Data visualization is one of the must-haves of the big data and business intelligence services world. This is a crucial element of data analytics because it provides an intelligible way to see and understand trends and patterns in data. And, as its name indicates, it is a graphical representation of information and data.

In this article, we will focus on such issues as: What is data visualization and why it is important? How is data visualization used? Let’s begin!

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What is data visualization?

It is a set of tools and techniques used to communicate data or information by presenting it as visual objects (e.g., points, lines or bars) contained in graphics. Every diagram is a data visualization tool. So is every infographic, chart, dashboard and, in many cases, map as well.

In the world of big data, data visualization tools and technologies are essential to analyze huge amounts of information and make data-driven decisions.
Why is it so popular and essential in our business and day-to-day scenery?

data visualization

Why is data visualization so important?

The answer lies in the way we are constructed. In fact, the human brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text, and 90 percent of information transmitted to the brain is visual. [1]
This means that it is easier for most of us to read and interpret graphic presentations than just ordinary text. It helps in the decision-making process and allows us to memorize what we see more efficiently. If we can see something, we internalize it quickly. This is the way our brain works.

As the “big data era” gets popular, visualization is becoming an increasingly vital tool for understanding the trillions of rows of data generated every day.
For example, Internet users generate about 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every day. And in 2020, each person generated 1.7 megabytes in just a second. [2]

dashboardSource: tableau.com

Regardless of the business industry, it can provide data in the most effective way, helping to get the most important insights. Data visualization tools help companies identify which areas need improvement, which factors influence customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction, and what to do with specific products. Thanks to it, business owners and stakeholders can more accurately predict sales volumes and future growth.

Now we know why it is so important. So, let’s dive deeper into the benefits of good data visualization.

The benefits of good data visualization

You already know that without data visualization, it would be almost impossible to harness the masses of data that are being produced every second. Why is it beneficial? Here are some major ways that data visualization can benefit a company:

Faster decision-making process

Companies that can gather and quickly act on their data are more competitive because they can make informed decisions sooner than the competition. Speed is the key to success, and data visualization is the quickest way to analyze vast quantities of data.

Faster access to valuable business insights

By using data visualization tools and techniques, you are better prepared to extract meaningful and valuable information from the accessible data. With the help of tools, you get results as visual objects, and your company can easily determine where to prioritize.

Better understanding of business operations

Effective data visualization will help you better understand your business processes, as well as identify the correlations between them. It also helps to analyze business metrics and check the effectiveness of project execution plans.

What are data visualization tools?

A data visualization tool is a type of advanced software used to visualize data. The features of each tool are different, but mostly they allow you to enter a data set and visually manage it.

Also, there’s a whole wide selection of visualization methods to present data. Among them, most common are charts, tables, graphs, maps and heatmaps, infographics, dashboards, cartograms, histograms, timelines, pictograms, and several others. Below you will find the list of best visualization tools for your business.

powerbiSource: powerbi.microsoft.com

The best data visualization tools and software for businesses

Knowing that, let’s switch to available tools and software. Many of you will think of MS Excel first, and it is a correct shot. Indeed it allows us to create charts and graphs based on data entered into its sheet. But the list goes on:

• Tableau
• Power BI
• Sisence
• Zoho
• DataWrapper

All these tools are far more sophisticated and allow creating complex charts and infographics. However, at a price. All of them are paid and usually require at least basic coding knowledge.

Get more information about Data Analytics and BI Tools – 8 Best Examples for Your Business

Where data visualization is used?

As you might expect, we can find data visualization examples almost everywhere. There are five primary disciplines where data visualization finds application, but, of course, the list is much longer.

Marketing

Almost every marketing analytics tool uses data visualization, no matter if we talk about Google Ads, Facebook Ads or other, commercial solutions. Marketers and their clients adore statistics, charts, and graphs. If you cooperate with a marketing agency of any kind, it is likely that you receive reports that consist of many graphs and diagrams.

Finances

Every stock exchange uses interactive data visualization to show the current stock valuations. Candlestick visualization charts are the most common type of data visualization in finances. They show how the price has changed over time, and the finance professionals can use it to spot trends and predict future bull or bear markets. Moreover, it can communicate the change in price more quickly than a grid of data points.

Politics

Every single time, before elections, there are lots of geographic maps on the Internet and news shows with support bars for each candidate or party. After the elections, research companies present districts or states, and how each one of them voted.

Logitics

All of the shipping companies use interactive data visualization software to understand and plan global shipping routes. World maps with marked routes are often used to present possible connections between countries and cities (many airlines do that) or to track a given package or a vehicle (courier services companies and fleet management companies use such tools).

Healthcare

Healthcare companies and institutions often use choropleth visualizations to visualize valid health data. For example, how an epidemic grows and develops in time.

Inspiring real-life examples of data visualization

Now you know where data visualization can be used. But we want to show some real-life examples of interactive and static visualizations to inspire you to use this technology in your company.

Why do buses bunch?

This interactive visualization shows how “bus bunching” happens (when a bus is delayed and later it leads to several buses arriving at the same stop at the same time).

data visualizationSource: setosa.io

Marketing Performance Data Visualization

With this visualization, you can check the return on investment and the effectiveness of the project/company, the level of productivity, SEO, PPC, the effectiveness of social networks and emails.

data tool

Universcale by Nikon

The purpose of this insightful interactive data visualization from Nikon is to provide viewers with an understanding of the size of objects, large and small, through comparisons.

interactive data

interactive dataSource: nikon.com

Popular programming languages on the CRAN network

The following visualization – a combination of a bubble diagram and a circular network graph – shows the use of popular programming languages in 300 packages in the Complex R Archive Network (CRAN). Each circle’s size is proportionate to the amount of lines of code used to create a package.

data visualizationSource: Dr Torsten Sprenger / GitHub

Data Visualization for Developers

Developers also often use visualizations that show project presentation, real-time bugs tracking, examples, progress and results.

data visualization for developers

Data analytics predictions you should know in 2022

Let’s take a look at some data analytics statistics and predictions that will hit 2022:

• The global business intelligence market will be valued at $30.9 billion by 2022 [3]
• Retail/Wholesale, Financial Services, and Technology organizations are increasing their BI budgets by over 50% in 2022 [4]
• According to Forrester Consulting, data-driven companies are 58% more likely to beat revenue goals than those who are not focused on data.
• 63% of companies say that improved efficiency is the top benefit of data analytics, while 57% say more effective decision-making [5]

Does your company use data visualization?

What about you? Does your company use data visualization? We bet it does! Possibly, you’re thinking now of various ways to make it even more efficient and profitable to your business? Thankfully, you’re in the right place! Let’s talk about your ideas. Addepto is a business intelligence consulting company. We will gladly help you with everything your business needs that’s related to artificial intelligence and big data.

References

[1] How our brains are hardwired for visual content. URL: https://killervisualstrategies.com/blog/how-our-brains-are-hardwired-for-visual-content.html. Accessed Dec 23, 2021.
[2] 25+ Impressive Big Data Statistics for 2021. URL: https://techjury.net/blog/big-data-statistics/#gref. Accessed Dec 23, 2021.
[3] Business Intelligence Market to Be Valued at $30.9 Billion by 2022. URL: https://www.beroeinc.com/blog/business-intelligence-market-to-be-valued-at-30-9-billion-dollar-by-2022/. Accessed Dec 23, 2021.
[4] Dresner Advisory – Business Intelligence Market Study 2021. URL: https://www.board.com/en/analyst-report/dresner-business-intelligence-market-study#gref. Accessed Dec 23, 2021.
[5] 70 Relevant Analytics Statistics: 2020/2021. URL: https://financesonline.com/relevant-analytics-statistics/ . Accessed Dec 23, 2021.

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