Choosing a chart type

Choosing a suitable chart type is essential to visualizing data accurately, sending a clear message, and telling the desired story.

When choosing a chart type, consider:

  • how many values or categories are being featured
  • whether categories or values are being considered over time
  • if multiple charts would work best

Available types

We offer six basic chart styles.

Data considerations

When choosing a chart type, consider:

  • the number of variables;
  • data points; and
  • values to be displayed.

Composition

Displays parts of a whole. Occasionally shows its cycle over time or categories.

Comparison

Compares one or multiple data series and their differences by category or over time.

Distribution

Shows the distribution of variables to identify outliers (abnormal data) and trends.