Data visualization is defined as the graphical representation of data and information. It provides a way to make patterns and trends in data more accessible by using visual elements such as graphs, charts, and diagrams created with data visualization tools.
This article provides an overview of the 5 biggest data visualization design trends of 2022. By visually conveying complex information in bitesize formats, you can significantly add value and make it easier for your audience to digest large data sets.
What Is Data Visualization?
Data visualization is a term that refers to any effort to help people understand data by presenting it in a visual format. With data visualization techniques, patterns, trends, and correlations that might usually go unnoticed in numerical data–particularly to the untrained eye–can be more easily exposed and recognized.
Types Of Data Visualization
Data can be visualized in ways other than simple graphs and statistical charts.
Some of the most frequently used are:
- Bubble chart
- Bar chart
- Line and areas chart
- Radar and pie charts
Data Visualization Design Trends
Data visualization provides us with a quick, clear understanding of information. In 2022, we’re witnessing interesting and engaging new ways to design and share complex data with any type of audience.
1. Survey Data
Survey data is gaining popularity more than ever. A decade ago, face-to-face surveys, telephone surveys, and paper surveys were immensely helpful in gathering feedback on anything and everything. It is now replaced by online surveys. Here’s a data collection form created to understand customer preferences in a cafe.
And here’s how the survey data can be visualized using SurveySparrow.
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2. Video Infographics
The data retention statistics for video are even more impressive than those for static visuals. Studies have found that people who are given video instructions retain data better than those who are given text-only instructions.
But there’s more to this—we instinctively know that video is easier for our brains to process, and we prefer it when given a choice. Around 67% of users prefer to learn about a new product or service through video rather than pictures or text.
A great example of a compelling infographic video is one from The Infographics Show, which attempts to demonstrate what the US would be like if only 100 people were living in the country.
Even though this three-minute video is full of figures and statistics, an excellent voiceover combined with a great script effortlessly conveys the entire message by breaking down the statistics into small chunks of information relevant to each category.
Just remember that the benefit of creating an infographic video to present information is to make complex ideas appear simpler. Try to keep your videos short and straightforward to achieve the best results.
3. Real-time Data Visualization
Real-time data visualization takes visuals to the next level by making it possible to update charts and graphs in real-time. Having real-time data available allows the audience to make more informed decisions based on current rather than historical data.
Real-time data visualization provides everyone with valuable insight into how several data sets are related to one another, allowing people to quickly identify and extract patterns and trends that would otherwise be hidden in raw data, or that are much more difficult to comprehend.
Take, for example, how Berlin’s public transportation system data chart shows the location of trains, trams, buses, and even available parking lots in real-time. This provides users access to up-to-the-minute information, facilitating decision-making regarding the best travel routes.
Color gradients, also known as color transitions, are a gradual alterations from one color to another. With the ongoing evolution of mobile device screen resolutions, designers have been exploring new ways to use gradient colors, particularly for the purposes of data visualization.
Using the same colors for everything in your data visualization is confusing and unengaging. However, contrasting colors and gradients can make graphs pop in presentations, grab viewers’ attention, and emphasize important information.
A great example is how this US population map features effective color gradients. As shown on the image, bright colors represent low values, while the dark colors represent high values, making it easier to see at a glance which states have the highest population density.
5. Mobile-friendly Visualizations
Mobile devices accounted for 56% of internet traffic in February 2021. Mobile-friendly data visualizations are becoming increasingly important as more people consume information on the go.
Mobile devices also have unique features that can enhance the consumer experience. One of the most commonly used is the global positioning system (GPS).
An excellent example of data visualization for mobile devices is Google’s Coronavirus news tool, which monitors the Covid-19 pandemic. Thanks to effective mobile optimization, the user can zoom in on any part of the globe, including their current location, and get detailed information about the disease’s prevalence in that area. The larger the circle, the more cases there are, which makes it easy to assess numbers at a glance.
Illustration is booming in graphic design, social media, and web design. Many brands, businesses, and creators recognize the popularity of illustration and digital art, and are incorporating hand-drawn elements into their website designs – including illustrated data visualizations.
Illustrations are visual stories that represent concepts, actions, text, or anything a brand wants to convey. They can be used independently, for example on an infographic, or used alongside an article or report to complement the text on the page.
An example of an effective infographic using illustrations is Planet Earth by artist Federica Fragapane. This chart features colorful data visualizations on the topic of animals and plants with the purpose of informing young audiences about different species and their general characteristics.
Using illustrations in data visualization ensures that the information is super accessible, and also has a personal touch–it feels like it’s created by a human for humans.
What are the benefits of data visualization?
Companies can quickly spot new opportunities, identify issues before they become problems, and create new products and revenue streams using effective data visualizations. Presenting data visually can also help inform, educate or persuade customers, clients and investors.
Other benefits include:
- Facilitates decision-making: Visual information is more accessible to process than written information, allowing for faster decision-making. Using a chart, graph, or other visuals to summarize complex data enables the audience to absorb information quickly.
- Improves productivity: Because visualizing data leads to a faster understanding of information, it can result in shortened meetings, reduced problem-solving time, and overall increased productivity.
- Supports storytelling: You can develop a new business language by using data visualization to tell your story to others. It’s a medium that allows you to easily create a narrative using graphics and diagrams, which can later be used to uncover new insights and engage others using visual analytics.
Create The Most Effective Data Visualization Designs In 2022
With data visualization, brands and companies can tap into the true potential of their data, and do so quickly and effectively. In turn, this can lead to enhanced quality and speed of decision-making and a measurable increase in productivity and efficiency.
Key points to consider when creating data charts include:
- Share relevant data: Always check your data to ensure it’s valuable, concise, honest, and accurate. Readers should be able to remember and use your data.
- Choose what works best for you: There are multiple types of graphs, charts, and other data visualizations. Choose the format that will best serve your company’s objectives and information. Pie charts, for example, illustrate portions of a whole, bar charts compare quantitative data, maps depict geographic representations of various phenomena, and infographics present complex stories.
- Make it engaging and understandable: Visuals must appear informative and easy to understand while also presenting a clear narrative to the users. Anyone looking at your chart or graph should be able to gain some practical information and learn something new.