Tip #13: 3 important chart customizations to make them more readable

Tip #13: 3 important chart customizations to make them more readable

Charts are great tools for representing data. Visualizing can give you a new perspective, and help you unlock new insights from your data. Here are three customization options that can enhance your charts for maximum impact.

Labels: Cover all the basics

  1. Pick the right chart type for your data. Not all charts have to be pies and bars. 
  2. Use explanatory chart and series labels.  
  3. Create a legend for the chart.
Applying labels, and playing around with their formatting and positioning, can make it easier for an audience to understand what the chart is all about—before even looking at the data. 

Axes: Keeping things in line

Most charts are bound by the vertical and horizontal axes. Making them self-explanatory helps you build an easy-to-understand chart. With Zoho Sheet, you can specify the starting point of the vertical axis, the minimum and maximum values the axis will run through, the data interval, scale factor, and number formats. 

Data: Decide the "what" and "how"

When there's too much data, charts cannot function as concise visual tools. It's always best to keep the data simple, sorted, and aggregated. You can depict just a selected portion of the data, either from the top or the bottom. Zoho Sheet helps you sort chart series from either higher to lower or lower to higher, and aggregate to keep your chart clutter free. 

Note: Trend lines and threshold lines can serve as simple, but effective, ways of conveying ancillary information. If you can, try to incorporate them in your charts!

These customizations will ensure that your charts are not only aesthetically pleasing, but highly effective as well. Here's a checklist that you can save for future references.

Share with us the other customization options you use to make charts visually appealing and effective in the comments. Follow our Twitter and LinkedIn spaces for product updates and other spreadsheet related information. Thanks for reading! 

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