for Office 365 
 

Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only, Office 365 feature. If you don't see the Design Ideas  The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button button, or you don't see certain features described on this page, read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon.

    The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button
  2. The first time you try out PowerPoint Designer, it asks your permission to get design ideas for you. If you want to use Designer, select Turn on or Let's go.

    To learn more, see the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

    Once you've turned on intelligent services, PowerPoint automatically shows you design ideas when you add photos to your slides.

    When you select a design idea, it immediately appears full-size on the slide

  3. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  4. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button

You can ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Illustrations

PowerPoint Designer watches for key terms and concepts that it has illustrations for, and it shows you those illustrations in various layouts. The Illustrations are from the Office 365 icons library.

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer added illustration and design touches to

Turn off PowerPoint Designer

If you don't want PowerPoint Designer to offer suggestions:

  1. On the PowerPoint menu, select Preferences.

  2. Under Authoring and Proofing Tools, select General.

  3. In the General dialog box, under PowerPoint Designer, clear the Automatically show me design ideas check box.

The Design Ideas button is grayed out

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means:

  • You aren't connected to the internet, or

  • A slide isn't selected. (This can be the case when multiple slides are selected in the slide thumbnail pane in Normal view, or when the focus in the thumbnail pane is between two slides. It also is the case when the focus is in the Notes pane or you are in Slide Show view rather than Normal view.)

The Design Ideas button isn't there

PowerPoint Designer is a feature for Office 365 subscribers. If you don't see the Design Ideas button, you're using PowerPoint 2016 for Mac rather than PowerPoint for Office 365 for Mac.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only, Office 365 feature.
Find your Office version

 Applies to:

PowerPoint for Office 365 for Mac
Monthly Channel: Version 15.26.0.160910 or later
   

Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only feature for Office 365 for business. If you don't see the Design Ideas  The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button button, or you don't see certain features described on this page, read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon. The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button

    PowerPoint shows design ideas for your slide.

  2. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  3. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

Illustrations

PowerPoint Designer watches for key terms and concepts that it has illustrations for, and it shows you those illustrations in various layouts. The Illustrations are from the Office 365 icons library.

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer added illustration and design touches to

The Design Ideas button is grayed out

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means that someone else is currently also editing the slide:

  • If you're co-authoring a presentation with someone else and more than one person is actively editing a single slide at one time, Designer won't give design suggestions on that slide.

  • However, as soon as there's only person editing the slide, Designer will begin offering design suggestions again once that person does an action (such as adding a photo) that Designer can respond to.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

This is a subscriber-only, Office 365 for business feature.

 Applies to:

PowerPoint Online files stored in OneDrive for Business or SharePoint Online.

You must be signed in to Office 365 with an organizational ID (.com, .org).

Microsoft accounts (hotmail.com, outlook.com, live.com, msn.com) don't have access to PowerPoint Designer.

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using an iPad, but not an iPhone. Read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon.

    The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button
  2. The first time you try out PowerPoint Designer, it asks your permission to get design ideas for you. If you want to use Designer, select Turn on or Let's go.

    To learn more, see the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

    Once you've turned on intelligent services, PowerPoint automatically shows you design ideas when you add photos to your slides.

    When you select a design idea, it immediately appears full-size on the slide

  3. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  4. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

The Design Ideas button is grayed out

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means you aren't connected to the internet.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using an iPad, but not an iPhone.

 Applies to:

PowerPoint for iOS
Version 2.0.17042601 or later
   

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using an Android tablet, but not a phone. Read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon. The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button

  2. The first time you try out PowerPoint Designer, it asks your permission to get design ideas for you. If you want to use Designer, select Turn on or Let's go.

    To learn more, see the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

    Once you've turned on intelligent services, PowerPoint automatically shows you design ideas when you add photos to your slides.

    When you select a design idea, it immediately appears full-size on the slide

  3. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  4. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

The Design Ideas button is grayed out

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means you aren't connected to the internet.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using an Android tablet, but not a phone.

 Applies to:

PowerPoint for Android
Version 16.0.7531.1011 or later
   

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using a Windows tablet, but not a Windows phone. Read Requirements below for more details.

Get design ideas

  1. Ask for design ideas any time by choosing Design > Design Ideas on the ribbon.

    The PowerPoint Designer toolbar button
  2. The first time you try out PowerPoint Designer, it asks your permission to get design ideas for you. If you want to use Designer, select Turn on or Let's go.

    To learn more, see the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

    Once you've turned on intelligent services, PowerPoint automatically shows you design ideas when you add photos to your slides.

    When you select a design idea, it immediately appears full-size on the slide

  3. Scroll through the suggestions in the Design Ideas pane on the right side of the window.

  4. Click to select the design you want, or else close the window. If you select one of the ideas, your slide is changed accordingly.

    You can also select another idea from the pane or go back to your original slide design: Press Ctrl+Z to undo a design change you've just selected.

What Designer gives you:

Professional layouts

PowerPoint Designer detects pictures, charts, or tables on a slide and gives you several suggestions for arranging them in a cohesive, attractive layout.

Sample slide showing a text timeline and photo that PowerPoint Designer arranged and laid out

SmartArt graphics

Sample slide showing a text timeline that PowerPoint Designer converted to a SmartArt graphic

Designer can turn text such as lists, processes, or timelines into an easily readable SmartArt graphic.

The Design Ideas button is grayed out

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means you aren't connected to the internet.

Requirements

Task, checklist, planning symbol

PowerPoint Designer is available when you're using a tablet, but not a phone.

 Applies to:

PowerPoint Mobile
Version 16.0.8201.1017 or later
   

Troubleshooting

Design Ideas are only available to Office 365 subscribers

On desktop versions of PowerPoint, only subscribers get design ideas. You can try or buy a subscription here.

On PowerPoint Online, Design Ideas are available to folks who have Office 365 for business.

Two Office 365 subscription packages don't include Design Ideas: Office 365 Germany and Office 365 operated by 21Vianet.

Turn on the Office intelligent services

To use PowerPoint Designer, make sure that Office intelligent services are turned on:

Go to File > Options and look for Office intelligent services on the General tab.

Go to File > Options > General to enable or disable Intelligent Services

See Enabling and disabling intelligent services for more information.

An administrator may have turned off PowerPoint Designer

PowerPoint Designer is a feature for Office 365 subscribers, but some organizations turn off the feature. If you have an Office 365 subscription but don't see the Design Ideas button, ask your IT department.

Reinstall Office to get subscriber features

If you've upgraded from Office to an Office 365 subscription, you need to uninstall Office and then reinstall in order to get the subscriber features. See the instructions in these articles:

  1. Uninstall Office from a PC or Uninstall Office 2016 for Mac

  2. Reinstall Office 365

Restart the app to get PowerPoint Designer

Sometimes users find that the first time they start PowerPoint after installing Office 365, the Design Ideas button isn't available. Restarting the app fixes this problem.

If there are no Design Ideas available for you, a few things might be the cause. First of all:

  • Make sure you're connected to the Internet. PowerPoint Designer goes online to get its Design Ideas.

  • Use a theme that comes with PowerPoint (not a custom theme or one that you've downloaded from elsewhere).

Following are other problems and how to solve them:

No design ideas for slides with pictures

  • Make sure your slide has either the Title or Title + Content slide layout applied.

  • Don't use any additional objects or shapes on the same slide as your photo.

  • Use a maximum of four photos (.jpg, .png, .gif, or .bmp) per slide, and make sure they're larger than 200 x 200 pixels in size.

No design ideas for process-based slides

  • Make sure your slide has the Title + Content slide layout applied.

  • Don't use any additional photos, objects, or shapes on the same slide as your process text.

Because PowerPoint Designer is a relatively new service, it is still learning new tricks. If Designer can’t generate high-quality options for you, it won’t show any options at all. We're working hard to be able to generate great design ideas for more varieties of your content.

And of course, if you don’t find Designer useful, you can turn it off by going to File > Options > General, and then clearing the box that says Automatically show me design ideas.

Someone else is editing

If you are co-authoring a presentation with someone else and more than one person is actively editing a single slide at one time, Designer won't give design suggestions on that slide.

However, as soon as there's only person editing the slide, Designer will begin offering design suggestions again once that person does an action (such as adding a photo) that Designer can respond to.

No design ideas for slides that have shapes or text boxes

PowerPoint Designer isn't able to suggest design ideas when a slide has a shape or text box drawn on it. You can have photos and you can have text in a placeholder.

If you can see the Design Ideas button in PowerPoint but it's grayed out, it means:

  • You aren't connected to the internet, or

  • A single slide isn't selected. This can be the case when multiple slides are selected in the slide thumbnail pane in Normal view, or when the focus in the thumbnail pane is between two slides. It also is the case when the focus is in the Notes pane or you are in Slide Show view rather than Normal view.

See Also

Combining colors in PowerPoint: Mistakes to avoid

Format the background color of slides

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