7.7. Adding Context to Your Dashboards
In this lesson, we will explore chart reference lines, which are crucial for providing context to your visualizations.
Reference lines help to determine if a value is good or bad, by allowing comparisons to baselines, business targets, averages, competitor data, and other relevant benchmarks.
- Static number (fixed target): This type of reference line is a constant value that is set based on business or client requirements. It does not change and serves as a benchmark for comparison.
- Dynamic reference lines: These lines are calculated based on the data displayed in the chart. They can represent the maximum, average, or minimum values and will change if the chart's data is filtered or updated.
To add reference lines to a chart, select the chart and navigate to the "style" tab. Click on "add a reference line" and choose the type of reference line you wish to add.
If you select a constant value, you can input the value, axis, name, color, and line style. If you select a metric, you can choose a metric from your chart and the calculation type (median, average, percentile, minimum, maximum). These dynamic reference lines will update based on the chart's data and filters.
Another option for reference lines is using parameters.
Parameters allow users to input custom values as reference lines. This feature provides flexibility, as users can change the reference line value without needing to contact the report creator. To set up a parameter-based reference line, choose "parameter" instead of "constant value" or "metric" when adding a reference line. Define the parameter and apply it to the input for the viewer to adjust as needed.
In summary, chart reference lines offer valuable context to your data visualizations by allowing comparisons to various benchmarks. Utilizing static, dynamic, or parameter-based reference lines can enhance your charts and make them more informative and actionable for your audience.