5 Powerful Features of Tableau That Will Make Your Data Visualization Projects Stand Out



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5 Powerful Features of Tableau That Will Make Your Data Visualization Projects Stand Out

Data visualization just got easier

Visualization created by Tableau Software. Creative Commons license https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=74539785

The world is evolving at a rapid rate, more than we can ever imagine. The world is becoming more data-driven, and many industries are moving to data scientists and mostly, business intelligence to manage their database to aid better business decisions.

I had a six-month internship with a business intelligence agency, and from my experience with various companies, business intelligence is using advanced tools to analyze raw data and produce useful, broken down information to improve a company’s efficiency and also boost revenue.

Now, this is where data visualization comes into play. Businesses transact data in huge quantities and it’s usually complex to analyze in raw format. Presenting data in colorful graphs, charts, shapes, and plots improves the quality and accuracy of the datasets you are working with. The widely preferred tool for data visualization is Tableau.

Tableau is a data visualization software designed to query cloud databases, spreadsheets, machine learning algorithms, social databases, and other database advancements to create simple oriented graph-like data visualizations.

One special thing I love about Tableau is that you don’t need to have complex knowledge of Python or R to utilize this tool. With its friendly drag-and-drop interface, anyone can understand its functionalities. Having said that, here are five features of Tableau that will help you create better data visualization projects:

The Multipurpose Dashboard

The Tableau Dashboard. Screenshot by Author

Alright, so all modern technical tools come with a dashboard or as many also like to call it, a homepage. A good number of data and programming tools are equipped with dashboards where users can make quick changes, develop presets, and add customized formats and layouts, which helps increase the data analyst’s speed, accuracy, and effectiveness.

The Tableau software does more than the usual features you’d see in other data visualization tools. The two researchers from Stanford who developed the software saw the difficulty in data analysis and wanted a seamless process of visualization that can be easily be used by all data scientists, irrespective of specialization.

With an informative, advanced but easy-to-use dashboard, users can deploy interactive models, apply varieties of formats, and for analysts who simultaneously work on multiple projects; you can effectively transfer all the elements used in one workbook to another.

Data Extraction and Blending

Raise your hand if you have data stored in a database? I guess everyone has that. Okay, how about AWS? Excel? How about external company sources? Well, it turns out a good number of us have valuable information stored in these sources. From experience, it is challenging to always convert your resources with different tools (when need be I use Hevo Data) before deploying them to projects for analysis.

Tableau offers numerous data sources functionalities to connect and import data from various external resources. From big data, relational databases, on cloud data to Excel spreadsheets, most of these can easily be deployed by copying the file from the source then pasting them onto your Tableau worksheet.

To ease effectiveness, you need to download drivers to interact with the database and server details to connect to data connectors. Tableau supports a vast collection of data connectors so you don’t need to migrate. To name a few: Salesforce, SQL Server, Presto, FreshBook, GraphQL, MailChimp, Dropbox, Basecamp, Amazon S3, Apache Hive, XML, Smartsheet, and many more.

Enhanced data visualization functions

Data visualization’s major module represents data (figures, transactions, stats) with boxplots, diagrams, charts, tables, and any other form of illustration. Tableau offers different selections of visuals to pick from their huge collection of unique visualization functions.

Do you remember those flashy graphs and charts used to represent coronavirus statistics? It was pretty common back in 2020; I think everyone was used to seeing it. Those attractive illustrations that keep calling you to see the updates were not always catchy — It was basically complex raw figures and bulky texts.

As research proves, humans are more likely to learn and acquire knowledge with the use of visuals. Here’s an open secret, businesses love it when data analyst presents data (useful information) in simple, plain and colorful graphs and charts. Here are some visualizations provided by Tableau:

  • Motion chart
  • Histogram
  • Choropleth maps
  • Stacked column
  • Heat map
  • Highlights table
  • Bullet chart

Predictive analysis and forecast

Another powerful feature of Tableau is the alternative to use time series and predicting. I worked on a project once; the core objective was to predict the maximum number of customers that will purchase gas at a particular station.

Usually, it takes lots of time, coding, deploying, and organizing raw data from various business days to get a close to perfect prediction for a daily sales business. Your Python knowledge might stand up for you but it won’t be as effective and time-saving compared to the Tableau software.

Quick formation of trend lines and forecasting is made easy with Tableau’s reliable front-end and back-end servers. The drag and drop interface makes forecasting effective and productive as you can select relevant selections relating to what you’re working on.

Ask Data Feature

With Tableau Software supporting 94% of Data Warehousing functionalities, you can agree with me that professional users from all aspects of data science handle their data visualization projects on this powerful software. Tableau added a feature where users can interact, seek solutions, and connect to share ideas with so many people on board.

The Ask data feature. This feature makes understanding data much easier — you don’t need to keep a data science encyclopedia (if they have that) near your workspace. There is a search panel just like Google, but just for data-related queries. All you need to do is just type your query in your usual language — I’m talking English or Spanish, not Python or JavaScript and Tableau will give you the most important answers related to your query.

This feature is targeted to improve mutual communication among data science professionals and foster fresh insights and new patterns to solve problems.

Conclusion

If you ever tried data visualization and thought it was difficult to understand or too complex to apply modules to your project, you probably haven’t been utilizing the right tools. Tableau is a great software to simplify all your data visualization tasks, to create better and accurate analysis. The software comes with even more features and specifications to make the job of the data analyst accurate and efficient.

How to get started on the Tableau software? Tableau has four main product options to choose from: Tableau Prep, Tableau Desktop, Tableau Server & Tableau Online, and Tableau Mobile. You can choose your preferred product that suits your data needs.

In this article, we went through five key features of the Tableau software. You can easily familiarize yourself with these features and make your data visualization projects unique. If you need help getting started, you can check out these free tutorial videos provided by the Tableau platform.

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