How to Select the Right Chart Type for Your Data?

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Author: Vivek Singh from

Choosing the Right Charts for PowerPoint Presentations

Is it a pie chart or a bar graph? Stacked bar or a line? Or is it an area graph?

We make charts almost every time we make PowerPoint presentations. If you are in sales or marketing, you would be making more charts than others. If you are in finance or consulting then you will have more charts than slides in your presentation. How do you then choose the right charts for PowerPoint?

I am sharing with you 4 links which will help you make the right decision.

Org Chart in PowerPoint

How to Choose the Right Charts Type? (On my blog All About Presentations)

In this post I have shared my own methodology on how to decide on the right chart or graph. Which chart to use depends on what you are doing with your data. You can do 6 things with your data. 1. Compare data 2. Break data into smaller parts 3. View data over time 4. Break data into parts and compare the sub-parts 5. Compare data over time and 6. Breaking data into parts and seeing it over time. I have then talked about real life situations and which chart to use for all these 6 applications.

You can read the post by clicking here or download the 39 page e-book by clicking here.

Chart Chooser (by Andrew Abela)

Andrew Abela made an interesting diagram which helps you choose the right chart type. You need to start from the middle and move in the relevant direction. He talks about 4 things you would like to show with your data. 1. Comparison 2. Distribution 3. Composition and 4. Relationship.

You can read the post here or download the pdf by clicking here. You can also view the chart chooser by Juice Analytics here.

Gantt Chart PowerPoint

How to Select Right Chart for your Data (by Chandoo)

Chandoo is a Microsoft MVP and an excel expert. He has also tried to answer this question in his own style in a very recent post. He talks about 6 common reasons why we make a chart. 1. To compare 2.To show Distribution 3. To explain Parts of the Whole 4. To tell the Trend over time 5. To find out the Deviations  6. To understand the Relationship

He has then gone on to explain each point in further detail.

You can read the post by clicking here.

These are 3 useful ways to help you choose the right chart. Go through all of these (should not take more than 30 minutes to read them all) and use them the next time you make a presentation. Choose the methodology which you understand better. Chances are you will remember it better too. Best of luck with your charts!

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