Data Visualization Tools

Get the best data visualization tools for your business. Compare product reviews, pricing below. Read our buyer’s guide for more help.

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Tableau is business intelligence software that allows anyone to connect to data in a few clicks, then visualize and create interactive, sharable dashboards with a few more. It’s easy enough that any Excel user can learn it…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Starting Price
$70/month/user
Client OS
Windows, Web
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Sisense is a business analytics platform that cleans your data, provides interactive visual analytics, and delivers insights. Sisense provides customized dashboards based on your industry. The solution can grab data from…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Starting Price
$4,200/user (perpetual license)
Client OS
Web, Windows
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Power BI from Microsoft is a suite of business analytics tools to analyze data and share insights. Power BI dashboards provide a 360-degree view for business users with their most important metrics in one place, updated in…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Starting Price
$10/month/user
Client OS
Web, Windows, iOS, Android
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Domo lets you connect your business to improve your decision-making. The software lets your integrate multiple data sources, store information, prepare reports, visualize your data, collaborate with other…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Starting Price
$83/month
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Datawrapper is a data visualization tool that creates charts and maps to help better tell your story. Datawrapper was designed to be used by journalists and can be used on mobile or desktop devices while in the design phase…
Price Range
$ $ · · ·
Starting Price
$39/month
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
FusionCharts provides JavaScript charts for web and mobile dashboards. The software includes over 100 interactive charts and over 1,400 data-driven maps. This includes popular charts such as bar, column, line, area, and pie…
Price Range
$ · · · ·
Starting Price
$497 (perpetual license)
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Infogram helps create infographics, reports, and maps for your organization. Infographics from Infogram help you tell a compelling data-driven story and present your content with easy to understand data that grabs the viewers…
Price Range
$ · · · ·
Starting Price
$19/month
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
IBM Cognos Analytics software provides personalized analytics driven by artificial intelligence (AI). It enables organizations to become top-performing and analytics-driven entities. From business intelligence to financial…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Starting Price
$70/month/user
Client OS
Linux, iOS, Android, Windows
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Discover deeper insights by building your own rich, guided analytics applications with a flexible, business-ready solution. Create business-driven data discoveries with guided analysis paths that are highly customizable and…
Price Range
$ · · · ·
Starting Price
$29/month
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
TIBCO Spotfire is an analytics platform that delivers visual, predictive, & streaming analytics. Data Discovery; Predictive Analytics; Big Data Analytics; Location Analytics; and Enterprise Scale Analytics. Industry-neutral…
Price Range
$ $ · · ·
Starting Price
$1,300/year/user
Client OS
Mac, Web, Windows, iOS
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises
Zoho
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Zoho is a suite of software and applications that can combine to run your entire business. Zoho CRM: The core Sales & Marketing arm of Zoho will let you reach out to prospects at the right moment and engage them across every…
Price Range
$ $ · · ·
Starting Price
$12/year/user
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
SAP Analytics Cloud (formerly SAP BusinessObjects Cloud) combines all analytics capabilities—including planning, predictive analytics, and business intelligence (BI)—in a single SaaS solution. Take advantage of a modern…
Price Range
$ $ · · ·
Starting Price
$23/month/user
Client OS
iOS, Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Unit4 Prevero is a fully integrated corporate performance management (CPM) solution designed to give the best functionalities out of box while still being tailored to your organization. Unit4 Prevero is powered by artificial…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Client OS
Web, Windows
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Adaptive Insights provides business planning through corporate performance management (CPM), sales planning, and workforce planning. The Adaptive Insights Business Planning Cloud leads the way for people in companies to…
Price Range
$ $ $ · ·
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Zebra BI is an Excel add-in that helps you create best-practice business reports in just a few clicks. Zebra BI makes financial reports crystal clear to all levels of management in real working conditions where reader’s…
Client OS
Windows
Deployment
On-Premises
Flex Planning is a Business Performance Management solution that helps finance executives tackle the challenges related to budgeting, planning and forecasting. The product includes reporting and analytics, consolidation, and…
Your business has collected a massive amount of data—and it’s only just begun. It’s growing by leaps and bounds every day, and it’s coming from new sources across your organization. No wonder why it’s harder than ever to…
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Designed for business users, Pivotier BIZ is easy, fast and colorful embedded reporting in both classic and role-tailored interfaces for Microsoft Dynamics NAV, without the need for experts to generate updates and small…
A cloud-based reporting and analytics platform specifically built for organizations who use NetSuite. KPI Cloud Analytics for NetSuite helps enable companies to gain maximum return from NetSuite ERP information quickly and at…
Client OS
Web
Deployment
Cloud Hosted
Birst is a cloud-based business intelligence platform that enables businesses to analyze, explore, and visualize big data. It is designed to be a native cloud application and hence comes with low TCO in both public and…
Client OS
Web, Windows
Deployment
Cloud or On-Premises

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Data Visualization Tools Buyer’s Guide

What Are Data Visualization Tools?

Data visualization tools create a visual means of enabling rapid consumption of key business data. The visualizations of big data will come in many forms, primarily charts, graphs, and plots. Data visualizations are just one of many types of BI tools available that engage the viewer, communicate the data, and elicit the appropriate response from the target audience. The data can come from a variety of sources, such as a spreadsheet in Excel or your accounting or ERP software.

Data visualization tools can be used by entrepreneurs and freelancers looking for analytics on their work, or by large enterprises looking to justify important business decisions.

Data visualizations provide the business intelligence needed to help interpret and present your data. Selecting the right data visualization tool for your data sets will help you accomplish your business goals.

Types of Data Visualizations

There are seven major types of visualizations that can best exemplify big data:

  • Bar graphs
  • Pie charts
  • Line charts
  • Scatter plots
  • Bubble charts
  • Map charts
  • Meters

Which types of data visualizations will work best for your situation? Usually, your visualizations take two (or more) pieces of data and combine them to show a relationship, a distribution, or a composition. You’ll want to think about what your business is trying to share to pick the best data visualization software.

A relationship is a situation that exists between two pieces of data when one table has a foreign key that references the primary key of the other table. The distribution of a statistical data set is a listing or function showing all the possible values of the data and how often they occur. Composition means that the components are combined to form a compound.

Relationships

  • Deviation can help emphasize variations from a fixed reference point. These include diverging bars or spine charts.
  • Correlation shows the relationships between variables. These include scatterplots and combined line and column charts.
  • Ranking shows items in an ordered list based on their importance or value. This includes ordered bars or columns or a dot strip plot.
Scatterplot Example Data Visualization Tools
An example of a scatterplot which shows a correlation between two different sets of data.

Distribution

  • Distribution can show how often values occur in a dataset. This includes histograms and boxplots.
  • Changes over time show movements over time-periods. This includes line graphs and columns.
  • Part-to-whole can help break a single entity into different elements that are intended to be highlighted. This includes stacked columns, pie charts, Venn diagrams, and treemaps.
Line Graph Example Data Visualization Tools
This line graph example shows a change in a budget over a time period.

Composition

  • Magnitude shows size comparisons and can be both relative or absolute. This includes stacked bars or paired bars.
  • Spatial is used whenever locations or geographical patterns are being visualized. These include Choropleths and contour maps.
  • Flow is used to show movement between different states which can help trace the outcome of a process.
Map Graph Example Board Data Visualization Tools
An example of a map graph from Board.

But how do you best engage the viewer, communicate your data, and elicit the appropriate response? Choosing the best data relationship will be one of the most important parts of telling your story.

Questions To Ask

To determine if your data is best explained via a relationship, a distribution, or a composition, you’ll want to ask the following questions:

  • What story do you want to tell?
  • Who is your audience?
  • Are you trying to analyze a trend, showcase data, or compare two sets of data?
  • Is any of your data time-based or time-sensitive?
  • How does your data exemplify key performance indicators?

Is Excel a Data Visualization Tool?

Excel is great for people performing data analysis but may miss the mark on providing data visualizations worth your time. Excel provides sufficient tooling to help you determine what type of charts or logic will work best when creating your data story. In fact, Excel (or any basic spreadsheet tool, such as Google Sheets) encourages their users to insert charts, pivot tables, or a power map for interactive graphing. With enough knowledge of how to work the program, the tool can create the needed visuals that may work well for your company.

However, creating these visuals en masse will prove to be a headache, and any company looking to consistently create visualizations from their big data would be better served looking to some of the popular free or open-source options available. Excel requires a bit more hand-holding, as you’ll first need to input data on the cell level, and then manually create the desired visualizations. Meanwhile, a data visualization tool will take your data and adjust your visualization in real-time.

When you consider the time investment needed to create a large number of visualizations in Excel, many realize there’s a benefit to considering one of the popular visualization tools on the market. Most will offer the ability to upload your data stored in Excel and create the graphs and charts you desire.


Free Data Visualization Tools

1. Google Charts

Google Charts provides easy to create visuals for whatever type of data you want. The application can provide visuals that are easily viewed in browsers or on mobile devices. They have a gallery of standard charts such as pie charts, line charts, column charts, area charts, treemaps, and more. Similar to the rest of Google’s “G Suite” productivity tools such as Google Sheets, their Charts application is absolutely free to use.

2. DataWrapper

DataWrapper provides a “pay what you need” model and provides their most basic version for free. The free version will let one user have access to create one map/chart a month, and allows up to 10,000 views/month. Like most free versions of paid products, this version will limit you in how many visualizations can be created and how many users can access your data. They also won’t let you export your visuals as a PNG or PDF file without a paid membership (starting at $39/month), making this most useful for start-ups and entrepreneurs.


Best Data Visualization Tools

1. Tableau

Tableau is a BI tool capable of creating interactive and sharable dashboards. This software routinely turns up when talking about top data visualization software due to it’s flexibility as an option for both small and large businesses. At it’s most basic level, Tableau can be learned and operated by users of Excel, but can also provide some of the most complex analytics for large corporations.

Price: Their Public version is free. Paid options start as low as $12/user/month.

Tableau Bar Chart Data Visualization Tools
A bar chart in the creation process via Tableau.

2. Domo

Domo provides data visualizations depending on your role in the company or the specific industry you work in. Domo’s Card Builder functionality provides a drag and drop interface that lets employees of all backgrounds create powerful data visualizations and clearly and easily highlight key takeaways.

Price: Not provided by the developer. A Professional and Enterprise plan are available depending on the volume of rows required and any needed compliance.

Data Visualization Tools In Domo Dashboard
A dashboard in Domo shows a number of data visualization possibilities.

3. Zoho Analytics

Zoho has its roots as a CRM software but also has powerful accounting, human resources, and business intelligence capabilities. Zoho Analytics is capable of turning your raw data into visuals that let you identify trends, outliers, and insights. It also has an assistant named Zia, which is an AI tool that uses machine learning and natural language processing technologies to help answer questions and make sense of your data.

Price: Starts at $22.50/month for the Basic package, providing access for 2 users, unlimited reports, and 500,000 rows (billed annually; $25/month otherwise)

Zoho Analytics Dashboard Data Visualization Tools
An analytics dashboard in Zoho Analytics showing trends, funnels, mapping, and more.