Big data is everywhere, and as a result, visualization tools are in high demand. Data visualization allows you to easily spot trends and patterns that might otherwise go unnoticed.
The problem is there are so many different tools out there, so selecting the right one for your business can be challenging. If you’re looking for the best data visualization tool for your business, this guide will help you find it.
In this article, we’ll explore 15 of the top tools on the market along with examples of each to help you narrow down your options and make an informed decision.
What Is Data Visualization? Data visualization is a way to convey information using visual elements like charts, graphs and maps.
The purpose is to take large amounts of data and present it in a way that’s easy to understand at a glance. It’s also an excellent way to communicate key messages across entire organizations.
Why Is Data Visualization Important? Data visualization is an essential part of any successful business strategy because it makes it easier for employees, clients and shareholders to understand complex data sets quickly.
Effective data visualization allows you to better track progress toward goals, make smarter decisions based on real-time information and give team members actionable insights into their performance.
Best Data Visualization Tools
What Are Data Visualization Tools
Data visualization is one of the most important skillsets of data science. It’s a key part of what makes big data so powerful, and it has a huge impact on everything from marketing to product development.
Data visualization is only going to become more important in the years ahead. The amount of data being collected every day is increasing at an exponential rate, and it’s becoming harder and harder for humans to process all that information.
That’s why it’s so important for companies to use tools like Tableau or QlikView to visualize their data in order to make sense of it all and gain insight into where they need to devote resources.
Here are some simple tips for getting started with data visualizations:
Data Visualization Tools – Introduction
Data visualization tools are a type of graphic and information representation that has the purpose of presenting data in a way that is easier to understand. They often include options to filter, sort, and compare data, as well as display it in a number of ways.
Their main purpose is to make analyzing large amounts of data much easier by reducing it to a visual representation that is not only easier for the brain to process, but also more engaging and interesting. Data visualization tools have become incredibly popular over the years, particularly with the advent of big data and its role in business.
As such, there are now many different types of tools available for different industries and purposes.
Some examples include:
Dashboards – these have become very popular as they display information from multiple sources in one place, usually with interactive elements like graphs or charts.
They’ve become so popular in fact that some refer to them as “the new spreadsheets”!
Data Visualization Tools for Big Data – these are similar to dashboards but instead deal with big data specifically. This means they can handle massive amounts of data at once, including unstructured and real-time data.
What Are the Best Data Visualization Tools?
Data visualization is the secret to good analytics. It’s easy to get lost in data, and it’s easy for it to look like a jumbled mess. Visualization is the key to making sense of it all.
But what tools should you use? There are plenty of options out there, and they vary widely in complexity and price.
The right choice will depend on your experience, what you want to accomplish, and how much time you want to spend on it.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of the best data visualization tools available today, along with their relative strengths and weaknesses.
This is where most people start, and there’s a good reason for that — Excel is easy to learn and has a lot of power.
It comes with many built-in templates for common types of visualizations, including line graphs, column charts and bubble diagrams. Best of all: Anyone can get it for free by signing up for Microsoft 365 Personal or Family.
For basic purposes like creating bar charts or heat maps, Excel can be totally sufficient.
1. Zoho Analytics
Zoho Analytics is an online business intelligence (BI) and analytics platform to understand your business data better and make informed decisions. It allows you to transform your data into insights by creating interactive visualizations, intuitive dashboards, insightful reports, and engaging stories.
Zoho Analytics also helps you share your insights with others and collaborate on data analysis by allowing them to comment or edit the reports/dashboards. Zoho Analytics also comes with a mobile app that enables you to access your reports/dashboards in a mobile device, anytime, anywhere.
Integrate Zoho Analytics with other popular apps like Gmail, MailChimp, Google Drive, Google Calendar, Outlook, Salesforce etc., to get a unified view of your business data from all these applications. You can also integrate your databases like MySQL or any database that supports ODBC connection or JDBC connection.
- Zoho Analytics for Salesforce
– Track your sales performance and visualize it on Zoho Analytics dashboards within Salesforce itself.
- Zoho Analytics for MailChimp
– Track the performance of your email campaigns in real time and improve the quality of leads generated from them.
- Easy to use BI and reporting tool. Powerful data ingestion, modeling and enrichment.
- Drag-and-drop report builder with multiple visualization options.
- Collaborate on reports through comments and annotations.
- Predictive analytics with machine learning models.
- Embedded dashboards in Web and Mobile Apps.
- Powerful embeddable charts in your website or blog.
There are a few features of Zoho Analytics that make it stand out in comparison to other options.
- Zoho Analytics offers a comprehensive, cloud-based data warehouse. There is no limit on the number of users, databases or queries with the unlimited plan.
- Zoho Analytics is an extremely affordable solution for businesses.
Zoho Analytics is a self-service business intelligence and analytics software which helps you create dashboards and analyze data. Sign up free.
It’s not just for ecommerce. Databox was created to help businesses of all sizes measure the impact of their marketing and sales efforts across the entire company.
Gaining visibility into what is working (and what isn’t) is critical to improving your results and growing your business. One place to track everything that matters.
Databox makes it easy to see and share the data you need to make better decisions.
Databox transforms your business data into insights that lead to action. Transform all your KPI’s into a single business dashboard and get the insights you need to grow your business.
Databox is the easiest way to track, visualize and share your key performance indicators.
Connect to over 50+ data sources, create unlimited custom metrics and build dashboards that matter to you and your team.
Analytics Integration: We offer integrations with all the major analytics, marketing, and sales platforms — Google Analytics, Facebook, HubSpot, MailChimp, Salesforce, and many more.
Custom Data Sources: In addition to our native Google Analytics integration, we also support custom data sources that can include any data that can be pulled into a CSV file or spreadsheet.
In this way, you can track almost any metric you want including CRM reports, accounting reports, JSON files and more.
Data Cleaning: Using our custom formulas feature, you can clean your data before it is displayed in your dashboard in order to remove unnecessary decimal places or add additional calculations.
You can also use this feature to calculate the difference between two numbers or percentage change over time.
Data Visualization: Databox offers a number of visualization options including line charts, column charts (both stacked and unstacked), pie charts and more. You can combine these types of visualizations within a single chart view as well as create multiple chart views within a single Metric.
1. You can integrate with any data source. This means you can collect all the data you need to monitor your marketing performance in one place, rather than having to jump between different analytics platforms.
2. The interface is user-friendly and very easy to navigate. You can add as many metrics as you want and still have a clean dashboard.
3. You can easily customize the dashboards that you create. You can also share them with your team or clients using a private link.
4. You Can Integrate With Any Data Source. Databox allows you to integrate 100+ data sources, so you are not limited to tracking only Google Analytics and Facebook Ads. For example, you can connect your email marketing tool, Hubspot CRM, and even your accounting software.
This means that you don’t have to waste time jumping from one platform to another just to review your marketing performance. You get all the data that you need in one place.
5. The Interface Is User-Friendly And Very Easy To Navigate Even if you want to add as many metrics as possible on your dashboard, it will remain clean and uncluttered because of the way the widgets are designed.
Databox is a cloud-based business analytics platform for marketers, CEOs, analysts and decision makers that provides a single interface to view various key performance indicators (KPIs) and generate reports.
Tableau is a business intelligence software that allows anyone to connect to data, then visualize and create interactive, sharable dashboards. It’s easy enough that any Excel user can learn it, flexible enough to handle any amount of data, scalable enough to fit the needs of any organization, and powerful enough to analyze anything.
Tableau is a tool for everyone. It’s powerful without being complicated. It’s not just for analysts or techies anymore.
You don’t have to be a statistician or computer programmer. You don’t have to be an expert at writing SQL queries. You don’t need a degree in math or statistics
The Tableau product family starts with Tableau Desktop and Tableau Prep Builder, which are designed for individual use. When you want to share your work with others, you can publish it to Tableau Server or Tableau Online (cloud-based Tableau Server).
Tableau Desktop and Tableau Prep Builder allow you to connect directly to data stored on your computer or on a network drive (Local), or in the cloud (Cloud). When you publish your workbooks and data sources from these products to either of the two server products, you can share them securely with other people.
Tableau Desktop – This is a data analysis product, used by analysts to connect to files or databases and then analyze the data using common charts and graphs.
Tableau Server – Used by organizations to share Tableau Desktop visualizations over the internet, this product allows for publishing of visualizations for others to see, as well as scheduling automatic updates of the data behind those visualizations.
Tableau Online – Similar to Tableau Server but hosted in the cloud by Tableau, it allows organizations without IT departments or IT resources to share Tableau Desktop visualizations.
Tableau Reader – A free tool which allows users to read Tableau Desktop visualizations saved in .tde format.
Tableau Public – Also free, this tool is used by individuals to publish public data online in an interactive format.
Tableau is a great tool. It offers a wide array of functionality, and it is easy to use and learn. This post will highlight some aspects of Tableau that are particularly useful to me.
The ability to blend data in Tableau is a huge reason why I love it. The ability to blend on anything is invaluable.
It lets me combine data from multiple sources into one visualization. In my case, this can be useful for combining survey responses from Qualtrics or Survey Monkey with demographic data from the Census API.
Joining is another neat feature that Tableau has. Although most of the time I prefer blending, joining is sometimes easier than setting up a data blend, especially if there are only 2 sources of data involved and one of the sources does not change very often (for instance, if you have survey responses from Qualtrics and an Excel file with demographic info about the survey respondents).
Tableau allows for the creation of calculated fields based on other fields in your data set, as well as custom formulas (in addition to being able to summarize by any measure). To add more flexibility, calculations can be nested within each other.
Tableau is an interactive, self-service reporting and analytics tool that enables faculty and staff to integrate and combine data from multiple sources into visualizations and be accessed in a single Creator environment using Tableau Creator or through a shared dashboard.
Infogram is a visualization platform that allows anyone to easily create charts, graphs and infographics. Create professional charts, maps and infographics in minutes.
With Infogram, you can create beautiful charts and infographics with the help of over 400 interactive maps, 70 chart types and easy-to-use templates.
Infogram provides a wide range of options for creating charts, maps, and infographics in minutes. You can also use our editor to upload and customize your own design or take advantage of one of our infographic templates.
Charts, graphs, and maps
We offer a variety of different chart types to meet every need: bar graph, line graph, pie chart, area graph, stacked column, Venn diagram and more. All are custom-designed by professional designers to make your presentation stand out.
Create interactive presentations with Infogram in minutes. Make them embedded and shareable or download as a PDF file.
Use the Infogram editor to create beautiful infographics that combine images, text and charts into an eye-catching design. Or choose from hundreds of infographic templates that are ready to customize and go.
- Create and edit charts and maps with additional customization options
- Consolidate all their charts under one account
- Get access to more data sources
- Make their charts private when embedding them on a website or blog
- Upload custom maps, images, and logos Access more fonts, templates, colors and themes
- Post unlimited posts to social media channels (Facebook, Twitter) directly from Infogram.
Infogram helps anyone create and share beautiful charts, maps, infographics, reports and presentations.
ChartBlocks is a lovely tool for creating charts and graphs on the fly, and any reasonably-experienced designer can get up to speed with it in less than an hour. The interface is straightforward and intuitive; once you’ve signed up for a free account (or paid one) you’re up and running.
You don’t need to install anything there’s no Flash or Java involved; everything runs in your browser. You can choose from a number of different chart types, including line, area, column and bubble charts.
There are also more specialist chart types such as sunburst, Venn diagrams and treemaps. Your data can be imported from Google Spreadsheets or Excel files; simply drag your files onto the interface to import data.
Alternatively, you can type it out directly into the ChartBlocks interface (in which case you might want to keep a backup of your work saved locally). You can preview your data at any time by clicking the Preview tab.
This can be especially useful if you’re working with large datasets that might be causing performance issues.
Unleash your creativity with our easy-to-use tool for creating charts. Our drag and drop interface gives you complete control over how your charts look and function. Choose from the best chart types. Our clean, modern design lets you pick from bar, line, area, pie and scatter charts. You can also create your own custom chart type with our tools.
Import data from anywhere.
You can import data directly from Excel or Google Spreadsheets or upload a CSV or TSV file to create a chart. You can also import data directly from an API or database query via our DataSet system.
Bring your data to life with animation and interactivity.
Add beautiful animations to your charts just by ticking a box. You can also add interactive features like tooltips and data tables allowing users to explore your data in more detail.
- User friendly Easy to use and easy to share.
- Affordable Costs a fraction of the price of other services.
- Unlimited data sets
- Add as many data sets as you like, with no restrictions on the size of your data.
- Customizable charts
Chartblocks is a data visualization software that features a simple yet efficient dashboard with easy-to-use controls.
If you want to visualize data, Datawrapper is the tool for you. All it takes is a few clicks to create a line chart or bar graph and publish it on any platform.
Datawrapper is a tool specifically designed to make the process of creating charts and maps as simple as possible. It is an open tool, and you can use it for free on the web.
Tables Highlight and compare values in a table
A great way to show data in rows and columns. Tables are good for showing a lot of numbers, especially when you want to highlight certain rows or columns.
They’re also good for highlighting differences between your data.
The most popular chart type: Bar charts are simple and easy to understand.
Bar charts are the most common chart type. People easily understand how different bars compare to each other.
That’s why they’re the best choice if you want to show the relationship between different categories of data.
Show trends over time with line charts Line charts can show a trend over time (or over any other category you have).
They work best when there’s a big difference between each value. Some examples: Number of people using your product, stock prices, temperature changes, birthrates, or the number of items sold per day/week/month/year.
Show the distribution of one category with pie charts. Pie charts are best used to show how much each group (or major part) contributes to an amount.
For example, you can use pie charts to display how different categories of products contributed to total sales last year.
- It is easy to use, and with some practice, I can make a great looking chart in minutes.You can upload data in multiple formats and can analyze your data right on the website.
- Great support resources and intuitive user interface. The charts are responsive and look great while being shared via social media or emails.
- You can add charts to your website directly using the embed code (You don’t have to be a programmer). It has a built-in functionality to share your chart online easily.
Datawrapper is a data compilation and visualization software that simplifies how you can present large numbers of data.
Plotly is a free and open-source graphing library for Python. Python has a number of powerful plotting libraries to choose from.
Online and offline plotting
You can use Plotly’s python API to plot inside your Jupyter Notebook by calling plotly.plotly.iplot() or plotly.offline.plot().
Embedding Maps & Graphs in RMarkdown
We have an R package for working with Plotly’s R API.
Embedding Maps & Graphs in IPython Notebooks
IPython notebooks are great for interactive exploration, but they’re not the best choice when it comes to presentation or sharing your work.
- Plotly Express is a terse, consistent, high-level wrapper around Plotly.py that exposes a simple syntax for complex charts.
- The chart-studio package can be used to upload plotly figures to Plotly’s Chart Studio Cloud or On-Prem services.
- Plotly.py is a separate library than plotly which provides an interactive graphing library for Python.
- It is built on top of d3.js and plotly.js and can be used to create many different types of visualization including statistical charts, 3D graphs and more! This library can be installed with pip: pip install plotly .
- Plotly provides online graphing, analytics, and statistics tools for individuals and collaboration, as well as scientific graphing libraries for Python , R , MATLAB , Perl , Julia , Arduino , and REST .
Plotly is a Montreal based technical computing company involved in development of data analytics and visualisation tools such as Dash and Chart Studio.
Visually is the easiest, most beautiful way to create and share powerful visuals. Create and market visual content that tells your brand story and increases audience engagement across devices.
Easy to access: Visually is integrated with all major social media platforms and has a mobile app. This makes it very easy to access and share visually right from your phone.
Great tools: Visually has a variety of tools that make the creating process much easier including a storyboarding tool, inspiration boards, drag and drop design tool, and a content calendar.
Tons of templates: Visually has thousands of templates. This means you can find exactly what you’re looking for and then simply swap in your own photos/logo to customize it.
High quality images: Visually has a huge library of images to choose from and high quality photographers.
You can also request specific images for your project if you don’t find what you’re looking for in the library.
Large community: With over 100,000 creators on Visually all around the world, there are plenty of options for finding the right person to create what you need.
Visualize Free is a free visual analysis tool from InetSoft. No software to install. Upload a dataset and create a visualization on your data in minutes.
D3 allows you to bind arbitrary data to a Document Object Model (DOM), and then apply data-driven transformations to the document. For example, you can use D3 to generate an HTML table from an array of numbers.
Or, use the same data to create an interactive SVG bar chart with smooth transitions and interaction. D3 is not a monolithic framework that seeks to provide every conceivable feature. Instead, D3 solves the crux of the problem: efficient manipulation of documents based on data.
This avoids proprietary representation and affords extraordinary flexibility, exposing the full capabilities of web standards such as CSS3 and HTML5. With minimal overhead, D3 is extremely fast, supporting large datasets and dynamic behaviors for interaction and animation. D3’s functional style allows code reuse through a diverse collection of official and third party components.
- D3.js is easy to learn
- D3.js can handle large datasets easily
- D3.js has a feature of dynamic property which allows you to execute data-driven transformation on a web page
10. Ember Charts
Ember Charts is a charting library built with the Ember.js and d3.js frameworks. It includes time series, bar, pie, and scatter charts which are easy to extend and modify.
Ember Charts is a charting library built with the Ember.js and d3.js frameworks. It includes time series, bar, pie, and scatter charts which are easy to extend and modify.
The out-of-the-box behavior these chart components represents our thoughts on best practices in chart interactivity and presentation.
Ember Charts is designed to be customized: all the details can be changed by passing in a new options object when creating the chart. If you’re looking for something different, it’s easy to make changes:
Every component has options that customize its appearance and behavior in-depth.
- It includes time series, bar, pie, and scatter charts which are easy to extend and modify
- The out-of-the-box behavior these chart components represents our thoughts on best practices in chart interactivity and presentation
- The charts are easily customizable using CSS. Ember Charts is based on the excellent work done by the D3.js community, including Mike Bostock’s D3.js and nvD3.js
Ember Charts is a charting library built with the Ember.js and d3.js frameworks. It includes time series, bar, pie, and scatter charts which are easy to extend and modify.
NVD3 is a data visualization library, and is used to create the charts you see on this website. NVD3 uses d3.js under the hood, and provides an intuitive interface for creating reusable charts and components.
If you’re not familiar with d3.js, it’s best to first check out our simple bar chart example and then take a look at the complex bar chart. If you’re familiar with D3, you won’t have any trouble using NVD3 in your next project.
The library also uses nvd3-community for commonly used chart types (such as linePlusBarChart) that are not included in the main library (lineWithFocusChart). This project is an attempt to build re-usable charts and chart components for d3.js without taking away the power that d3.js gives you.
This is a very young collection of components, with the goal of keeping these components very customizeable, staying away from your standard cookie cutter solutions. Built on top of d3.js and stack.gl, Plotly.js is a high-level, declarative charting library. plotly.js ships with over 30 chart types, including scientific charts, 3D graphs, statistical charts, SVG maps, financial charts, and more.
The NVD3 library is amazing and super flexible. Here are some of the features you can use:
- Reusable charts
- Animated transitions
- Multiple X,Y axes
- Canvas and SVG Rendering
- Chart types: Line, Bar, Stacked Area, Pie, Donut and Scatter Plots
- Date formatting on the time scale
- Customizable tooltips (HTML)
- Mouseover highlights
- Zoomable area
- Reusable charts
- Smooth transitions
- Customizable styles
- Easy to integrate with other libraries like Angular and React NVD3
Despite the pros mentioned above, there are also some cons to NVD3. Here are a few common issues you’ll encounter when working with NVD3:
- Difficult to customize and style certain chart components (e.g., tooltips, axis labels) out of the box. This means more time spent trying to figure out how these components work so you can customize them.
- You can always refer to the documentation, but it’s not very extensive in some areas. I found myself looking for answers on Stack Overflow more often than I would have liked.
12. Google Charts
Google Charts provide a perfect way to visualize data on your website. From simple line charts to complex hierarchical tree maps, the chart gallery provides a large number of ready-to-use chart types.
Then, later in the web page, you create a <div> with that id to display the Google Chart.
- It is an open source tool. It is very easy to learn and use.
- Very interactive, user can change the graphs without reloading the page.
- Google Charts supports a wide range of charts like bar charts, line charts etc.
- It has a large collection of charts and maps.
Google Charts is a cloud-based business intelligence solution designed to help teams visualize data on their websites in the form of pictographs, pie charts, histograms and more.
FusionCharts is the industry leader in enterprise-grade data visualization products. At its core is FusionCharts Suite XT—the most comprehensive charting library available with over 90+ charts and 1000+ maps.
FusionCharts Suite has been used consistently by over 10 million developers across 118 countries for the past 12 years.
Why Choose FusionCharts?
Faster Adoption: With a single line of code & smart defaults, FusionCharts offers faster chart adoption than any other solution.
Chart Types: Supports over 9+ chart types ranging from line to financial charts. Plus it comes with 1000+ maps and microcharts for real-time monitoring Interactivity: Users can interact with the charts in various ways.
Powerful & Lightweight
Moreover, it also supports 3D & 2D animations along with a drag-and-drop editor to make customized charts.
Interactive & Responsive
It renders fast and smoothly on all browsers including IE6 and mobile devices like iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows Phone and tablets.
The charts are highly interactive and support zooming, panning & real-time updates. It offers a range of features such as time navigator (for supporting time series data), annotations (to annotate events on web pages) & real-time updates (to stream live data).
Data Driven Dashboards
FusionWidgets XT allows you to take your dashboards to the next level by providing conditional formatting options on your dashboard gauges. This allows you to create stunning dashboards
- Multiple types of charts
- Easy to use Customizable
It works in all modern mobile and desktop browsers including the iPhone/iPad and Internet Explorer from version 6. Standard browsers use the Canvas element and in some cases SVG for the graphics rendering. In Internet Explorer graphics are drawn using VML.
Highcharts is free for personal learning, school projects and non-profit organizations. For commercial sites we offer Highcharts with free support and updates for one year.
Highcharts provides a wide variety of charts. The following chart types are available:
- Area Chart
- Bubble Chart
- Column Chart
- Donut Chart
- Gauge Chart
- Line Chart
- Pie Chart
- Scatter Plot
- It works in all modern mobile and desktop browsers including the iPhone/iPad and Internet Explorer from version 6. Standard browsers use SVG for the graphics rendering. In legacy Internet Explorer graphics are drawn using VML.
- Highcharts is only free for non-commercial use and as such you will need to buy a license if you intend to use it in a commercial product. License fees start at $80 for a single application installation within your company or $400 for unlimited installations within your company.
It weighs just about 38 KB of JS, and that’s because it is light and fast. The biggest advantage of this library is that you don’t have to worry about which browser is the visitor using; the chart will be rendered in all browsers.
To get started with the Chart.js library, first include the library after including its dependencies.
The library can be downloaded in two formats:
- Minified version: chart.min.js (5KB when gzipped)
- Development version: chart.js (74KB when unminified) The minified version is designed for production and should always be used in a live site because it has been compressed and optimized for speed and size.
The development version is meant to be used during development and debugging, as it is not compressed or optimized. To install Chart.js, add a script tag to the <head> of your HTML page that points to the location of the downloaded Chart.js file on your server like so:
It’s easy to get started with Chart.js. All that’s required is the script included in your page along with a single <canvas> node to render the chart.
If you don’t see anything displayed, don’t panic! It just means there isn’t any data yet.
Chart.Js is a way to include animated, interactive graphs on the website for free. Chart.Js Details. Website.
Leaflet is designed with simplicity, performance and usability in mind.
It works efficiently across all major desktop and mobile platforms out of the box, taking advantage of HTML5 and CSS3 on modern browsers while still being accessible on older ones. It can be extended with a huge amount of plugins, has a beautiful, easy to use and well-documented API and a simple, readable source code that is a joy to contribute to.
Leaflet is a highly modular library, meaning that new features can be added relatively easily.
This makes it easy to develop new extensions and write plugins to support different data providers. Plugins are available for many application frameworks, including Django.
Leaflet offers support for tile layers, markers, popups, polygons and more while being lightweight, simple to use and easy to customize. There’s a plugin for every need; from MarkerCluster, an excellent resource for showing large amounts of data on your map efficiently; to Leaflet Draw which allows users to draw shapes on the map.
Leaflet works efficiently across all major desktop and mobile platforms out of the box with tons of examples when you need start creating your own maps.
- A lot of plugins
- Light weight (only 33kB gzipped)
- Flexible and easy to extend
- No dependencies (other than a modern browser)
- Support for mobile devices Free and open source (BSD license)
What is Data Visualization?
Data visualization refers to the graphical representation of information and data. By using visual elements like charts, graphs, and maps, data visualization tools provide an accessible way to see and understand trends, outliers, and patterns in data.
In features like trend lines and histograms, they make relationships between data points easier to understand. In features like heat maps, they make it easier to find patterns within complex sets of data.
Data visualization is a general term that describes any effort to help people understand the significance of data by placing it in a visual context. Patterns, trends and correlations that might go undetected in text-based data can be exposed and recognized faster with data visualization software.
Business intelligence (BI) platforms like Tableau, Microsoft Power BI, Looker and Qlik are popular examples of tools that specialize in this. These platforms provide easy-to-use methods for turning raw data into useful visuals that reveal insights about customers or products.
Data visualization is often confused with information graphics or information visualization. While these terms are sometimes used interchangeably, they actually have distinct meanings.
Information graphics are graphic visual representations of information; these include charts, maps, diagrams and other visual forms that convey information.
How Do You Use Data Visualization Tools?
There are a lot of data visualization tools out there. But how do you know which one is right for your business?
For one thing, it depends on what kind of data you want to visualize: unstructured, semi-structured or structured.
If you’re just starting out in the big data world, you may not know the difference, so let’s define those terms first.
Unstructured data is the most basic type of data. It’s basically information that has no structure or organization.
For example, a Word document is unstructured because it’s not organized according to any schema. It’s just a bunch of words strung together. So is an email, a Facebook post and any other free-form text message.
This type of data has some structure because it’s organized according to tags (for example, XML or JSON). These tags make it easier to search and filter through this kind of data than if you were looking at a jumble of unstructured information.
Semi-structured data also includes metadata (data that describes other data) and annotations (notes about the content). Structured This type of data has been formatted according to predefined schema (a
1. Using Data Visualization Tools Column Charts
Column charts illustrate values over time or compare values across categories. Column charts are useful for comparing data and determining whether a target has been met.
They can be used to visually rank data and show values clearly. They can be used to compare multiple items at once, making them ideal for displaying information from surveys.
The horizontal axis can display intervals of time, which makes them useful for tracking performance over time.
When to use a column chart: To compare discrete data To track changes over time (a variation called a “stacked column chart” is useful for showing the total of combined data) Column charts are useful for showing data changes over a period of time or for illustrating comparisons among items.
Column charts display vertical bars going across the chart horizontally, with the values axis being displayed on the left side of the chart. By default, column charts show horizontal gridlines for each tick / value on the y-axis, and no vertical gridlines.
There are many variations of column charts that you can make in Excel, including clustered columns, stacked columns, and 100% stacked columns.
2. Using Data Visualization Tools Bar Chart
A bar chart is an essential tool for any data analyst. It’s a simple, quick and effective way to show a distribution of categorical data.
The good news is that there are many different variations of the bar chart and they are all extremely easy to make using Excel.
3. Using Data Visualization Tools Pie Chart
Data visualization is a form of visual communication that lets you see what’s happening in your business. It presents a whole new way to look at data to uncover hidden insights and make better decisions.
Data visualization can help you understand what your data means, discover important relationships between variables and get answers more easily than wading through spreadsheets and reports. Let’s say you’re the owner of a small business.
The only way to know how well your business is doing is to analyze your sales data. So every day, you pull up the sales report with all the numbers in rows and columns and read through it carefully.
But if there’s a problem, would you be able to find it? There are so many numbers, so many rows — how do you know where the problem is?
Visualization tools let you look at data in an entirely new way by depicting information graphically as charts, graphs or maps. Visualization tools make it easier for you to understand what’s happening in your business.
They give you immediate insight into where the problem lies, so you can take action immediately and get on with running your business.
4. Using Data Visualization Tools Venn Diagrams
It’s important to remember that data visualization tools are not one size fits all. There is a right tool for the right job.
A Venn diagram is a good fit when you need to communicate an idea or concept, but not necessarily any specific data.
The diagram allows for multiple groups, with the overlap of each group illustrated by the intersection of circles. Each circle represents a set, or different type of data.
For example, if you wanted to visualize your customers, you could have a set of customers who have purchased your product in the past and another set of customers who are currently subscribed to your service.
The overlap between these two sets would represent customers who have purchased your product in the past and who are currently subscribed to your service. This overlap can help you identify the best group to target with future marketing campaigns based on their shared characteristics.
5. Using Data Visualization Tools Gantt Charts
Gantt chart is a way of visualizing how your project will progress over time. It includes the tasks you’re planning to complete, and indicates their start and end dates.
It can also be used to show which of your resources are assigned to which tasks, as well as overlapping schedules. The Gantt chart is probably the best known type of data visualization tool.
A Gantt chart can be used for anything from documenting an entire project schedule, to tracking the progress of a single task within a larger project. It can also be used at any level in an organization: by individuals trying to manage their own work; by small teams working on a common goal; or as part of a company-wide project management system.
One thing that all Gantt charts have in common is that they are visual representations of scheduled activities. When you look at one, you should be able to see what’s going on with the project at a glance.
6. Using Data Visualization Tools Line Charts
Line charts are used for visualizing trends and patterns in data over time. They can be used to display multiple variables, as long as these variables share a common time scale.
For example, you could use a line chart to compare the daily sales of two restaurants, or plot the daily stock prices for Amazon, Apple and Netflix. Line charts are one of the most basic and common types of data visualization tools.
They’re easy to understand and interpret, which makes them very popular with decision makers who don’t have much time to study charts. Even when dealing with more complex datasets, line charts can be used to show an overall trend.
A line chart can have multiple lines or series of data plotted on it. Each variable is given its own line, plotted against a shared time axis that makes it easy to compare values.
Line charts can also display multiple variables at once by using color or different shades of gray to distinguish between the various series in the chart. A line chart can be created using several different types of data visualization tool (e.g., Excel, Google Sheets) or programming languages (e.g., R and Python).
7. Using Data Visualization Tools Dashboard
There are many reasons why you might want to use a data visualization tool. You can quickly create a data visualization tool for various types of data such as financial, sales, customer, market, or operational.
It is an effective way to visually display and analyze your data in a format that is easily understood by everyone on your team. A dashboard is a user interface that allows you to interact with an application, website or operating system.
The dashboard brings all the information together in one place so you can access it easily.
The following are just some of the tools that can be used to create a data visualization dashboard:
1. Microsoft Excel – Most people use Microsoft Excel to keep track of their data.
It has several built-in functions that allow you to easily visualize your data without any additional software or coding knowledge required.
It allows you to create charts and graphs with many customization options such as colors, fonts and more.
3. Google Charts – Google charts are free charts created using Google’s open source library called Google Visualization API.
These charts have a variety of different styles including bar graphs, pie charts and line graphs among others!
What Should You Look for in Data Visualization Tools?
As with any technology, your data visualization tool should be a natural extension of your work rather than an obstacle to it. You have to live with these tools day in and day out, and you don’t want to hate your job.
So if you’re looking at a new data visualization tool for your company, here are some things to look for:
- It’s intuitive. The best data visualization tools are so intuitive that they need minimal training.
- You should be able to dive right in and easily figure out how to use the tool. If you spend more time learning how to use the tool than you do actually using it, then it’s not a good fit.
- It’s powerful without being overwhelming. A good data visualization tool doesn’t give you so many options that you feel paralyzed by choice or so few options that you feel limited in what you can do creatively.
- The best tools provide powerful functionality but also structure that functionality into logical groups, making the available options easy to understand and implement efficiently. You shouldn’t have to wade through endless drop-down menus or read the manual from cover to cover just because you want to get something done in a hurry.
1. Data Visualization Tools Easy to Embed
Here are some of the data visualization tools that are easy to implement, and offer engaging ways to visualize data.
- Chartist Chartist is a simple responsive charting library built with SVG. Chartist works with inline-SVG and therefore leverages the power of the DOM to provide parts of its functionality. This also means we don’t have any dependencies like jQuery or PrototypeJS and it should run on all browsers where SVG is supported (yes even IE9).
2. Data Visualization Tools User Friendliness
Data visualization is useful when you want to show and explain your data in a simple and clear way. We are all aware that the human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that visual representation of data is so popular nowadays – it enables us to understand the data and their relations much faster than reading about them in plain text.
The most common type of data visualization is a chart or graph. This is because many forms of data can be easily represented by a graph. When it comes to creating graphs, there are two main ways to do it:
- Create them manually using a software like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets
- Use online tools to create graphs automatically from your data
Data visualization is the process of taking raw data and converting it into a graphical representation to make it easier to understand. Businesses typically use data visualization tools to represent their raw data in the form of charts, graphs, infographics, dashboards, etc.
3. Data Visualization Tools Real-Time Collaboration
In the last few years, data visualization has grown to become an important tool for businesses of all sizes. However, several obstacles can make it harder for companies to take advantage of its benefits.
One such obstacle is that data visualization is often a collaborative process involving two or more teams within a company: one team working on collecting and organizing data from multiple sources and another team pulling that data together and creating compelling visualizations of it.
Doing so requires transferring information back and forth between these two teams, which can slow down the process. Fortunately, many tools are now available that make creating visualizations easier by allowing both teams to work together in real-time. Let’s take a look at some of the most poular ones.
With real-time collaboration, multiple users can work together on the same visualization at the same time. You’ll know whether your collaborators are viewing, editing or presenting your visualization.
Real-time collaboration is available in Tableau Desktop Professional and Tableau Server. Collaborators can be designated as editors, who can make changes to the visualization, or viewers, who can only view it.
If you have Tableau Server, you can also save your visualization to a server and share it with others in your organization.
4. Data Visualization Tools Scalability
When considering data visualization tools, scalability is an important factor in the decision-making process. How much data can you visualize?
Can your company take advantage of data visualization to its full extent?
Data Visualization Tools Scalability: The growth in data over the last few years has been exponential, and it isn’t going to slow down any time soon. IDC estimates that by 2025, the global datasphere will grow to 175 zettabytes — that’s 10 times the 16.1 zettabytes of data created in 2016.
If you want to gain a competitive edge and make sure your organization is getting the most out of its data analytics efforts, you need a tool that can scale with your needs. You might not have a huge amount of data now, but how much do you expect to have access to in five years?
Will your current tool be able to handle it all? If not, you need a better solution — one that can help you build visualizations from multiple datasets (even ones from different sources) and create dashboards that are easy for anyone in your company to use.
5. Data Visualization Tools AI-Integration
There are many tools for data visualization and analysis, but how does one decide what to use? This is a common question for many people and there are no “right” answers.
The tools and techniques you choose depends on your business, the size of a project, the type and amount of data you work with, the resources you have, etc.
Listed below are some of the most commonly used business intelligence tools that offer good data visualization options:
It also offers maps in SVG format as well as live streaming charts. FusionCharts renders better on both desktop and mobile devices with over 10X improvement in performance on smartphones compared to other competitors.
The newest version of FusionCharts v3 offers several new features such as multi-level drilldown charts, support for JSON data sources, theme-based chart styling, complete localization support for 9 languages including RTL languages like Arabic & Hebrew, and much more.
Data Visualization Tools – Frequently Asked Questions
What is a data visualization tool?
It is a tool that reduces the manual work of creating charts. Users can use these tools to create dashboards, reports, visualizations, and so on in a very short span of time.
Which data visualization tool is best for me?
The answer to this depends on your needs and preference. We provide a free version of our product, which you can try out here to see if it suits your requirements.
Is there any cost involved in using data visualization tools?
Yes. Most data visualization tools will cost you some money, though some might be available for free.
How do I choose the right data visualization tool?
First and foremost make sure that the tool meets your requirement. Ask yourself these questions:
Do I need to share my dashboards with others? Whether it is publicly or privately shared, if you need to share the dashboards then you need to make sure that the tool supports it before making a decision.
Do I need to collaborate with others in creating my dashboards? If this feature is important to you then ensure that the tool offers it before making your purchase decision.
Best Data Visualization Tools – Wrap Up
After you read this list of data visualization tools and look at their strengths and weaknesses, you might be wondering which one is the winner. You’re probably expecting me to say “Tableau.”
It would be easy to just pick Tableau as the “best” data visualization tool. It’s a great tool that has been around for a long time, is robust and can do just about anything you want it to do. But there are a few reasons why I won’t give Tableau that title:
Tableau is designed for users with more experience in data analysis and data visualization. If you don’t know how to connect your database, or if you don’t know how to interpret the data, then Tableau isn’t going to make it easier for you.
For example, if your database has a lot of calculated fields, then Tableau is going to have a hard time translating it into visualizations.
Tableau isn’t cheap. The license is quite expensive and there aren’t any free versions available. If you really want to get all of the features on offer, then it’s going to cost you a lot of money.
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