Compressing A PowerPoint File (Benefits, How-To And Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 16 September 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

When you create a PowerPoint (PPT) presentation at work, sometimes it may be necessary to share it with your colleagues. Doing so may require you to compress your presentation files or convert them into different formats. Knowing how to compress your PowerPoint presentation can help you retain its quality and share it with your colleagues easily. In this article, we discuss the benefits of compressing a PowerPoint file, review five effective techniques to reduce file size and provide a few helpful tips.

What Are The Benefits Of Compressing A PowerPoint File?

Following are some of the key benefits of compressing a PowerPoint file:

  • It is easier to share, receive and store data more effectively when you compress video and audio resources of a PowerPoint presentation.

  • By making files smaller, it increases accessibility, as everyone can easily access them on mobile devices over the internet, allowing teams to work remotely on presentations.

  • As you can quickly upload and download compressed files, reducing the file size of your presentation may help you increase your productivity at work.

Related: 14 Tips To Improve Presentation Skills (With Importance)

5 Useful Techniques For Compressing A PowerPoint File

Following are five useful methods to reduce the size of a PowerPoint presentation file:

1. Compressing a PPT file by removing unwanted elements

With PowerPoint, you can make several slide layouts, handouts and note templates to accompany a presentation. While these components can make your presentation more interesting, they may also make your file larger. To find, compress or eliminate any such extra elements, consider these steps:

  1. Click 'View'. Locate 'View' at the top of the page and select it.

  2. Choose 'Slide master'. Locate the option labelled 'Slide master' and click it.

  3. Review the slide layouts to locate any media to compress. If you have duplicate or unused layouts, you may delete them by right-clicking and selecting 'Delete layout.'

  4. Click 'View' again. Then choose the 'Handout master' option.

  5. Review the handout templates of the file. If any handout template contains large graphics, you may compress them.

  6. Delete unwanted handout masters. At this stage of the compression process, remove any unwanted handout masters or graphics assets in the handout templates section.

  7. Click on 'View' and select the 'Notes master' option. Look for large graphics and compress them or delete them if they are unnecessary for the presentation.

Related: 9 PowerPoint Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

2. Compressing a PPT file by reducing the image size

PowerPoint presentations often contain images. This allows you to make a visually pleasing presentation but may result in a larger file size. Using the steps below, you can minimise the size of the presentation by compressing its photos:

  1. Choose an image. Select the image you wish to compress.

  2. Click on the 'Picture format' tab. This makes the menu appear.

  3. Select 'Compress pictures'. This opens the 'Compression options' menu.

  4. Compress selected images in the presentation. If you wish to compress only the image you selected, select the box titled 'Apply only to this picture.'

  5. Consider compressing all images of the presentation. If you wish to compress all images in the presentation, you may uncheck the 'Apply only to this picture' box.

  6. Make adjustments for pictures you may have cropped. If you have cropped an image and want to remove the cropped section, you can check the box labelled 'Delete cropped areas of pictures.'

  7. Try changing the resolution of an image to reduce its size. Under the 'Compression options' menu, there is another menu named 'Resolution' where you can select a new resolution for your image.

  8. Apply your changes by clicking 'OK'. Then you can leave the menu to complete the process.

  9. Check the quality of your images. After you select a new resolution, you can review your images to ensure they have the level of clarity you prefer.

  10. Change the resolution of your images. You can do this by navigating back to the 'Resolution' menu and selecting a higher resolution from the list.

Additionally, it may be good to erase the picture modification data. This can further help reduce the file size of the presentation. Consider the following steps to erase cached editing data:

  1. Look for 'File' in the upper left corner of the screen and click on it.

  2. Find 'Options' at the bottom of the drop-down menu and select it.

  3. Click 'Advanced' to open the advanced options menu.

  4. Locate the option labelled 'Discard editing data' and click to check the box.

  5. Click 'OK' to apply your changes and exit the window.

Related: How To Make A Slideshow In PowerPoint (With Steps And Tips)

3. Compressing a PPT project as a ZIP file

Converting the project into a ZIP file is a useful option for reducing the size of the complete project. This technique may be helpful, especially if your presentation contains media or items you wish to keep together. You can compress your PowerPoint file as a ZIP file by following the steps below:

  1. Click on 'File'. Choose the 'File' tab in the left corner of the main menu.

  2. Choose 'Open'. Look for the 'Open' option and click it.

  3. Right-click on the project you wish to compress. This opens a ribbon with other options.

  4. Select the 'Send to' option. This extends a second ribbon with a few more options.

  5. Find the option labelled 'Compressed (zipped) folder'. Choose this option to compress the complete file.

Related: How To Create A Storyboard In PowerPoint (With Useful Steps)

4. Compressing a PPT file as a PDF

Sometimes, it may be helpful to convert your presentation to PDF format. This may be useful if you intend to publish or share the document in a simplified format. When you convert a project to PDF, PowerPoint removes all audio and video files and reduces the file size. The following steps can help you transform the presentation into a PDF format:

  1. Navigate to 'File'. Locate 'File' in the upper left corner of your screen and click on it.

  2. Click on 'Save as'. Look for the option that says 'Save as' and click on it. This opens a new window.

  3. Type your file name. Type a name for your file in the box labelled 'File name.'

  4. Click the box labelled 'Save as type'. This opens a ribbon with more options.

  5. Save the file as a PDF. Find the option 'PDF (.pdf)' and select it.

  6. Save the file. Click on 'Save' in the bottom right corner of the window to finish saving your file as a PDF.

Related: What Are Presentation Skills? (And How To Improve Them)

5. Compressing a PPT file by reducing the size of media files

The presentation's audio or video elements may significantly increase the overall file size. To decrease the presentation's file size, consider eliminating any redundant media. After that, you can compress the remaining audio and video files in your presentation by following these steps:

  1. Locate the 'File' tab. Navigate to the 'File' tab in the left corner of the menu and click on it to open its drop-down menu.

  2. Select 'Info'. This opens the 'Info' menu.

  3. Click 'Compress media'. This displays three options related to compressing audio and video files.

  4. Select the compression option you prefer. Then you can wait for the program to finish the compression process. When the files finish compressing, click 'Close' in the window's lower right corner.

  5. Review the compressed files. Check your compressed files to determine whether the quality is sufficient for your needs.

  6. Modify the compression setting if required. You may change the settings until your presentation's audio and video files align with your preferences.

Related: How To Start A Presentation (With Tips And Examples)

Important Tips For Compressing PPT Files

Consider the following tips when compressing a PPT file:

Review the image quality

Adding high-quality photos, videos and audio files can enhance the appeal of your PowerPoint presentations. Consider reviewing the quality of the presentation each time you compress it to maintain its clarity. For instance, if you wish to present it on a projector, it may be helpful to test your presentation with one beforehand to confirm your images look clear.

Convert images

You can reduce the file size of your presentation's images by choosing the JPEG format rather than PNG. To accomplish this, right-click on the image you wish to add to your presentation. Then click on 'Save as image'. This opens a new window. Click the drop-down menu beside 'Save as type' and select 'JPEG file format' from that box. Then you can save your image as a JPEG later by clicking 'Save'.

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Use consistent animation

It is often better to use only a few animations across the entire presentation. It also helps to reduce the overall file size. Fewer type of animation means fewer additional animation-related resources PowerPoint adds to your presentation file. Before adding animations across your presentation, you may test some animations on a few slides to shortlist some versatile animation styles which may work appropriately across your presentation.

Related: 9 Essential Animation Skills (Plus How To Improve Them)

Replace 3D assets

PowerPoint allows you to incorporate 3D images in your projects, but it can increase the file size of your presentation. These graphic types may also be difficult to compress. To solve this problem, you may substitute some of all 3D assets with similar 2D JPEG photos.


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