Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
3 Creating Charts That Show Trends
Creating Charts That Show
Trends
3
IN THIS CHAPTER
Choosing a Chart Type
You have two excellent choices when creating charts
that show the progress of some value over time.
Because Western cultures are used to seeing time
progress from left to right, you are likely to choose
a chart where the axis moves from left to right—
whether it is a column chart, line chart, or area
chart.
Choosing a Chart Type .................................. 83
Understanding Date-Based Axis Versus
CategoryBased Axis in Trend Charts ............................ 86
Communicate Effectively with Charts ......... 103
The new Sparklines feature is another way to show trends with tiny
charts. See Chapter 9 , “Using Sparklines, Data Visualizations, and Other
Nonchart Methods.”
Adding an Automatic Trendline to a Chart ... 113
Showing a Trend of Monthly Sales and Year-to-
Date Sales .................................................. 114
Understanding the Shortcomings of Stacked
Column Charts ........................................... 116
Column Charts for Up to 12 Time Periods
If you have only a few data points, you can use a
column chart because they work well for 4 quarters
or 12 months. Within the column chart category,
you can choose between 2-D and 3-D styles. To
highlight one component of a sales trend, you can
use a stacked column chart.
Shortcomings of Showing Many Trends on a
Single Chart ............................................... 118
This topic recommends not using pyramid charts or cone charts
because they distort your message. For an example, see the “Lying
with Shrinking Charts” section in Chapter 14, “Knowing When
Someone Is Lying to You With a Chart.”
Line Charts for Time Series Beyond 12 Periods
When you get beyond 12 data points, you should
switch to a line chart, which can easily show trends
for hundreds of periods. Line charts can be designed
to show only the data points as markers or data
points can be connected with a straight or smoothed
line.
 
 
 
 
 
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