A well-designed dashboard can help you track your business performance and spot trends quickly and easily. If you are going to take the time to create a dashboard, you want to make sure it is as effective as possible.
With a well-designed and effective dashboard, you can make better business decisions, track your progress, and spot trends quickly and easily.
Why having a great-looking BI dashboard matters
Your BI dashboard may be one of the first things people see when they come to your site or app. And first impressions matter. If your dashboard looks good, people are more likely to trust the data it is displaying.
On the other hand, if your dashboard looks cluttered or confusing, people are less likely to trust it. And if they don’t trust it, they are less likely to use it.
For example, imagine you are looking at two different dashboards.
Dashboard A is well-designed and easy to understand. It has a clear layout and uses colors effectively to help you quickly spot trends.
Dashboard B, on the other hand, is cluttered and confusing. There is too much information crammed into one space. The colors are not used effectively, and it is difficult to find the data you are looking for.
Which dashboard are you more likely to trust?
The answer is most likely Dashboard A. And the same is true for your users. If you want people to trust and use your dashboard, you need to make sure it looks good.
How to make your BI dashboard look good
A well-built BI dashboard has a few key features that help it stand out.
A well-designed layout
The first thing you will notice about a well-designed dashboard is that it has a clean and effective layout. All the information is easy to find, and the overall look is pleasing to the eye.
BI dashboards are often data-heavy. And if not designed correctly, they can look cluttered and overwhelming. A well-designed layout helps to avoid this by organizing the information in an easy-to-understand way.
A few key design elements include:
White space: Using white space effectively can help to avoid a cluttered look. It also makes it easier for the eye to find the information you are looking for.
Alignment: Keeping your dashboard elements aligned creates a sense of order and makes it easier to scan.
Hierarchy: Using different sizes of visuals to create a hierarchy of information helps draw attention to the most important data.
If you are not a designer, don’t worry! There are plenty of great dashboard templates out there that you can use to get started.
Effective use of color
Color is an important design element that should not be overlooked. The right colors can help guide the eye, highlight important data, and create visual interest.
When choosing colors for your dashboard, keep the following in mind:
Less is more: Too many colors can be overwhelming. Stick to a limited color palette and use it consistently throughout your dashboard.
Complimentary colors: Use colors that complement each other. For example, blue and orange are complementary colors.
Meaningful colors: Use colors with certain connotations to highlight important data points. For example, you might use red to represent negative values and green to represent positive values.
Your dashboard should be easy to navigate, so users can find the information they are looking for quickly and easily.
Navigation can be achieved in a number of ways, including:
Tabs: Using tabs is a great way to organize your dashboard and make it easy to navigate. You can use tabs to group together related information or break up a long dashboard into smaller sections.
Menus: Using menus is another way to help users find the information they are looking for. You can use a drop-down menu to list different categories of information or create a side menu that users can use to navigate between dashboard pages.
Search: Adding a search bar to your dashboard can be very helpful, especially if you have a lot of data. This way, users can quickly search for the specific data they are looking for.
Adding interactive elements to your dashboard can make it more engaging and enjoyable to use. Interactive elements can include:
Charts and graphs: Adding charts and graphs is a great way to visualize data. And making them interactive can make them even more effective. For example, you could allow users to hover over a data point to see more information or click on a data point to drill down into the details.
Filters: Adding filters is a great way to allow users to customize the information they see. For example, you might allow users to filter data by time period or product type.
With more and more people accessing dashboards from their personal devices, it’s important to make sure your dashboard is designed for mobile devices.
Some things to keep in mind when designing for mobile include:
Screen size: Mobile screens are much smaller than desktop screens, so you need to make sure your dashboard elements are sized appropriately.
Scroll vs. swipe: Users typically scroll down on a mobile device, so it’s important to design your dashboard with that in mind. For example, you might want to put your dashboard header at the top of the screen so users can see it when they first start scrolling.
Touchscreen: Keep in mind that users will be interacting with your dashboard using their fingers, not a mouse. So, you need to make sure your buttons and other interactive elements are big enough to be easily tapped.
Some things to consider when sharing your dashboard include:
Embed code: If you want to embed your dashboard on a website or blog, make sure you have the code to do so.
Permissions: Some BI tools let you share your dashboard with others based on their roles. Make sure you have permissions set so that unauthorized users don’t see data they’re not supposed to see.
Sharing dashboards allow you to collaborate with others and get feedback on your work. It can also help you reach a wider audience for your dashboard.
How to make your BI dashboard work better for you
Even the best-looking dashboard won’t be effective if it’s not easy to use. Here are some tips on how to make your BI dashboard work better for you:
Clean your data before you start
The first step to creating a great dashboard is to have clean data. This means making sure your data is complete, accurate, and consistent.
Use the right tool for the job
There are a lot of different dashboard tools out there, and each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. So, it’s essential to choose the right tool for the job.
Follow best practices
There are certain best practices that you should follow when creating a dashboard. For example, you should make sure your dashboard is easy to read and understand. You should also make sure your dashboard is designed for the people who need to use it.
Once you’ve created your dashboard, it’s important to get feedback from the people who will be using it. This feedback can help you improve your dashboard and make it more effective.
The bottom line
Creating a visually appealing BI dashboard is essential. But it’s even more important to make sure your dashboard is easy to use and designed for the people who need to see it. By following these tips, you can create a dashboard that works better for you and helps you track your business performance more effectively.
Check out some related resources:
What you need to consider when evaluating & selecting BI and analytics software
How to ignite insight-driven decision-making across your business
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