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Default Behaviors for Action Buttons in PowerPoint 2013

Explore the different types of Action buttons and their default behavior in PowerPoint 2013.


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Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint 2013
OS: Windows 7 and higher






Once you place Action Buttons on your slide in PowerPoint 2013, you can make them do all sorts of actions when clicked. What sets Action Buttons apart from other shape types in PowerPoint is the iconography they contain. For most users, an icon such as a leftwards arrow indicates moving to the previous slide and a rightwards arrow does indicate progressing to the next slide. Another advantage of these icon-equipped Action Buttons is that they are language independent, and can work very well in multi-language and international presentations. In this tutorial you are going to explore the different types of Action Buttons, and their default behaviors.

Action Buttons can be found within the Shapes gallery, which can be accessed from the Insert or Home tabs of the Ribbon. Figure 1 shows the Action Buttons category within the Shapes gallery.

Action buttons category within the Shapes gallery
Figure 1: Action buttons category within the Shapes gallery

Tip: To learn how you can insert an Action Button, explore our Action Buttons in PowerPoint 2013 tutorial.

Action Buttons are of 12 types -- these are explained below, from left to right as displayed within the Action Buttons category as shown in Figure 1, above:

  1. Back or Previous: Takes you to the previous slide.

    Back or Previous Action Button
  2. Forward or Next: Takes you to the next slide.

    Forward or Next Action Button
  3. Beginning: Goes to the first slide of the active presentation.

    Beginning Action Button
  4. End: Takes you directly to the last slide in the presentation, skipping all slides in between.

    End Action Button
  5. Home: Moves to the first slide of the presentation. Yes, this is the same behavior as what happens with the Beginning Action Button.

    Home Action Button
  6. Information: No default behavior is available for this Action Button type -- typically you can use this to link to a slide that has information, such as contact information. Or, you can use it even to link to a web page.

    Information Action Button
  7. Return: When clicked, takes you to the most recently viewed slide.

    Return Action Button
  8. Movie: No default behavior for this Action Button type -- typically is used to interact with a movie (video) file.

    Movie Action Button
  9. Document: No default behavior for this Action Button type -- mainly used to hyperlink to another document such as a Word document, Excel sheet, PDF, etc.

    Document Action Button
  10. Sound: No default behavior for this Action Button type -- typically is used to interact with a sound (audio) file.

    Sound Action Button
  11. Help: No default behavior for this Action Button type -- typically you can use this to link to a slide that has help information, or a Q&A slide.

    Help Action Button

  12. Custom: No default behavior for this Action Button type -- this typically has no icon, and you can use as required. Since this variant has no iconography, you can easily add text to this button to identify its purpose -- see our Text within Shapes in PowerPoint s2013 tutorial to learn adding text to shapes.

    Custom Action Button

Now that you have learned how to insert an Action Button, and what default behaviors these Action Button types represent, we will explore editing hyperlinks for these Action Buttons.

See Also:

Default Behaviors for Action Buttons in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Default Behaviors for Action Buttons in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts

PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences:
PowerPoint 2016, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2007 and 2003 for Windows
PowerPoint 2016 and 2011 for Mac

Have your ever used keyboard shortcuts and sequences in PowerPoint? Or are you a complete keyboard aficionado? Do you want to learn about some new shortcuts? Or do you want to know if your favorite keyboard shortcuts are documented?

Go and get a copy of our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences ebook.



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