Sunday, 28 August 2011

Bubble chart and its usage

Writing your first ever blog on a subject topic like bubble chart and its use in business is not a bad idea. So here comes the blog!!!!

Reason of writing on this topic comes from the fact that most of us might hear about bubble charts but neither much familiar with it nor even know its use in business. So basically a Bubble chart is a variation of a Scatter chart in which the data points are replaced with bubbles. A Bubble chart can be used instead of a Scatter chart if your data has different data series, each of which contains a set of values, say for example number of product, sales and market share of each product. Chart building for bubble chart can be done in different ways like

o Single-Series bubble chart categorized vertically or horizontally.

o Single-Series bubble chart scatter plot

o Multi-Series bubble chart

o Multi-Series bubble chart grouped by series

o Multi-Series bubble chart scatter plot etc etc..

Also different other techniques can be used in bubble chart like axis management, positing, controlling bubble size n others but Rather then going deep into how to create a bubble chart (that we all can easily find out J) it would make more sense to talk about what’s d use of bubble chart, so Bubble charts are often used to present financial data. Use a Bubble chart when you want specific values to be more visually represented in your chart by different bubble sizes.

Bubble charts are popular tools for identifying and illustrating industry clusters. Essentially, these charts allow four different variables to be plotted within the same graph, making it easy to assess relative economic performance because they allow visual comparisons of well-understood measures.

Example to define the use of bubble chart with the help of a problem stating that:

Ø Determine Sales and customer satisfaction of a product by its different subsidiary?

Ø Where customer revenue falls along the annual projections?

Ø How different subsidiaries performed along the axis of growth and revenue?

Ø Value of revenue in monetary terms?

So, to solve this problem, bubble chart can convey all the different dimensions and measure more clearly. To build the diagram, the solution uses the data to determine the size, text, location, and color of the bubble. The bubble size and the bubble color shapes describe the information on the diagram. The shape of the bubble defines the subsidiaries of the product; the values in the Revenue column determine the size of the bubble shape itself. Sales Target and Growth percentage columns can be projected on x and y-axis. Therefore, bigger the bubble more would be the revenue so is the growth and the bubble’s color depends on the Customer Satisfaction column.

In this way depicting the data on bubble chart can be more clear and easy to understand.

References:

1.http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel-help/creating-a-bubble-chart-HA001117076.aspx

2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bubble_chart

Posted by

Neha Sharma

Finance