chart with multiple data analysis

I want to create a chart to analyse multiple date selections:
the X-axis should plot the time
the Y-axis should plot the volume

in the chart itself I want to see the forecasted volume per product, but 
split out in actual sales and prospected sales.
thus per product (A, B, C, etc) I would like to see a bar per month, 
representing the total forecasted volume.

this bar should be divided into 2 data fields (actual sales and prospected 
sales)

does anyone know how to do this? Or is it even possible? I have been trying, 
but cannot get it right. it feels like the data I have in the excel sheet 
should be sorted or represented differently, but don't know how.

thanks in advance!
0
petervh (2)
2/7/2008 2:13:03 PM
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On Thu, 7 Feb 2008, in microsoft.public.excel.charting,
peter vh <petervh@discussions.microsoft.com> said:

>I want to create a chart to analyse multiple date selections:
>in the chart itself I want to see the forecasted volume per product, but
>split out in actual sales and prospected sales.

There's quite a large literature on choosing the best information 
graphics for a particular task. Often the best choice depends on the 
details of the data, not just the layout, but fortuitous features of the 
actual values (whether one is much greater than the others, etc.)

How many products are there?

It occurs to me that one technique you might find useful is the *small 
multiple*, many small copies of the same chart, each showing a single 
product, plus perhaps another small chart showing the total volume. The 
idea of making them small is so that the reader's eye can take them all 
in in a single glance: separate pages or screens is no good, and even 
the whole of one page can be too big. Little graphs can be surprisingly 
effective.

Which of several ways to choose to do this depends on your skills. Are 
you comfortable lining multiple graphs up using the Drawing tools like 
sizing and alignment? Then that's one way to do it. Alternatively you 
can design a "panel chart" in Excel that is one chart with several 
artificial lines and scales drawn in. (Google "Excel panel chart")

>thus per product (A, B, C, etc) I would like to see a bar per month, 
>representing the total forecasted volume. this bar should be divided 
>into 2 data fields (actual sales and prospected
>sales)

Is one always less than the other? Then you can use stacked bars. But if 
actual might be either more than prospected or less, then lines might be 
better.

Color choice can help a lot with either sort of arrangement. Because you 
have n times 2 series, you can have the actuals for A, B, C be red, 
blue, purple, green etc., and the prospected can be the same colors but 
a different shade: pale red, pale blue etc.

-- 
Del Cotter
NB Personal replies to this post will send email to del@branta.demon.co.uk,
    which goes to a spam folder-- please send your email to del3 instead.
0
del1907 (586)
2/7/2008 6:22:39 PM
thank you Del.

I've created 7 small charts with stacked bars (1 per product). it does the 
trick (giving an overview on the relation between prospect and actual sales), 
but graphically it is not that great.

I will investigate the panel chart option to check if that might enhance the 
visual image.

"Del Cotter" wrote:

> On Thu, 7 Feb 2008, in microsoft.public.excel.charting,
> peter vh <petervh@discussions.microsoft.com> said:
> 
> >I want to create a chart to analyse multiple date selections:
> >in the chart itself I want to see the forecasted volume per product, but
> >split out in actual sales and prospected sales.
> 
> There's quite a large literature on choosing the best information 
> graphics for a particular task. Often the best choice depends on the 
> details of the data, not just the layout, but fortuitous features of the 
> actual values (whether one is much greater than the others, etc.)
> 
> How many products are there?
> 
> It occurs to me that one technique you might find useful is the *small 
> multiple*, many small copies of the same chart, each showing a single 
> product, plus perhaps another small chart showing the total volume. The 
> idea of making them small is so that the reader's eye can take them all 
> in in a single glance: separate pages or screens is no good, and even 
> the whole of one page can be too big. Little graphs can be surprisingly 
> effective.
> 
> Which of several ways to choose to do this depends on your skills. Are 
> you comfortable lining multiple graphs up using the Drawing tools like 
> sizing and alignment? Then that's one way to do it. Alternatively you 
> can design a "panel chart" in Excel that is one chart with several 
> artificial lines and scales drawn in. (Google "Excel panel chart")
> 
> >thus per product (A, B, C, etc) I would like to see a bar per month, 
> >representing the total forecasted volume. this bar should be divided 
> >into 2 data fields (actual sales and prospected
> >sales)
> 
> Is one always less than the other? Then you can use stacked bars. But if 
> actual might be either more than prospected or less, then lines might be 
> better.
> 
> Color choice can help a lot with either sort of arrangement. Because you 
> have n times 2 series, you can have the actuals for A, B, C be red, 
> blue, purple, green etc., and the prospected can be the same colors but 
> a different shade: pale red, pale blue etc.
> 
> -- 
> Del Cotter
> NB Personal replies to this post will send email to del@branta.demon.co.uk,
>     which goes to a spam folder-- please send your email to del3 instead.
> 
0
petervh (2)
2/8/2008 2:36:01 PM
Reply:

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