How do you find and communicate insights in data? Excel is fine in some cases, but trends and outliers are much more easily identified and conveyed through graphs, charts and other visual means. Luckily, the advancements of the business intelligence and analytics market have provided buyers with an ample choice of software tools to use in order to visualize data.
Data visualization tools can be broadly categorized into 5 types:
- Spreadsheet tools with native or plugin support for simple visualizations
- Open-source libraries such as d3.js that developers can use to create charts on the web
- Reporting tools for analysts or business users generating static reports with visual elements
- Dynamic data visualization software used to build interactive dashboards
- End-to-end analytics tools with both data visualization and data preparation capabilities
Your ideal choice between these applications is very much dependant on your requirements and what you want to achieve. As with many other cases when it comes to data, there is hardly ever a “one size fits all” that will fit any person in any organization. Careful evaluation and comparison of the various options available will help you understand which one is right for you.
If you’re a business user working with a few simple spreadsheets, you’ll probably be perfectly happy visualizing data in Excel. If you’re an analyst and your IT department is feeding you clean data, you’ll want a front-end visualization tool to help communicate your BI insights with others via web dashboards. If you’re working with complex data and want a tool that you can use to clean, model and visualize data, you might want to look at a Single-Stack™ BI solution.
Check out the resources on this page for guides and examples on data visualization, and how to find the data analytics software that will provide you with the most value.
Data Visualization Toolkit:
How to Choose the Right Data Visualization
Learn how to choose the most accurate and informative way to visually represent your data, based on which information you are trying to convey, and see examples.Read Now (PDF)
Comparing BI and Data Visualization Tools
This guide walks you through the difference between end-to-end analytics software and front-end tools.Read Now
Watch a Demo of Sisense
See how you can use Sisense to connect to multiple sources, prepare data for analysis and then visualize it in web dashboards.Watch Now