Given that Microsoft PowerPoint presentations usually include a lot of visual aids such as images, gifs, embedded videos, charts, and graphs, it’s not unexpected that the resulting file sizes can be quite large. To address this issue, there are several techniques you can use to decrease the size of your presentation files.

Big files can be bothersome since they consume valuable storage space, reduce playback speed, and may result in emails being returned because they exceed the size limit. By reducing the size of your presentation file, you can avoid all these issues.

Don’t Copy and Paste Your Images, Insert Them Instead

While it may be tempting to copy and paste an image directly into a PowerPoint presentation, it’s important to note that doing so may result in a larger file size. If you’re not concerned with file size, this may not be an issue. However, if you’re looking to reduce the size of your presentation, be aware that copying and pasting images may reformat them to BMP or PNG file formats, which are larger than the commonly used JPG format. Therefore, if you want to minimize your file size, it’s best to use the insert function rather than copying and pasting images.

If you copy and paste a JPG file into PowerPoint and it gets converted to PNG format, it will add extra file size to the presentation. As shown in the screenshot above, the same image saved in PNG format is 756KB, while in JPG format, it’s only 128KB. 

This increase in size can be avoided by using the insert function to ensure your images are inserted into the presentation in the intended format.

Use Smaller Image Files

To minimize the size of your PowerPoint files, it’s recommended that you insert images in smaller sizes. When inserting pictures taken at high resolution from a phone, for example, this can lead to larger PowerPoint files. To address this, you can create or send images at a lower resolution and insert them into your PowerPoint files.

When using stock images, select images at the lowest resolution that meets your quality requirements. Additionally, you can open images in an image editing program like Microsoft Picture Manager or Adobe Photoshop and save them at a lower resolution.

In PowerPoint 365, one of the leading contributors to file size bloat are 3D models. Although these are not inserted as pictures, they still count as images. For instance, one 3D model we inserted occupied 17 MB of space. As 3D models cannot be compressed like other image types, you may need to delete them or use pictures instead of 3D models to address file size concerns.

Edit Images in an Image Editor and Not in PowerPoint

If you use PowerPoint to edit an image, the software saves all those edits as part of the presentation, which can result in a larger file size. For instance, if you convert an image to black and white, PowerPoint retains the original full-color version of the image, which takes up additional storage space. Therefore, this can result in the storage of unnecessary bites, leading to larger file sizes for your presentation.

Compress All Images in the PowerPoint

Open your PowerPoint file and head over to the File tab.

Click on Save As and select Browse.

Next to the Save button, click on Tools.

Choose the Compress Pictures option from the drop-down menu.

You have the option to select the resolution type, which is based on PPI (pixels per inch), for the images in your presentation. However, you may notice that the Apply only to this picture option is not available. This is due to the way the tool is accessed, which restricts access to this option.

Once you’re satisfied with your selection, click OK.

Don’t Use Embedded Fonts

When it comes to creating presentations, embedding the fonts can be a useful step to take to ensure that the presentation looks the same on different computers, regardless of whether the fonts used are installed. However, it’s important to keep in mind that embedding fonts can lead to larger file sizes, which may result in slower performance when the presentation is being used.

Head over to the File tab and select Options located at the bottom left-hand pane.

Click on the Save tab and uncheck the box labeled Embed fonts in the file.

Press OK when done.

Save a Copy in PDF Format

To decrease the size of a presentation and share it with others, people frequently save a copy of it as a PDF (portable document format) file. During this process, it is possible to reduce the size of images by compressing them.

Click on the File tab and select Save As.

On the Save As type: select PDF and click on Save.

Reducing the size of PowerPoint presentations can be a daunting task, but it is an essential step to ensure that they are easy to share, open and navigate. Large file sizes can cause slow performance, crashes and issues when sending files through email or file sharing platforms. By implementing these strategies, you can significantly reduce the size of your PowerPoint presentations, improve their performance, and avoid crashes. You will also make it easier to share and store your presentations, which can be especially helpful for those who need to send or access files frequently.

Remember, the key to a successful presentation design is not just the content, but also the delivery, so make sure to take the necessary steps to optimize your files for best performance.