Make a Timeline - Skills and Techniques

The techniques and skills in this page will help you make high-quality timelines with the least time.

If you are a newbie to create a timeline, you are recommended to read this article. It contains some skills, short cuts and answers to some problems you might occur. Spending a few minutes reading this ahead can save you much more time.

1. Set the Start and End Time of the Timeline

Through Edraw timeline maker, this step can be done with an automatic button. After you drag a timeline bar from the library and drop on the drawing page, you will see a small action button appear on the right up corner. Click this button and a window named Shape Data will pop up, from which you can see Start Date, End Date, Interval and Date Format.

Timeline Bar

Start Date: Click the small arrow to select a start date.

End Date: Click the small arrow to select an end date.

Interval: Click the small arrow to choose from the drop-down list.

Date Format: Click the small arrow to choose from the drop-down list. The built-in date formats are:

  1. yyyy: 2015
  2. yyyy-MM-dd: 2015-01-30
  3. M/d/yyyy: 1/30/2015
  4. MMM d, yyyy: Jan 30, 2015
  5. M/d/yyyy h:mm AM/PM: 1/30/2015 3:45 PM

Here comes the question, what if the software doesn't include the format that I need? Never mind, you can define a format through the Define button.

For example, if you need the date of the interval appear with month abbreviation only, such as: Jan; Feb; Mar..., try the following steps:

  1. Click Define.
  2. From the Data box, click the Date Format.
  3. In the Format box, add one more format "MMM;", (don't forget the semicolon), and click OK.

Now from the drop-down list, you can find the "MMM;" format.

Define Date Format

2. How to customize the milestone?

In order to distinguish different categories of events or highlight significant deadlines, Edraw has included a collection of milestone symbols with different styles for you to choose.

Timeline Milestone

Some milestones are designed with action buttons, through which you can change the style with one click.

Set Milestone Style

You can adjust the text position on milestone with dynamic control handles.

Timeline Control Handle

3. How to customize the interval?

The intervals also have smart behavior. When you drop an interval on a timeline, the interval adjusts to fit the shape automatically. When you drag the border, the date will change accordingly.

Timeline Interval

Use the yellow dynamic control handle to adjust the description position.

Timeline Interval Description Position

4. Timeline Examples

Project Timeline

Timeline Example

How to Create a Timeline

Use Timeline in History Class

Share the page:

Get Started! You Will Love This Easy-To-Use Diagram Software.

Edraw Max is perfect not only for professional-looking flowcharts, organizational charts, mind maps, but also network diagrams, floor plans, workflows, fashion designs, UML diagrams, electrical diagrams, science illustration, charts and graphs... and that is just the beginning!

Top