Multi-Line Chart

Definition

A multi-line chart shows multiple data series, each as a line, on the same chart. A data series shows the relationship of one variable to another, often as movements or trends in the data over a period of time. Line charts summarize source data and typically are used to chart response values against discrete categorical values.
Example of a Multi-line Chart Indicator
example multi-line chart indicator
For a sample of the indicator data that was used to create this indicator, see “Sample Data Structure” for this indicator.

Usage Information

Data best suited for
Use a multi-line chart when it is critical to compare multiple values for two or more different categories at a given point in time or at a given state. It is critical that each line has a different color (which is done automatically) so that the lines can be clearly distinguished if they overlap. The multi-line chart is best used when the summarized values for the Y axis are relatively close together, or if the specific value is not as important to view compared to the relative trend.
Not suited for
The multi-line chart indicator supports displaying only one Y axis. Do not use this indicator if all of the lines cannot be represented by one Y axis. Also, it is preferable that the X-axis value be numeric data and not character data.
Target audience
This indicator type is appropriate for all user audiences. Most people find this indicator type familiar and easy to interpret.
Data aggregation support
This indicator type does not aggregate the indicator data.
Range support
Ranges are not supported.
Alert support
Alerts are not supported.
Link support
This indicator type can be used to define a link or as the destination of a link.For more information about defining an indicator with a hyperlink, see Adding Links to Indicators or Other Content.
Interaction support
  • Data filter support: This indicator type can be used as either a source or target indicator.
  • Interactive highlighting support: This indicator type can be used as either a source or target indicator.
For more information, see Adding Interactions between Indicators.
Filter multiple items support
Filtering multiple items is supported.For more information, see Supporting Multiple Selections in a Filtered Data Interaction.

General Settings

The General Settings section provides controls that support the following tasks:

Display Settings

The following display settings are used in the preceding figure. For more information, see “Sample Data Structure” for this indicator.
Display Setting
Selection Used for Figure
X-axis value
YEAR
Line group
COUNTRY
Y-axis value
sales
X-axis title
Set to Year
Y-axis title
Set to Sales
Note: The Scale Y axis setting adds the label (thousands) to the title.
Scale Y axis
This setting is selected.
Y-axis format
Set to $123,456
X-axis labels
Set to Rotate
You can customize the following display settings for this indicator:
  • (Required) From the X-axis value list, select the column in your data that you want to use for the X-axis value in the indicator. When you view your indicator data, the columns in the data set are described by the values in the Column Name column. The selections available in the X-axis value list are all of the values in the Column Name column.
  • (Required) From the Line group list, select the value that you want to use to define the lines in the indicator.
  • (Required) From the Y-axis value list, select the column in your data that you want to use for the Y-axis value in the indicator. When you view your indicator data, the columns in the data set are described by the values in the Column Name column. The selections available in the Y-axis value list are all of the values in the Column Name column.
  • In the X-axis title field, type the title to use for the X axis in the indicator. If you do not specify a title, the value that you selected from the X-axis value list is used by default. If you do not want a title, type a space in the field. If you select Scale X axis, a measurement label is added to the title.
  • In the Y-axis title field, type the title to use for the Y axis in the indicator. If you do not specify a title, the value that you selected from the Y-axis value list is used by default. If you do not want a title, type a space in the field. If you select Scale Y axis, a measurement label is added to the title.
  • Select Scale X axis if you want to scale that axis. When you make this selection, a measurement label is added to the X-axis title if the data is numeric. For example, if the X-axis title is set to Revenue and you select Scale X axis, the X-axis title is displayed as Revenue (millions).
  • Select Scale Y axis if you want to scale that axis. When you make this selection, a measurement label is added to the Y-axis title if the data is numeric. For example, if the Y-axis title is set to Revenue and you select Scale Y axis, the Y-axis title is displayed as Revenue (millions).
  • From the X-axis format list, select the format that you want to apply to the data on that axis. If you do not want to specify a format, select (none). When set to (none), the indicator uses the format that is used in the data source.
  • From the Y-axis format list, select the format that you want to apply to the data on that axis. If you do not want to specify a format, select (none). When set to (none), the indicator uses the format that is used in the data source.
  • From the X-axis labels list, select the style to apply to the data labels that are used on the X axis. Depending on your labels, one style might be easier to read than others.

Sample Data Structure

To create a multi-line chart, you must provide two variables (one for the X axis and one for the lines) and one measure (Y axis).
The following data sample is associated with the figure previously shown. Underneath each column heading is its associated display setting.
Year
(X-axis value)
Country
(Line group)
Sales
(Y-axis value)
1995
Canada
755785.60
1995
Mexico
518103.99
1995
U.S.A.
2240967.12
1996
Canada
769110.40
1996
Mexico
528722.40
1996
U.S.A.
2264190.73