This article describes how to create a simple dashboard in Displayr.
How do you create a simple dashboard that is interactive without using code? This article shows you how to create a simple dashboard in minutes using a worked example in Displayr.
You will learn how to import data, create and combine separate charts and visualizations into one dashboard, create and apply filters, and publish online. The resulting dashboard will look like this.
A Displayr document
Step 1: Import data into your dashboard
This article works through an example dataset, which you don't have, but you can follow the step-by-step instructions in this post using your own data set (the processes described here can be used with any dataset).
- Sign into Displayr and import your data.
There are many different ways of getting data into Displayr. See Lesson 2: Getting Data into Displayr for an overview.
Step 2: Set up a background or look and feel (optional)
Get creative and design a background for your dashboard e.g., add a block of color, a photo or a logo. The background used in this dashboard example is saved here. To insert a background image:
Click on the Page Master button in the toolbar, top right of the screen as shown below.
- From the toolbar, click the arrow beneath the Image button.
- Depending on the location of the image you can:
- To insert an image from your computer by clicking on Browse your computer.
- To insert an image from a web search or cloud drive you can click on Web Search / Cloud Drive.
- To insert an image from your company's Displayr Cloud drive, you can select Displayr Cloud Drive.
- Make sure the image fills the page by dragging it to size.
- Do this for every page type under Master you want to apply the background too.
- Once you have made all the desired changes, to return Normal view, click the button to the left of the highlighted button below.
Step 3: Create and modify a simple table
This next step adds a simple table to your dashboard.
- Under Pages on the left, click the + sign
- Enter the title on your page: Market research analysis software ranking. If you wish, you can the font size and color as well in the Object Inspector on the right using the Properties > Appearance.
- Locate the section in the bottom left of your screen called Data Sets.
- Drag across Software from the Data Sets tree onto the page.
- Click on the table and then the category Tableu. Note that it is spelled incorrectly. To fix this, press Toolbar > Rename and change the name to Tableau. These changes will be applied whenever the data in Software is used again (i.e., they are remembered in the data, rather than being remembered as formatting of the table).
- Click on the table and then the category Other, and click Toolbar > Delete
- Delete None and InHouse as well (tip: you can select both categories at once using Ctrl or Shift).
- Click on the % sign at the top of the table to select it and click Sort > Manipulation > Sort > Sort Rows By This Columns Values - Descending > %. This sort will also be remembered in the data (i.e., it is applied whenever this data is used again in any other tables).
- Click on the right-side of NET in the table, where you see the three horizontal lines, and slowly drag it back to the bottom of the table, releasing your mouse when you see the word Move appear.
If you have followed all the instructions, the table on the page should look something like this:
Step 4: Creating a crosstab
To turn the above table into a crosstab (e.g., cut it by geographic region):
- Click on the page in the Pages tree (top left corner of the screen).
- Press Toolbar > Copy and then Toolbar > Paste. This should have copied the entire page that you just created. If it didn't, have another go at the previous point.
- Slowly drag Region from the Data Sets tree, across on top of the table created in the previous step, dropping it in the Columns slot. You should now have a crosstab.
- Change the title at the top of the page to Market research analysis software by region.
The crosstab should look like this:
Step 5: Create a chart
The most straightforward approach to creating a chart is to
- Click on a table (i.e., like the one we have just created via drag-and-drop)
- in the Object Inspector on the right, click Inputs > Chart. Then you select the type of chart you want to turn the table into. In the example shown below, I have used a ranking plot.
Then, format the chart as you wish using the Object Inspector (the panel on the right-hand side). In the example below, I have used
- Chart > FORMATTING > Show Value: Yes - Below.
Step 6: Creating a visualization
In this next step, we introduce a different way of creating a chart. The core difference is that the chart created in the previous stage was primarily described for printing and viewing in PDFs and PowerPoint, whereas the visualizations are primarily for viewing in dashboards as they have information contained when you hover.
- Click back on the first page in Pages.
- Toolbar > Visualization > Bar Chart.
- In the Object Inspector, click on the drop-down menu for Data Source > Output in 'Pages' and select Software [table.software].
- Click on the table to the left of the page and press Toolbar > Hide. While it will stay on the screen, it gets grey stripes and will not appear when the document is exported. You may like to move this hidden table elsewhere (including off the page).
Step 7: Creating a custom visualization using R
When you use Toolbar > Visualization, even though we are using the menus, the actual chart is created using R, which is a statistical programming language. We can also create visualizations by writing the R code directly, which is described in this step.
- Under Pages, move the cursor to the last page, click the Insert a New Page symbol Title Only
- Give it the title Techniques used in market research
- Drag across Techniques from the Data Sets tree onto the page.
- Click on the table and then the category Decision trees ( e.g., CHAID and CaRT), press Data Manipulation > Rename (it should be in green) and change the name to Trees.
- Rename Structural Equation Modeling as SEM.
- Click on NET and select Data Manipulation > Hide (Rows/Columns).
- Toolbar > Hide and drag the table to be below the page. This is so that the viewer will not see the table when they are in viewing the finished product. But we need to keep the table here so that it will update when any filters are applied by the viewer (and hence update the visualization accordingly).
- Click Calculation > Custom Code, and paste the code below. Resize the R Output until the scrollbars go away. If you find the bubbles themselves do not resize, click on another page and go back to the first (we are working on this bug as I write...). This bubble chart is an open source package, so it is a bit inflexible (these more novel visualizations are always a bit hard to work with, as they have not been tested and refined like those available in the Displayr menus).
Step 8: Creating filters
- From the Data Sets tree, hold down the Ctrl key on your keyboard and click on Region, Role, How many years have you been working with data / information?, and In terms of qual and quant, would you describe yourself as.
- Click Anything > Filter > Filters from Selected Data and press OK. New variables will appear in the Data Sets tree in orange. You can now use these variables as filters (explained in the next section).
Step 9: Exporting the document as a dashboard
- Toolbar > Publish > Publish as Web Pages
- Select Anyone with a Link
- Click Publish and then Open in new tab.
Users can then export and filter this dashboard using the options at the top right of the screen.