What is Data Visualization?
Data Visualization is the art of sifting through data, combining multiple data sources, and finally getting data ready for the moment of truth when it can be interpreted visually. This art encompasses taking long numeric lists and complicated KPIs, and presenting them in intuitive, easy to understand way.
But there are many approaches and ways to go about Data Visualization. And depending upon the requirements of an enterprise an appropriate choice has to be made. The visualizations need to clarify the information and defaulting to the most common visualization can actually lead to a misinterpretation of data.
Points to Remember
Let’s have a look upon the most important ways of Data Visualization. And also check out when to use them, which data each one of them works best for and how to make it easy to extract insights.
1. Bar Chart
The bar chart is used to compare many items. It typically presents categories or items displayed along the Y axis, with their values displayed on the X axis. The values can also be broken up by another category or group.
2. Line Chart
The line chart is a popular chart because it works well for many business cases, such as comparing data over time to view trends or comparing changes over the same period of time for more than one group or category.
3. Column Chart
The column chart is best used for comparing items and comparing data over time. It can include multiple values on both the X and Y axis, as well as a breakdown by categories displayed on the Y axis. In order to highlight peaks and trends, the column chart can also be combined with a line chart.
If one or two numeric values such as a number, gauge or ticker are required to be displayed in a Data Visualization, the Indicators prove to be of great help. Additional titles and a color-coded indicator icon, such as a green up arrow or a red down arrow can also be added to it, in order to represent the value in a clearer manner.
5. Pivot Table
A Pivot Table is one of the most simple and useful ways to visualize data. Large amounts of data can be quickly summarized and analysed, while additional features such as color formatting and data bars considerably enhance the overall impact.
6. Pie Chart
When proportional data, and/or percentages need to be displayed, the pie chart is best. This way of Data Visualization represents the size relationship between the parts and the entire entity and the parts need to sum to a meaningful whole. Pie may display only six categories to a maximum.
7. Area Chart
The area chart looks similar to a line chart, and the areas under each line inside it are filled in with various colors. Hence, it is possible to display this chart as stacked for better comparison. It is particularly helpful if absolute or relative values stacked over a time period are required to be displayed.
The treemap is a multi-dimensional widget that displays hierarchical data in the form of nested rectangles. It can be used in different scenarios, for example, instead of a column chart when many categories and sub-categories are required to be compared.
9. Area Map
The area map displays data as geographical representation across a region as data points on a map. It may be used to visualize up to two sets of numeric data using circle color and size to represent the value of data.
10. Scatter Chart
If the distribution and relationship of two variables need to be displayed visually, the Scatter Chart proves to be quite helpful. Hence, the circles on the chart represent the categories being compared, and the size or numeric data.
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