Thursday, December 14, 2023

Lesson 14 - Area chart in Power BI Desktop

Area chart in Power BI Desktop resembles a filled line chart. Like line chart, Area chart are effective in showing trends and comparing data series while it highlights the areas beneath the lines which makes us to easily visualize the cumulative effect of data changes.

How to Proceed?

Step 1
Launch power BI desktop app and open the new report page and import the data required. 

Step 2
In “Visualizations” pane click on “Line chart” which is highlighted in the given figure

Step 3
Drag the data fields into “Field Section “that we want to compare and analyze. 

X axis:  Represents Year
Y axis: Shows the Number of Olympic Participants
Legend: The legend represents the different data series or categories which helps us to understand which line corresponds to which data elements.

Here we are showing Gender wise medal counts by Year

Step 4:

Customizing the appearance of Line chart
You can customize the appearance of the visual.  You can change Title, Font size, Style, Colours and Data labels. Click anywhere on the visual and set the below properties in the Format section.

In this visual, I chose background colour as blue and gave 87% transparency which reduces the intensity of the colour.
Give suitable title for the visual and customize the font size, colour and position of the title.
Chose Colours for the line to show different categories.

To add data labels to the area chart, click on the “Data Labels” section under “Visual”. Here you can choose which data to display in the labels and adjust their position, font, and color.

We can also change the shape and thickness of the line on the chart under the setting Visual--> Line--> Shape. Here for this visual we chose Solid line and thickness of the line as 3px

To Represent the shape of the data points in different style we have options under Visual--> Markers-->Shape

Step 5 Save the visual

Finally, your area chart is ready. Click save button to save the visual.

When to use Area chart?

Area charts can be used to show cumulative data changes over time, showing trends patterns also when we have to compare multiple data series or categories, we use area chart because it shows the series individually with filled areas which makes us clear.

  • While Area chart fills the area below the line in the chart, we can easily see which data points are above or below the average.
  • Area charts are helpful for scenarios like when data series intersect or overlap filled areas make it easy to distinguish overlapping series

  • Area chart are effective in showing time series data and not suitable for showing other types of data
  • Area charts become clumsier when used for large number of data points


Area charts are best in showing cumulative data trends, patterns and comparing multiple data series. It will clearly represent the data trends over time.

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