What are the best visualizations for tracking changes over time?

Hi, I’m updating my dashboards to include some longer-term reports (example: revenue last 3 months) to track changes over time. Are there any recommended visualizations for displaying this data in the best way? Thanks.

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Great question @Alison but difficult to answer because so much depends on what you are exactly after on the one hand, and what data you have available on the other.

Generally speaking I’d suggest line charts or column charts to visualise trends. Which one you decide to go for could well depend on personal preferences but also on what data you have available and how this is organised/bucketed. For example if your data is available by days or weeks a line chart would be the way to go. However, if you only have data by month (or fewer data points for that matter), you might want to consider a column chart or bar chart instead.

Another consideration to make is how much data varies from month to month (or data point to data point). If there’s very little variation in the data, trends are going to be hard to spot visually. In such cases, I’d probably show a whole year (instead of only few months) so you can also see seasonality and get a longer term comparison.

That said, I worked on a theoretical scenario where a company has both monthly records as well as daily records for the past 3 months to show a couple options which hope helps making the above explanation more tangible :slight_smile:

Note: The first “row” (in the dashboard) assumes you only have data available for each month. The second “row” assumes you have data available on daily basis.

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