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10-minute presentation: how many slides do you need

The organizers have told you: You only have 10 minutes to pitch. You need to make a brilliant presentation. How many slides should there be?  Which is better with many or few slides?  

The Wonderslide team researched presentations for speeches and concluded that the quality of the presentation was not dependent on the number of slides. 

10-minute presentation: how many slides do you need

Slides for a 10-minute presentation

However, is there a golden number, and how do you calculate it?

Here are a few tricks.

  1. A 10-minute presentation at average speaking speed usually consists of 1.5 thousand words.  
  2. You show one slide for 30 seconds to 1 minute. In a speech, this amounts to about 100-150 words. 
  3. You don’t read the slide like a book out loud. If there is a lot of information on a slide, divide it into two or three. Keep in mind the total time.
  4. The longer you show one slide, the faster the attention span of the audience decreases. 3-4 slides for 10 minutes is too short.
  5. Most often, speakers use 10-12 slides. But there can be more if the slides are not overloaded with information, show examples, and contain 1-2 photos.

Also, we noticed that in excellent presentations the authors do not indicate the number of the slide, but always put a title for each slide.

Immediately refuse video and slides with a lot of digits in such a short speech. Highlight the main point, and reveal the main idea of the first slides. If you don’t have time to show the whole presentation, you’d rather skip the less important details. Do not sacrifice the slide with contacts. Keep in mind that it will translate into a series of “Q&As,” if there are any.

Before the presentation, don’t forget to rehearse and measure the time. That way you’ll know which slides you can drop or, on the contrary, add. Invite colleagues or friends to listen to you and give you feedback. 

Use Wonderslide.com if you need to design a slideshow quickly.

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