Customizing your grouped column chart

This guide will walk you through the steps necessary to a grouped column chart as seen below. We assume that you have already uploaded your dataset into Datawrapper. This chart type helps to display related data or groups of related data, for example, revenue vs. the profit. Ideally, the "grouped" display reveals a clear and easy to understand pattern for the user. 

After you've selected " Grouped Column Chart" and while you're still in the tab "Chart type", you might notice that the chart doesn't look anything like in the screenshot above. To change that, try to click on "transpose this data" below the chart type selection, or visit the first part of this tutorial "How to create a grouped column chart" to understand how your data needs to be structured for this chart type.

Once your chart looks similar to the one above, we can start to change its appearance. We will go through three tabs in step 3: Visualize to do so: "Refine", "Annotate" & "Design": 

1

Refine

After clicking on the tab "Refine", the first thing that you'll see is the option to adjust the colors of your bars. You can click on "customize colors", to assign each bar an own color. Datawrapper will show you a list of the labels in your first column. Click on a label (e.g. "Revenue") and then on the color box below "Choose a Color". A small popup will open, and you'll be able to choose a new color for your selected label. 

You can also "Reset all colors" (to the right) or select all or none colors below the list of labels.

Below the "customize color" feature, you have more options: You can...

  • Automatically sort bars. You'll find that the bars appear in the order in your original dataset, so this feature can be helpful to create a different order. In our case, we don't want to automatically sort the bars.
  • Reverse order of your bars.
  • Show or hide value labels. By default, we only show the value labels on the bars if readers hover of them. Here, you can decide to disable that or to always show the value labels. 

After working through the tab "Refine", we continue with the tab "Annotate":

2

Annotate

Describe chart

If you've created a Datawrapper chart or map before, you already know this feature. Here we can give your chart a title, a description, add notes and a source:

  • We recommend using the title to tell your readers what's interesting about this chart – the one key statement that you want to show on this chart, e.g. "Unemployment highest in the south"
  • The description should have as much information about the data as possible: What do we see exactly? E.g. "Unemployment rates in % in all US states, 2016"
  • Think of notes as footnotes, where we want to specify any abnormalities about your data. E.g. "California unemployment rates from Jan and Feb 2016 not included in the calculation."
  • The source name will give our readers information about how trustworthy our data is. Does it come from a government institution or another trustworthy organization? The source URL lets our reader dig even deeper and have a look at the underlying data themselves. Both, source name and source URL, should be filled out on every map to increase transparency. E.g. US Bureau of Labour Statistics, August 2017

Highlight elements

In the 2nd panel in the "Annotate" tab, we can emphasize certain variables. To do so, select the element(s) you want to highlight. The rest of the bars will automatically tone down: 

3

Design

In this last tab, you can select a preset layout and enable social sharing functions to spread your work. Click on "Publish" and you'll be directed to the "Publish & Embed" page.

The best way to use a Datawrapper chart is by embedding it directly in your website. To do that, click the big blue button that says " Embed chart on website". Then, copy & paste the embed code snippet into your website or CMS. You can also download your chart as a PNG or PDF by upgrading to a paid Single or Team account. Click here for more information on the different pricing plans of Datawrapper.

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