So you have assessed the needs of your company and decided that data visualization is an indispensable tool in the arsenal of any progressive business model. Now the questions are “What is the best data visualization software?” and “Which best data visualization software should I choose?”.
Simple. Read our article on Choosing The Top Data Visualization Software & Tools created by our data analysts and the people who really love data visualization.
Ready to dive in?
What is Data Visualization
First things first, to answer your question on what is data visualization software we present you an article called What is Data Visualization and Its Role for Business Growth. Read it for a more comprehensive outlook on what you’ll be dealing with, and if you’re into data visualization software comparisons take a look at our Comparative Analysis of Data Visualization Tools: Google Data Studio, Power BI, and Tableau.
In short, data visualization software is a tool that analyzes your company data and converts it into a fun, visual format like charts, graphs, dots, circles, and other interactive elements.
It helps marketing managers adjust their advertising strategies, allows executives to see the company’s growth and fall points, and showcases investors the current state of business and if it’s good – entices them to invest more.
So how do you find out what is the best data visualization software for your business model? Let’s find out in the next section.
How to Choose Data Visualization Software
Data visualization software is a serious business, and so is choosing the right one for your business. It may seem like a simple choice between a number of platforms, but since the process of data visualization looks something like the gif below (just kidding – it’s way weirder), the road of choosing the right data visualization tool will take a number of steps.
Five, to be exact. Let’s look at them:
Step 1. Assign a budget
We can say a lot about the importance of data visualization software versatility, serviceability, comprehensiveness, and a lot of other smart words but we all know it really starts with establishing a budget.
Are you a startup looking to visualize your app installs to share with your early investors, a medium-sized company adopting a data-driven approach or an international enterprise looking to expand its business?
If so go for a free data visualization tool like Google Data Studio as a startup, take a look at the PowerBI as a growing company, and definitely proceed with Tableau data visualization software if your sales are in hundreds of thousands or millions.
As you can see, in each case the budget and therefore the best-suited data visualization software will differ, so start by deciding how much time and money are you willing to allocate towards your data visualization needs.
Step 2. Establish a goal
Are you using data visualization tools to better understand and use the findings of your marketing campaigns, or are you planning on turning your whole company data-driven?
Answering this single question of “What am I looking to achieve with a data visualization software?” will help you narrow down your choices to the ones supporting your preferred format:
- Desktop-based Data Visualization
- Cloud-based Data Visualization
Google Data Studio is, for example, is purely cloud-based, but PowerBI and Tableau data visualization software although both have cloud versions, are mostly used on a desktop for extended functionality and the speed of loading. PowerBI also only runs on Windows, so you’d want to decide on how you’ll be using the software before purchasing.
Step 3. Determine the end-users
Now we’ve come to electing the people who will actually use the end product. We’ll be straight – data visualization is all fun and games when it comes to simple data visualization tasks, and all thunder and heavy rainfall if you work with complex equations, multiple data sources and large amounts of information.
That means you the next tip on how to choose data visualization software is to think of its end users. If your company has an analytics department with data scientists at hand you will have no issue dealing with Tableau or any other scientific data visualization software.
If not, and the data science training is not on your to-do list for the next quarter you might want to stick to data visualization that offers more usability and an intuitive interface to avoid failed adoption and wasted resources.
Step 4. Review the number of sources
How many sources are you planning to use? Your ad cabinets like Facebook only, or will you also add data from your CRM systems, your Google Adwords, Google Analytics, your email marketing, and so on and so forth?
Determining how sophisticated you want your data visualization types, reports, dashboards, and most importantly – sources to be will help you lend on the right software.
For example, Google Data Studio will seamlessly integrate with any Google product you might have, while using Google Suite for your operations will present you with a number of complications and extra expenses towards third-party tools if you decide to go with PowerBI.
Step 5. Foresee scalability
This is the last point on how to choose data visualization software list, but ironically, one you should never fail to consider. If you know that you, for example, as a dog-wear ecommerce company, are not planning to drastically expand into hardcore data science in the foreseeable future, there is no need to go for the most expansive or expansive to begin with data visualization tools.
Try free data visualization software like Google Data Studio or 60-day free PowerBI plan. But if you are expanding in the data visualization department and looking to expand even more – go for heavy-armed scientific data visualization software. Google Data Studio might be great at the beginning of your data visualization journey, but it sure doesn’t scale well in case you decide to expand your horizons.
The more data you’ll want to process, the more sophisticated software it should be operated by, so don’t make a mistake of choosing an affordable $9,99 a month PowerBI plan, only later to realize you now have to make sure computers in all 5 oversees analytics departments of your have to run on Microsoft without exception 😉
Now that you’ve learned the five steps on how to choose data visualization software, check out our expert comparison articles on the best data visualization software:
- Google Data Studio vs. Power BI: A Comparative Analysis of Visualization Tools
- Power BI vs Tableau: Data Analytics To Consider | InsightWhale
- Google Data Studio vs Tableau: A Comparative Analysis of Visualization Tools
And when you need help choosing or setting one up, remember who to call 😉