Half the battle when it comes to data delivery is delivering a solution that is clear, concise and easy to understand. In the following post, we’ll share some quick tips to ensure your visualizations are easily interpreted in order to promote effective understanding of the data presented.
To begin, pay particular attention to axes in charts as these disproportionately contribute to misunderstanding. Don’t distort reality, if several metrics contain the same type of data, add them to one single axis to show a realistic comparison. This will enable you to effectively display the proportional difference between them.
In most cases, it is beneficial to configure the axis to start at zero for the sake of maintaining an accurate and recognizable representation. This way, minuscule differences will not appear larger than they really are.
In certain circumstances, using truncated graphs, those for which the axis does not start at 0, is justified to emphasize the difference between variables. When using such a presentation, however, you might consider adding a side note to highlight the non-conventional axis representation and aid interpretation.
To further understand and aid data consumption, be sure to include information on where your data is coming from, how it has been calculated and how users should interpret the results. This can be included in a dashboard glossary or directly embedded in tools tips or slide-out detail views next to the relevant visualization.
Would you like to see more quick tips on how to deliver clear data visualizations? Comment below and let us know the struggles you’ve been facing in your marketing dashboard.
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