The Ribbon that you see within the PowerPoint interface was designed to solve a problem, older versions of PowerPoint that were populated with menus and toolbars ended with so many submenus and toolbars that many users did not know if a specific feature even existed in PowerPoint. Even worse, the toolbars could occupy so much screen real estate that you would be left with a much smaller area for your slide! Enter the Ribbon which did help resolve some of these problems, but it came with a problem of its own: it did not provide customization options when first introduced in PowerPoint 2007. This was quickly rectified in PowerPoint 2010.
All buttons on the Ribbon are placed within separate Tabs, each Tab has groups with a few buttons each, we explain this in our Ribbon and Tabs tutorial. Customization of the Ribbon involves four typical areas:
- Adding and Renaming Ribbon Tabs, we cover this topic on this page
- Reordering and Removing Ribbon Tabs
- Working with Custom Groups in Ribbon Tabs
- Adding Commands to Custom Groups
Follow these steps to learn more:
- Choose the File menu to bring up Backstage view. Now, select Options as shown in Figure 1.
Figure 1: Options within File menu
- Alternatively, the easier way is to right-click anywhere on the Ribbon, and choose the Customize the Ribbon option, as shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2: Customize the Ribbon option within the right-click contextual menu
- Either way, this opens the PowerPoint Options dialog box, as shown in Figure 3. Make sure you choose the Customize Ribbon option within the sidebar as shown highlighted in red within Figure 3. This shows the relevant options on the right side of the PowerPoint Options dialog box (see Figure 3 again).
Figure 3: PowerPoint Options dialog box
- Since you want to create a new tab, click on the New Tab button (highlighted in blue within Figure 3, above). This will add the New Tab (Custom) within the Main Tabs list, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 4.
Figure 4: New custom tab added
- Note that when the New Tab (Custom) is added, a default New Group (Custom) is also added. This is because all your commands within a tab need to reside in a group.
- You should now rename your custom tab. Select the newly added New Tab (Custom), and click the Rename button (highlighted in blue within Figure 4, above). This brings up the Rename window, as shown in Figure 5, provide a name, and click the OK button.
Figure 5: Rename the new tab
- You can rename the New Group (Custom) option the same way you did for New Tab (Custom). The only difference is that the Rename window lets you choose a symbol for your group, as shown in Figure 6. We explain more about customizing groups in our Working with Custom Groups in Ribbon Tabs tutorial.
Figure 6: Custom group Rename window
- When done, click the OK button within the PowerPoint Options dialog box to get back to PowerPoint interface. Figure 7, below shows the new custom tab within the Ribbon with the default custom group.
Figure 7: Custom tab with custom group within Ribbon
- Save your presentation often.
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Add and Rename Ribbon Tabs in PowerPoint 365 for Mac
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