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Data Visualization Best Practices Part 1: The 3 Cardinal Rules

7 Apr 2016 by Lindsay Pinchot

When it comes to visualizing data, many options are available to developers. With visualization solutions such as Power BI and Tableau, creating visuals for use in reports and dashboards is easier than ever. But with this luxury comes a whole new issue: How do you best visualize data?

Much like those pesky multiple-choice problems from school (or technical certification exams), you have to choose the best answer, regardless of the number of answers that might be technically correct. The best data visualization is one that can be interpreted quickly, is intuitive and supports actionable analysis. It provides measurable value to the user. To create a visual that meets these standards, follow these cardinal rules:

Whether you're creating a single visualization or an entire report or dashboard, all of these rules apply. They may seem basic, but developers often miss the mark by violating one or more of these guidelines. Although there's much more to be said on the topic, keeping these principles in mind will start you on the path to creating great data visualizations.

Learn more about the common mistakes developers make and ways to avoid them.

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About Lindsay Pinchot
Data Solutions Consultant

Lindsay has experience in all aspects of the business intelligence lifecycle, from data modeling and Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) to report and dashboard creation.

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