Available chart types - Excel
Mar 20, 5 Questions to Ask When Deciding Which Type of Chart to Use. 1. It is useful for showing part-to-whole relations, such as showing individual. The hard part is getting your mind around which types of chart to use in which situation. Excel has 11 major chart types with variations on each type. range of values as well as show the relationship of the individual sub-items with the whole . Mar 1, Is used to show a relationship between many values. . in percentages, used to visualize a part to whole relationship or a composition.
Tree map You can select the following formats for the chart types: The top of each stack represents the accumulated totals for each category. This format highlights proportions. When actual values are important, use another format. When exact values are important, such as for control or monitoring purposes, use another format. The distortion in three-dimensional charts can make them difficult to read accurately. Column charts Column charts are useful for comparing discrete data or showing trends over time.
Column charts use vertical data markers to compare individual values. Line charts Line charts are useful for showing trends over time and comparing many data series. Line charts plot data at regular points connected by lines. Pie charts Pie charts are useful for highlighting proportions. They use segments of a circle to show the relationship of parts to the whole. To highlight actual values, use another chart type, such as a stacked chart.
Pie charts plot a single data series. If you need to plot multiple data series, use a percent stacked chart. Bar charts Bar charts are useful for plotting many data series.
Bar charts use horizontal data markers to compare individual values. Area charts Area charts are useful for emphasizing the magnitude of change over time. Stacked area charts are also used to show the relationship of parts to the whole. Area charts are like line charts, but the areas below the lines are filled with colors or patterns. Point charts Point charts are useful for showing quantitative data in an uncluttered fashion.
Point charts use multiple points to plot data along an ordinal, or non-numeric, axis. A point chart is the same as a line chart without the lines. Only the data points are shown. Scatter charts Scatter charts are useful for showing relationships between two measures. Scatter charts use colored circles to represent two measures for each dimension.
The x-axis represents one measure, and the y-axis represents a second measure. For example, you create a scatter chart that shows Cost and Revenue by Product. Your scatter chart consists of one circle for each Product. Each Product circle is plotted on the chart based on Cost, on the x-axis, and Revenue, on the y-axis.
Stacked area charts might be colorful and fun, but you should use them with caution, because they can quickly become a mess. Not in data visualization, though. These charts are among the most frequently used and also misused charts. The one on the right is a good example of a terrible, useless pie chart - too many components, very similar values. A pie chart typically represents numbers in percentages, used to visualize a part to whole relationship or a composition.
Pie charts are not meant to compare individual sections to each other or to represent exact values you should use a bar chart for that. When possible, avoid pie charts and donuts. I mean, like, never! You might think that you could use a stacked donut to present composition, while allowing some comparison with an emphasis on compositionbut it would perform badly for both.
Use stacked column charts instead. Make sure that the total sum of all segments equals percent. Ideally, there should be only two categories, like men and women visiting your website, or only one category, like a market share of your company, compared to the whole market.
Scatter Charts Scatter charts are primarily used for correlation and distribution analysis. Scatter charts can also show the data distribution or clustering trends and help you spot anomalies or outliers. A good example of scatter charts would be a chart showing marketing spending vs. Bubble Charts A bubble chart is a great option if you need to add another dimension to a scatter plot chart.
Scatter plots compare two values, but you can add bubble size as the third variable and thus enable comparison.
Available chart types
If the bubbles are very similar in size, use labels. A good example of a bubble chart would be a graph showing marketing expenditures vs. A standard scatter plot might show a positive correlation for marketing costs and revenue obviouslywhen a bubble chart could reveal that an increase in marketing costs is chewing on profits. Use Scatter and Bubble charts to: Present patterns in large sets of data, linear or non-linear trends, correlations, clusters, or outliers.
Compare large number of data points without regard to time. The more data you include in a scatter chart, the better comparisons you can make. Present relationships, but not exact values for comparisons.
Data Visualization – How to Pick the Right Chart Type?
Map Charts Map charts are good for giving your numbers a geographical context to quickly spot best and worst performing areas, trends, and outliers.
If you have any kind of location data like coordinates, country names, state names or abbreviations, or addresses, you can plot related data on a map. A good example would be website visitors by country, state, or city, or product sales by state, region or city. When to use map charts? If you want to display quantitative information on a map. To present spatial relationships and patterns. When a regional context for your data is important.
To get an overview of the distribution across geographic locations. Only if your data is standardized that is, it has the same data format and scale for the whole set. Gantt Charts Gantt charts were adapted by Karol Adamiecki in But the name comes from Henry Gantt who independently adapted this bar chart type much later, in the s. Gantt charts are essentially project maps, illustrating what needs to be done, in what order, and by what deadline. You can visualize the total time a project should take, the resources involved, as well as the order and dependencies of tasks.
8 Types of Excel Charts and Graphs and When to Use Them
But project planning is not the only application for a Gantt chart. It can also be used in rental businesses, displaying a list of items for rent cars, rooms, apartments and their rental periods. To display a Gantt chart, you would typically need, at least, a start date and an end date.
Gauges are a great choice to: Show progress toward a goal. Represent a percentile measure, like a KPI. Show an exact value and meaning of a single measure. Display a single bit of information that can be quickly scanned and understood. The bad side of gauge charts is that they take up a lot of space and typically only show a single point of data.
If there are many gauge charts compared against a single performance scale, a column chart with threshold indicators would be a more effective and compact option. Multi Axes Charts There are times when a simple chart just cannot tell the whole story. If you want to show relationships and compare variables on vastly different scales, the best option might be to have multiple axes. But it comes at a cost. That is, the charts are much more difficult to read and understand.
Multi-axes charts might be good for presenting common trends, correlations or the lack thereof and the relationships between several data sets. But multi-axes charts are not good for exact comparisons because of different scales and you should not use this type if you need to show exact values.
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Use multi-axes charts if you want to: Display a line chart and a column chart with the same X-axis. Compare multiple measures with different value ranges. Illustrate the relationships, correlation, or the lack thereof between two or more measures in one visualization.
Save canvas space if the chart does not become too complicated. When using time in charts, set it on the horizontal axis. Time should run from left to right. Do not skip values time periodseven if there are no values.
The numbers in a chart displayed as bar, area, bubble, or other physically measured element in the chart should be directly proportional to the numerical quantities presented. Remove any excess information, lines, colors, and text from a chart that does not add value. More about data-Ink ratio Sorting.
For column and bar charts, to enable easier comparison, sort your data in ascending or descending order by the value, not alphabetically. This applies also to pie charts. Use labels directly on the line, column, bar, pie, etc. When using monetary values in a long-term series, make sure to adjust for inflation. For comparing the same value at different time periods, use the same color in a different intensity from light to dark. For different categories, use different colors. The most widely used colors are black, white, red, green, blue, and yellow.
Keep the same color palette or style for all charts in the series, and same axes and labels for similar charts to make your charts consistent and easy to compare. Check how your charts would look when printed out in grayscale. If you cannot distinguish color differences, you should change hue and saturation of colors. Seven to 10 percent of men have color deficiency.
Keep that in mind when creating charts, ensuring they are readable for color-blind people. Use Vischeck to test your images.
Or, try to use color palettes that are friendly to color-blind people.