Normalized area chart

A normalized area chart shows changes to the contribution of each category in a measure value over a time interval. Areas are highlighted in different colors and located above each other. The chart shows the percentage of areas and not their absolute value. The width of an area indicates its ratio to the total amount represented as 100%. For example, the percentage of different expenses in the total budget amount.

normalized-area-chart

Source table
MonthGasolineRentFoodUtility bills
January 2019100600300500
February 2019150600250700
March 2019100600450400
April 2019120600370510
May 2019100600300530
June 2019130600310600
July 2019150600330510
August 2019120600250550
September 2019110650380500
October 2019120650300550
November 2019130650310540
December 2019100650400550

This type of chart is used to show a change to the proportion of categories, while their totals are not critical. For example, to show how the percentage of product categories changes in the total sales amount.

normalized-area-chart-subcategory

Source table
MonthHome appliancesHousehold goodsHousehold cleaners
January 2019128K55K26K
February 201997K79K18K
March 2019187K105K41K
April 2019188K137K34K
May 2019230K121K43K
June 2019256K162K59K
July 2019284K206K67K
August 2019409K204K72K
September 2019314K209K86K
October 2019324K262K79K
November 2019385K238K101K
December 2019451K307K111K

Sections in the wizard

Section
in the wizard
Description
XDimension. Only one field can be specified. This dimension is usually a date. In this case, make sure that the Date data type is specified for this field in the dataset. This is required for correct sorting and signature display. For better visualization, you can group dates into weeks, months, and years (to learn more, see Field settings).
YMeasure. You can specify multiple measures. If you add more than one measure to a section, the Colors section contains a dimension named Measure Names.
ColorsDimension or the Measure Names field. Affects the color of lines. Measure Names is removed by deleting measures from the Y-axis.
SortingDimension or measure. A dimension from the X and Colors sections or a measure from the Y-axis can be used. Affects the sorting of values on the X-axis or areas along the Y-axis. The sorting direction is marked with an icon next to the field: ascending or descending . To change the sorting direction, click the icon.
SignaturesMeasure. Displays measure values on the chart. If multiple measures are added to the Y section, drag Measure Values to this section.
SplitDimension. Splits a chart horizontally by the selected dimension's values. The maximum number of splits per chart is 25.
FiltersDimension or measure. Used as a filter.

Creating a normalized area chart

To create a normalized area chart:

  1. On the DataLens home page, click Create chart.
  2. Under Dataset, select a dataset for visualization.
  3. Select Normalized area chart as the chart type.
  4. Drag a dimension from the dataset to the X section. The values are displayed in the lower part of the chart on the X-axis.
  5. Drag one or more measures from the dataset to the Y section. The values are displayed as areas along the Y-axis.
  6. Drag a dimension from the dataset to the Colors section. Colored areas will indicate the share of an individual category in the total measure value.

Recommendations

  • If the values of the categories contain a large amount of text, try to reduce it. Then the signatures on the diagram will look more accurate. You can use string functions in the calculated fields or conditional operators CASE.

  • Don't display more than 3-5 areas on the chart.

  • To make it easier to track the dynamics, place the largest or most important categories closer to the chart base. To do this, drag the desired measure to the Sorting section or set up their order in the Y section. For example, when comparing budget expenses.

    Chart example

    normalized-area-rec-1

    To monitor the budget spending dynamics by the Gasoline category, place it close to the chart base.

    Chart example

    normalized-area-rec-2

    If there is another important category, place it by the upper boundary of the chart. This way the areas will have clear boundaries to help visually compare their values. For example, to compare Utility bills and Rent.

    Chart example

    normalized-area-rec-3

  • You can split a chart by dimension into a number of small charts that are convenient to compare to one another. To do this, drag a dimension from the dataset to the Split section.

    Chart example

    normalized-area-chart-split

  • To display the absolute values of variables, use a stacked area chart.