Businesses today move faster than ever, including small businesses. Those with access to real-time data are better positioned to respond to changes as they occur. At the same time, data is complex, and who has time to pour over page after page of numbers or row after row of spreadsheet data? How do you make sense of it quickly so that you can indeed respond? With data visualizations.
Data visualization tools display real-time data in a highly visual manner. Not only can you see your data presented visually in appealing, easy-to-understand charts, graphs, gauges, and meters, most data visualization tools allow you to drill in and explore the data even further.
Choosing the right data visualization tool is imperative. Don't be fooled into choosing the prettiest data visualization tool on the market as it's easy to be swayed by so-called bells and whistles. Think about what each tool offers your business and how it could be used to its fullest advantage. While you're at it, think about the data you will be analyzing. Does the data visualization tool make sense for your specific data type and needs? One of the most important choices at this point is to choose a data visualization tool that offers your business rich multi-dimensional charting. InetSoft, a developer of data visualization tools, defines multi-dimensional charting as follows:
"Multi-dimensional charting is the ability to depict more than two dimensions on a graph by simultaneously representing points through various shapes, sizes, or colors. This enables users to create 3D, 4D, or even 5D charts."
Another consideration when selecting a data visualization tool involves usability. For example, if a tool is too complicated to use, no one in your business will use it. On the other hand, if it's easy to use and delivers valuable insights in real-time, it has a much better chance of becoming the go-to tool for growing your business.
Businesses of all sizes, including small businesses, can benefit from data visualization. Why struggle to understand huge spreadsheets when you can quickly visualize that same data with multi-dimensional charts, interactive graphs, and drag-and-drop dashboards?
- SASCom Magazine, "5 tips to help SMBs get visual with data," - https://www.sas.com/en_us/news/sascom/2014q1/help-smbs-get-visual-with-data.html
- InetSoft, "Enterprise Data Visualization Tools & Software," - http://www.inetsoft.com/solutions/data_visualization/