November 26, 2018
The subject of #MakeoverMonday this week was a chart by Statistica looking at the cost of a night out in a variety of cities around the world.
The original visualisation was a stacked area chart:
What do I like about the original?
- It strikes a nice playful tone with the use of colours and the image, which is good for a less serious topic.
- The data is nicely sorted, so it’s obvious which are the most expensive and cheapest cities.
- The overall totals are shown clearly on at the ends of the bars.
- The bars are shown horizontally which makes the labels easier to read.
What don’t I like about the original?
- It’s a stacked bar chart, so you can only really compare the “Club entry” values, and the overall values because nothing else has a common baseline. This means that you miss patterns in the data.
I decided to do something similar to the original, but move from a stacked bar to four seperate bar charts so that you can easily see if there are any patterns in the individual series. I called out one of these in the heading of my chart. I kept the same ordering as the original (ordering by overall cost) even though I didn’t directly chart the total. One potential weakeness of my approach is that the overall total can’t be easily seen visually. I did consider adding a fifth bar chart for the total, but I don’t think this is really needed, and it would take up a lot of space which would make it harder to pick out smaller differences in the remaining four bar charts.