What is a bar graph?
Sometimes known as a ‘bar chart’, the bar graph (plotted horizontally) and the column chart (plotted vertically) represent data by the proportional length of their bars.
Both graphs are used for comparing various categories over one variable (e.g., sales by product) or one category over time (e.g., total sales by year). Therefore, one of their axes shows the objects of your comparison, and the other, a scale of values.
Best uses for the bar graph
- Almost anything!
- Visualizing relative measures, frequency, performance
- Cleary showing sales over time
- Projecting future net income
- Highlighting incremental differences
How to make a bar graph with Vizzlo
Create a great-looking bar graph in seconds. Follow these easy steps:
- Click on a bar and drag the handles left or right to increase each side accordingly
- Add additional bars by clicking the “plus” buttons on each bar–alternatively, go to the “DATA” tab and click on “+ ADD BAR”
- Want to quickly enter a larger quantity of data? No problem, open up the “Spreadsheet” (tab “DATA” and copy and paste your data into the corresponding fields)
- Explore additional customization options on the “APPEARANCE” tab to add your finishing touches
Bar graph: pro tips
- Before importing or pasting your data into Vizzlo’s spreadsheet, make sure the number formats are matching your data source–click on the “wheel” icons in the spreadsheet columns to see the number formatting options
- For categories with longer text labels, try switching the layout from vertical to “Horizontal chart” (under the “APPEARANCE” tab) to give your text more room
- Vertical bar graphs should generally be sorted by ascending value, and horizontal bar graphs by descending value–easily update this for your chart by selecting from the “Sort by value” drop-down menu under “Layout settings”
- Take advantage of our advanced “ANALYSIS” functions to visualize growth, trends, projections and benchmarks
- See our Bar Graph Hacks on the Data Viz Guide for more pro tips in a handy infographic
Bar graph maker: key features
- Vertical and horizontal views
- Custom number formats and colors
- Custom bar width
- Custom axes and grid
- Optional labeling of individual values
- Analysis lines: growth rates (CAGR), reference lines, trendlines, and benchmarks
- Optional sorting by value
- Adjustable min/max values for y-axis
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