Create a pop-up window

How can you create a popup or cause an image to appear on a single slide only if it is clicked on or scrolled over in PowerPoint? It would be like on a web page, where you click or rollover a spot on the slide and reveal an explanation box or another small image

Pop-up windows and images that appear when you click are a great way to add interactivity to PowerPoint. You can use them in an educational or business context.

One way to accomplish this on Windows (PC) is with triggers. (Unfortunately, the Mac version of PowerPoint doesn’t support triggers.) What are triggers? They are objects that you click to cause some animation to occur. Essentially, you turn an object into a clickable button. To use this method, create the buttons and the pop-up windows. In this slide, the red dots are the buttons and I used AutoShape callouts for the pop-up windows. You could also use images or any other object that you can insert on a slide. For the entrance custom animation for the callouts, I chose Zoom. To add it, choose Slide Show> Custom Animation (in PowerPoint 2007, Animations tab> Custom Animation). Select the object, and choose Add Effect> Entrance> Zoom. If you don’t see that option, choose More Effects first.

 buttons and the pop-up windows

buttons and the pop-up windows

When you have your object animated, click its item in the Custom Animation task pane  and choose Timing to open the Zoom dialog box (the name of the dialog box is named according to the animation you chose).

choose Timing to open the Zoom dialog box

choose Timing to open the Zoom dialog box

Click the Triggers button and choose the Start Effect on Click of option. From the drop-down list, choose the object that you want to click. Click OK.

Repeat for each callout and button object.

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22 comments to Create a pop-up window

  • Michele

    This is awesome. Thank you for solving this problem for us!

  • Gemini

    This is awesome! I was able to make nice animation using triggers. Well explained.

  • Nhung Pham

    It was same me. Thanks for all your hard works

  • Jay S

    Thanks a lot!!!

  • Navaneeth

    Good one… Very informative. Thanks much.

  • Gail Hunt

    Can this be done as well in Microsoft Powerpoint 2007?

  • Yes. As far as I remember, you can do it in 2003, too.

  • Carlos

    Quick question on using this and by the way great write up, got it the first time doing it. I have been saving my project as an MHT or MHTML but it will not perform the same in IE as it does in PP. I am curious if it could be my browser or maybe PP not allowing me to do it or just not saving correctly. I am using Word 2010 and am aware of using the Microsoft VBA Project to save it. It’s has stumped me for a week trying to figure out what is wrong.

  • Carlos,
    I would just say that the Save to HTML feature is very buggy. In the upcoming 2013, this feature was deleted. There are other ways to show a PowerPoint file in a browser, such as the Office Web Apps.

  • Carlos

    Ellen, thanks for the quick reply and suggestion. I will look into the Office Web Apps. Oh and I meant to say Microsoft 2010 instead of Word 2010. I did manage to get it to somewhat work with an older 97-2003 PP version on another computer with a somewhat simpler version of the above pop-up but you are right, it is very buggy. Just trying to find a simple way to create an interactive picture/map of our office but I can not host.

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  • Rose

    How can I make any of these pop up window disappears when I click on another red button?
    To make it more clear, I need only one pop up window to appear at a time.

  • You can set up a trigger to make the first window disappear. It could be the next object you click, so that when you click it, both the disappear and appear animation happen together.

  • Tom

    Is there a way if you have multiple triggers to make the when yo press the next trigger the previous animation will remove itself from the screen, so the pop-up disappears if another trigger is clicked?

  • Yes, see my previous comment. A trigger can be applied to 2 different animations. One would make an object disappear and a second would make another disappear. So you set each animation to occur on clicking the same object. If you set the 2nd animation to happen With Previous, clicking the trigger makes one object disappear and another appear, both at the same time.

  • Stephanie

    Works like a charm – Thanks! Only problem is: I want to add several popups to one slide. I was able to make my first appear then disappear when viewing the slide show, but when I go back to the working slide, the original is just sitting there on top of the slide and I can’t work on other parts. Any suggestions? I figure I can move the original to the side while I create new ones, but this seems like it will get messy when I get to the 3rd or 4th popup. Thanks!

  • Stephanie, Do you mean you want one of top of the other? Have you tried the Selection pane? You can temporarily hide objects so that you can work on other objects beneath them. Take a look at this:

  • RJAK

    Thanks for the tip, previously, only solution was linking to another slide. This is MUCH better answer to displaying datalink information in a consolidated format. USAF and us 1C5’s thank you ma’am.

  • thanks for the tip ellen, very usefull 🙂

    taufiq hidayah

  • donna

    So if triggers aren’t MAC supported, what would be the workaround, while simultaneously having triggers that would work on the PC. Such as having the MAC link to another slide, but PC use popup windows. …

  • I found this information really helpful, but I can’t work out how to animate the objects randomly instead of as part of a sequence.

  • Sarah B


    I found your tutorial when trying to create pop-ups for a process flow. I can get everything to work as you described, except for my pop-ups appear on the screen until I click the step of the process flow they are associated with (versus them being hidden until the click occurs). Is there a way to fix things so that the pop-ups do not show up unless the object they’re associated with is clicked? Many thanks!

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