How to create a Motion Chart in Tableau

Motion Chart

About how to create a Motion Chart in Tableau

This article contains a video tutorial and written steps about How to create a Motion Chart in Tableau, how to build specific types of charts and how to use them in your day-to-day reporting activity.

A Motion Chart shows the animated progress of our data over time, it is like a line chart with the additional usefulness of seeing how the specific measure chosen evolves through time. The visual impact gives our data more significance and makes it easier for the end-user to follow the progress.

Step 1 – Connect to Data

→ In Tableau Desktop, connect to your data source Sample – Global Superstore data provided by Tableau

Step 2: Create a group with the products in focus

→ Create a group named “Product Name (group)”:

Click on the Product Name field and select Create – Group

Group together “Avery Binders”, “Staples” and “Bookcases”

Group the remaining products as “Other”

Step 3: Build the visualization

→  Create a line chart using Shipping Cost and Ship Date:

Drag “Shipping Cost” to Rows

Drag “Ship Date” to Columns displayed as Month, Continuous

→ Bring Product Name (Group) onto the Color Mark:

Drag “Product Name (Group)” to Color

→ Bring a copy of Product Name (Group) as a filter:

By holding the Ctrl Key, drag “Product Name (Group)” from Color to Filters shelf

→ On the Pages shelf, show the Ship Date dimension:

Drag “Ship Date” onto the Pages shelf

Click on the pill menu and change the level of detail to Month

→ Go to the Month (Ship Date) Card and click the Play button

Edit the speed of the animation by adjusting the menu on the lower right side of the Card

Add historical details by selecting the “Show history” tick

Add visual lines across time by selecting all Marks and Show Trails

→ Format the Marks as desired, click the Play button and congratulation, you’ve successfully built a motion chart.

Watch the video tutorial here:

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