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Posts: 24
Reply with quote  #1 
Hey guys,

I'm trying to find the best way to visualize a long list of products and customers so the user can get a quick snapshot into which ones need re-alignment depending on the variable (Dummy example attached).

The first question would be: Can you use different axis ranges for each variable? I have seen Steve use different ranges, but in examples of say dollars vs % vs some other metric. Mine are all dollars. 

Keep in mind though that the main purpose of the graph is to compare products by each of their variables, and get a sense of correlation between say product ranking in sales, and the rest of the variables. It is not to compare variables by product. So, we should be able to quickly answer if the products with the greater direct costs are usually the ones with the greater sales...if not, which ones stick out so we can address and or re-align.

What better methods do you recommend to visualize this?

 Thanks! I appreciate your input.


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Posts: 823
Reply with quote  #2 

In case you don't already know, what you've designed is called a Table Lens display. It is used to examine potential correlations between multiple quantitative variables. Unlike a scatterplot, which is restricted to two variables only, a table lens display can accommodate many variables.

You have handled the scales properly. Even though the three variables are all expressed as dollars, they have different ranges and therefore should have different scales. As you've pointed out, the purpose is not to compare the different variables to one another for individual items, so the scales do not need to be consistent. If this were a small multiples display, the scales would need to be consistent, but it isn't.

Stephen Few

Posts: 24
Reply with quote  #3 
I didn't know the name of it. Thanks for the feedback Steve!
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