Choosing a Chart Type and Configuration

To choose a chart type, consider what you want the chart to illustrate. Different chart types and configurations emphasize different things.

Purpose Chart type or configuration

Show contributions of parts to a whole

Bar Charts

Pie Charts

Stacked Charts, when you want to display measures of the whole, as well as the parts

100 Percent Stacked Charts

Show trends in time or contrast values across different categories

Line Charts

Area Charts

Bar Charts

Column Charts

Always place time in the horizontal axis.

Compare groups of related information against actual values

Bar Charts

Radar Charts

Compare different kinds of quantitative information

Combination Charts

Rank values in descending or ascending order

Bar Charts

Column Charts

Show correlation between two sets of measures

Point Charts

Show key performance indicators in an executive dashboard report

Gauge Charts

Bullet Charts