Visualization is quickly growing in importance in the world of big data. Businesses can no longer afford to operate without graphs and dashboards in their arsenal since they’re extremely useful for presenting and understanding complex information. All the technology surrounding us, and mobile devices, in particular, has turned into data sources that changed the way organizations collect and crunch numbers with the goal of generating actionable insights. The best way for humans to perceive complex data is by means of sight, so in this post, we’ll have a look at data visualization trends in 2021 and beyond that will help you get the most out of your analytics.
As per Tableau, one of the leading data visualization applications, organizations employing this kind of tools are 28% more likely to discover relevant information than those who rely on more traditional reports.
On another note, one study by the Wharton School of Business demonstrated that efficient data visualization could shorten meetings by 24%, and let’s be honest – no one likes too long of a meeting.
The growing trend of businesses starting to visualize data they have makes new tools and techniques emerge ever so often. Data analysts utilize them to go further than ever before and squeeze as much meaning and value as possible.
Before we get to the actual meat and potatoes, let’s have a quick look at…
Data visualization in a nutshell
In essence, what visualization does is it compiles various data into a form that can be easily read and interpreted. It’s about encoding information in a visual style, usually via the means offered by data visualization tools. The process turns what may otherwise be a rather incomprehensible set of numbers into something people are more familiar with and able to understand at a glance.
Data visualization is important for a number of reasons
In most basic terms, visualization delivers a neat way to determine and understand patterns in data via the means of various charts, graphs, and other formats.
Human brain is simply way more adept at processing these visual forms than any raw, unstructured data. Spreadsheets and reports just aren’t that efficient at conveying the message across.
When done properly, visualization will help you with:
- identifying areas that need improvement
- determining which factors have the biggest impact on the outcomes
- understanding how to best distribute products
- predicting sales volumes
- and plenty of other aspects specific to your niche
Now that we’ve laid the groundwork, let’s move on to discussing…
Data visualization trends for 2021
Data analytics can be made significantly more efficient when visualization is added to the process. Like pretty much any area of business, it too evolves, so it’s always a sensible practice to know and follow the latest trends in the field.
That said, here are data visualization trends to watch in 2021 and the upcoming future.
In Gartner’s estimation, data stories in visual form will be the most popular way of consuming analytics by 2025.
This really shouldn’t come as a surprise, since telling stories has been a practice among humas from the dawn of time. It’s somewhat natural to us to respond well to it. And what data storytelling does is it indeed tells you a story of some complex process taking place at your organization.
Real-time data visualization
Cloud technology is making it possible for organizations to view data in real-time from various sources.
Traditionally, many businesses relied on monthly or quarterly reports which hold the risk of rendering the data to be outdated by the time the document is out. Now, however, managers can start visualizing data in real-time to get a clear picture of what is currently happening, thus being able to react much faster to any potential dangers.
Social media data visualization
Another trend that will grow in importance in the time to come is businesses trying to use data visualization to communicate with their users and customers in social media channels.
Even though there’s a certain amount of risk stemming from the fact not all users will prove to be adept at reading various visualization formats, they can surely be provided with guidance and become better at it over time. At the end of the day, this won’t be anything particularly new after all, it’s just a matter of popularizing visual data even further.
Video has been seeing significant growth as a medium for consuming data-based content.
In some instances, text and graphs on their own can be insufficient in painting a complete picture. Advanced visualization in the form of video makes the information consumption more entertaining and further improves understanding of the underlying message.
Currently, video infographics have been a popular format for presenting data related to the Covid-19 pandemic, for example. This has been an effective strategy for making information easily consumable for a wide range of audiences.
Hybrid cloud services and data management
Utilizing cloud computing for data science purposes has been a common practice in the 21st century. Now, the trend we’re going to see is the emergence of hybrid services allowing organizations to connect their private clouds with public clouds to create a single framework.
This will be done with the goal of having a secure environment where organizations will be able to process and analyze data, and then present it in a relevant visual format.
AR & VR
Both augmented and virtual reality are transforming many industries and visualization solutions are no exception.
When applied to data visualization, they enhance understanding by allowing for extensive interaction with the data. Things like maps, games, models, and virtual events can be experienced in a novel and exciting way. This immersion in three-dimensional data may lead to the discovery of patterns previously unseen in 2D visualizations.
As we move forward, the sheer amount of data piling up will make it more and more difficult for data analysts to process.
AI will step in to automate, analyze, and discover patterns that would otherwise escape human data processing capabilities. For instance, as of now, there are companies deploying AI to develop visual representations of which topics are trending in the news.
Have these trends inspired you? Are you ready to get going? Take a look at The Best Data Visualization Software list we’ve previously compiled.
A look at the future of data visualization
These days, the mere collection of information from various sources no longer poses a challenge to data scientists. The increasingly important factor in the years to come will be the quality of its presentation.
Moving forward, we’ll see emerging technologies like augmented reality, virtual reality, and AI play a more significant role in effective data visualization.
Future trends will have machine learning and AI utilize their Natural Language Processing capabilities to generate insights. AR and VR will provide visual controllers making it possible for the viewers to explore data on a new level.
All this will lead to even more informed decisions ensuring business success. Business intelligence has a bright future for sure.
Data analysis and visualization have grown to become an integral part of the business realm that governs many aspects of our lives in this modern-day and age.
As organizations try to gain a competitive advantage by obtaining insights from large data sets, visualization turns into an increasingly important aspect of their operations. The market size for data visualization software is also predicted to grow by more than 11% annually, from $5.9 billion in 2021 to $10.2 billion in 2026.
As technology matures, so will the visual representations of information. In order to gain an upper hand, keep an eye on and perhaps even implement some trends in data visualization discussed here.
The better you understand data, the easier it will be for you to cope with any business challenges you may face.