Modeling, monitoring, and analyzing information are analytical skills. But when sharing those analysis, you have to act like a designer to get your point across. Visualizations should include memorable and compelling graphics. Data, when shown in the form of visualizations, assist you in building a more articulate and persuasive case. They help viewers understand and connect with data, through support for clear insights. Here is an infographic showing the 6 best practices of data visualization:
1. Embrace Clarity
Avoid adding more formatting than is needed to achieve data clarity. Avoid clutter or elements that draw too much (or too little) focus. Label data points and put clear titles on charts and graphs.
2. Be Consistent
Keep design elements such as color and line weight uniform. Make certain the name and color representing a particular data point across a dashboard or related charts stays the same.
3. Support Readability
Use light and dark values to create contrast instead of relying on different colors. Use font types, font sizes, and text orientation that are easy to read. Choose shape fills and backgrounds that support numbers and text.
4. Achieve Balance
Simplify and make sure that what’s important is easy to see. Leave the right amount of “white space” between chart elements. Show the right number of data relationships per chart.
5. Get Input
Get feedback on your visualization, to see if your message is getting across. If your message didn’t come through, adjust your visualization or try a different approach.
6. Pursue Truth
Pick the type of chart that best represents the data. Start from zero on the y axis for graphs to avoid misinterpretation—unless you have a clear reason not to.
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