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Bubble & Scatter Charts


Overview

Scatter and Bubble charts offer powerful tools to visualize complex business scenarios in a very efficient manner, as they allow you to compare data across several variables at one time.


 
Most visuals (such as column charts and line charts)... have a numeric axis and a category axis. 

In these charts, the vertical axis is the numeric axis.

This means that the size of the data being charted is indicated by the position of the column or line with respect to the vertical-axis.

 

 


 


 



Bubble and scatter charts are different, because both axes of these charts are numeric.


Thus, the position of the point is an indicator of a category’s relationship to two numeric values.

 

In this example, we are looking at how the category Year relates to the numeric measures of Sales Amount and Profit % .

 

 


 


 

A bubble chart is similar to a scatter chart, but a bubble chart can represent a third numeric variable through the size of the circle...


and – as we'll see in a moment – we can even include an additional category.

Here we still see Sales Amount and Profit % over a period of time, and we have introduced Sales Order Quantity as represented by the size of the bubbles.


Let's have a look at how we could create these types of charts in the Dashboard Builder...

 

 


 

Creating a Scatter Chart

 





After starting a new dashboard in the Dashboard Builder, we next select the Scatter Chart icon from the available visuals.

 

 


 

 


 

Let's expand on the above example and show how we can include two categories in our graph. We'll still add the dimension Year, but let's place it in the "Group By" field.  Next, let's use the Location dimension as the chart's Category.


If we use the drag-and-drop feature to place the measures on the chart itself, the first will form the horizontal axis, and the second measure will be applied to the vertical axis.

We now see our Sales and Profit for each of our warehouse Locations, organized by Year.

 

 


 

 



We can use the legend in our chart to turn off years we do not want to see, and can then compare values for those years in which we are interested.

 

 


 


Creating a Bubble Chart


Let's look at how we would create a bubble chart to show this same information... and a little more. 

Just as before, well select the chart we want from the available visuals.

 

 


 

 

 

Again, we'll add the dimensions Year and Location.

And we'll add both Sales Amount and Profit % for our numeric measures.

This time, however, we can add yet a third measure.  This is where Bubble Charts really become powerful.

Let's add Sales Order Quantity in the chart's Bubble Size field.

Now we see three separate numeric measures (Sales, Profit, and Quantity) measured against two distinct dimensions (Year and Location). 

 

 

 

Bubble and Scatter Charts provide very powerful tools for you to use in analyzing data within your dashboards.

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