A quick search engine query can find you an excellent graph maker. From there, you can find high-quality templates. This process enables you to input data to generate the graph automatically. However, some cases require an intricate and in-depth approach to graph making. Without the right graph-making knowledge, you might confuse your audience.
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Graphs are visual data representations. Therefore, they need to have a clear and legible design. It can be challenging to make a good graph because every single chart element matters. Make sure you follow each of these steps to create an easy-to-read and entirely understandable graph.
How to Make a Graph Interestingly Compelling
How To Make a Bar Graph: Start With The Basics
Templates are an excellent starting point to know what makes a good graph. For example, you’ve chosen a Venngage template because you’re in a rush. However, you didn’t just choose the design without thinking. The chart design was compelling enough to make you click and look at its elements and organization.
However, keep in mind that every chart has a specific use. Some can omit certain data with proper use. For example, a pie chart won’t illustrate changes over time effectively. On the other hand, line charts can do them much more effectively.
Bar Graph Maker: Show Data Clearly
It’s easy to manipulate bar graph data. Excluding specific categories in bar charts illustrate a consistent trend among various areas. Therefore, this bad practice omits comparative data that could have shown realistic trends and results.
Some illicit researchers and writers consciously omit data on their graphs to push particular agendas. If you don’t believe it, it’s still happening today. However, if your goal is to show data clearly, honesty is the best policy. Here are some checkpoints to make sure you’ve effectively followed this step:
- No data point obstructions
- All labels have proper titles. Audiences shouldn’t have to guess label meanings second
- Zero chart distortions
Line Graph Maker: Simplicity Tells Plenty
Line charts are a stock market favorite because it’s simple to read. The line clearly shows increases and decreases. However, adding three or more lines in a chart obscures other lines and data points. Doing this makes the graph much more confusing.
In addition, some chart makers don’t use zero as starting points. To mislead, some writers use massive scales to flatten lines and “dissolve” trends.
These bad practices use honest and reliable data to bend the truth. Simplicity does work for easy reading. However, simplifying to omit data will never be a good practice.
Make sure your line charts are always speaking the truth using the following pointers:
- No pictograms for more than a dozen samples and data figures
- Avoid distorting charts by using a single or common scale
- A 2D perspective is enough to illustrate points. Don’t use 3D
- No shading
- Use standard or commonly-used color conventions
- No decorations (even for social media charts)
Everything Has To Be Transparent: Use an X Y Graph Maker
Did you know pie charts have a scholarly stigma that many statisticians discourage their use? If you’ve used pie graphs to spot household budget changes, you’re welcome to use them. However, pie graphs cannot represent changes over time.
In addition, pies fail to spot trends between numerous categories. On the other hand, it’s good for showing the parts that make a whole.
An XY-coordinate chart always shows data in the most transparent manner. However, it’s confusing visually to show population growth per country using scatter plot charts. To ensure transparency, always follow the first two steps above. Plus, learn when to use the following bad but still useful graphs:
- Pie: Showing parts of a whole
- Donut: Showing parts of a whole with much more categories that pie can’t illustrate
- Pareto: If you’re troubleshooting and listing items according to repair priority
- Scatterplot: When you have more than a hundred data points.
Comply With Online Graph Maker Standards
There’s no standard charter for making charts. However, following conventions that everyone understands is a good starting point. Here are general design standards you can follow. These ensure your graphs are easily read and understood and that you can use charts to visualize your data properly.
- Consistent Colors: Singular colors work best for bar graph comparison. Accent colors can help indicate data points crucial to the study.
- Height: Charts must illustrate changes over 75% of the Y-axis. Decrease your XY scale if the graph cannot display the necessary changes.
- Use Contrast: Make line chart comparison easier by using contrasting colors.
- Color Intensity Applications: A higher color intensity indicates density. Therefore, lighter colors must show otherwise. It should never be the other way around.
- No Distractions: Everything on a chart tells a story. Decorations and endowments aren’t needed.
Implement These Points Easily With a Free Graph Maker!
At this point, you know the core principles of making an excellent graph.
Give it a spin by using your favorite free chart-making software, such as Venngage.
Always remember, honest intentions always bring out chart data transparency and excellent design.