Data Visualization Software

By Nikolina Cvetićanin June 28, 2021

Data is far from boring, especially with the different tools you can use nowadays to make your data more appealing and creatively displayed. Data science is constantly evolving, and some Big Data stats show that there are 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created each day. Clearly visualizing all that information is therefore crucial. Translating your business metrics into coherent graphs using business intelligence tools can better present the goals you have set for your company and its overall performance.

Choosing the right data visualization software can be a bit overwhelming, which is why we have reviewed some of the most popular names in the industry to make your search easier. In the following article, you will be able to check all of their key features, strengths, and weaknesses, as well as pricing information, all in one place. By the end, you should have a clear understanding of what makes each product stand out from its peers.

The Best Data Visualization Software in 2021

  • Excellent visualization capabilities
  • Multiple data-source connections
  • Mobile optimized
  • At least one Tableau Creator license required
Best price $12/mo/user
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  • Beginner-friendly user interface
  • Eye-catching visualization
  • Extensive range of charts, graphs, and gauges
  • 3D graphics not included in visualizations
Best price GET QUOTE
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  • Integrations with major social media platforms
  • Easy-to-understand and customizable reports
  • Real-time monitoring
  • Limited sources on the basic plan
Best price $119/mo/user
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  • Live chart updates
  • Free subscription plan
  • Substantial editing options
  • Data stored on Datawrapper server with the free plan
Best price FREE
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  • Integration with other MS tools
  • Strong support community
  • Extensive database connectivity
  • Potentially difficult to learn
Best price $9.99/mo/user
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  • Pre-defined reports for new users
  • User-friendly and affordable
  • Smart assistant
  • Limited features on the free plan
Best price $24/mo
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  • No coding skills required
  • Free plan available
  • More than 35 types of charts and 550 types of maps
  • Infogram logo included in free version
Best price FREE
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What Is Data Visualization and Why Do We Need It?

Data visualization is a way of representing your data in the form of a chart, graph, or something similar. This makes information easier to comprehend, which is crucial for identifying patterns and trends that affect your business. As more and more information is collected each day, familiarity with data visualization tools is becoming important for any successful career in finance, marketing, tech, etc.

The primary purpose of data visualization is to give you an insight into how your business is progressing and what you can expect in the future. The data itself is more valuable if it’s visualized as it makes communicating your business goals much easier.

The Benefits of Data Visualization

Data visualization can help you recognize patterns quickly and make informed decisions based on that. But that’s not all: Here are the other advantages of using data visualization programs within your company:

  • Track changes over time – This is the basic use of data visualization, but it is also one of its most important applications. By collecting necessary information regarding the past and the present of your operations, and visualizing it, you can get an idea of where your company can expect to head in the future. This should help your decision-making.
  • Correlation – Another great strength of data visualization is that it helps clarify the relationships between critical factors affecting your business.
  • Market examination – Analytics and visualization tools can collate information from different markets and tell you which audiences to focus on, and which to steer clear of.
  • Frequency –  This part of data visualization is closely related to tracking changes: It determines how often relevant events happen over a specific period.
  • Value and risk assessment – Once you visualize the data you have, it’s much easier to denote the value and risk metrics and pinpoint areas that need more attention.

1. Tableau

" Best All-Rounder "

  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Excellent visualization capabilities
  • Multiple data-source connections
  • Mobile optimized
  • At least one Tableau Creator license required

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Excellent visualization capabilities
  • Multiple data-source connections
  • Mobile optimized
  • At least one Tableau Creator license required
  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

This candidate for the most popular data visualization software comes in three main forms: Tableau Desktop, Tableau Server, and Tableau Online. There’s also Tableau Mobile, as well as the Tableau Public version, which is completely free, and you can use it to share your data publicly. Tableau’s intuitive business intelligence tools allow users to access and analyze key data easily.

Tableau products incorporate different visual analytics tools:

Data Connections

Tableau has the ability to connect to hundreds of data sources without any additional coding. Some of its compatible apps are SQL Server, Salesforce, Google Analytics, Google Sheets, PDF readers, Dropbox, and more.

The Drag-and-Drop Feature

This feature allows you to build data visualizations with a few clicks and integrate data with ease.

Secure Collaboration

Tableau Server and Online will let you share key insights securely.

Mobile-Optimized Dashboards

Tableau has a Device Designer tool that allows users to customize dashboards and optimize them for phone or tablet viewing.

In-Memory and Live Data

The Tableau platform will let you switch between live connections and already extracted data. You can also set up automatic updates and notifications for any failed connections.

Pricing

This data visualization software has three main subscription plans: Tableau Creator, Tableau Explorer, and Tableau Viewer. Each plan is focused on individual users and includes product upgrades, maintenance, and support, with no hidden fees.

  • Tableau Creator – For $70 per user per month (billed annually), it’s designed for power users and analysts.
  • Tableau Explorer – For $35 per user per month (billed annually), it’s for users that wish to explore their data, but don’t need full transformation capabilities or raw-data-source connections.
  • Tableau Viewer – For $15 per user per month (billed annually), it’s for viewing and interacting with data using visual dashboards.

One of the things that makes Tableau one of the best data visualization tools or providers is the level of customer support it offers. Apart from the standard FAQ section, knowledge base, and contact email, there are some advanced support programs included with specific licenses.

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2. Sisense

" Best for Developers "

  • Pricing
    N/A
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Beginner-friendly user interface
  • Eye-catching visualization
  • Extensive range of charts, graphs, and gauges
  • 3D graphics not included in visualizations

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Beginner-friendly user interface
  • Eye-catching visualization
  • Extensive range of charts, graphs, and gauges
  • 3D graphics not included in visualizations
  • Pricing
    N/A
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

Sisense is a BI platform that gives users access to comprehensive tools for analyzing and visualizing huge data sets. This business intelligence and data visualization tool implements in-chip technology and an in-memory database to store large amounts of data on a single server. The drag-and-drop interface allows you to transfer these data sets from multiple sources and analyze them or create dashboards. Another strong point is its integration with cloud-based applications such as Salesforce and Zendesk.

Among its many assets, there are a few that really stand out:

  • Connecting with any data source
  • Embedded analytics functionality
  • Self-service dashboards
  • Data transformations with custom code
  • Sisense Themes for rapid customization
  • Built-in chart widgets
  • Low-code or no-code tools
  • Easy integration with other products

On top of all the data visualization software features Sisense has, it also lets users choose between on-premise, cloud-based, hybrid, or Linux/Windows deployment.

If your company needs to do big data analysis, Sisense will have you covered with its ElastiCube technology. This high-performance analytics database can handle terabyte-scale data, even if your hardware isn’t top-notch. ElastiCube is disk-stored, so its size limits don’t depend on your RAM, only loading and unloading data to and from RAM upon demand. Sisense is most definitely in the running to be the most advanced data visualization software, and this product makes it stand out among its competitors even more.

Pricing

With Sisense, there are three pricing tiers to choose from, depending on the number of users you have. The Basic tier is for up to ten users, the Business one is for up to 50 users, and Business+ allows an unlimited number of users. What’s good to know is that companies can upgrade or downgrade their pricing plans at any moment.

Unfortunately, this data visualization software has no general quote displayed. Instead, the company makes personalized annual licensing subscription plans to fit every customer. You can request a free quote on its pricing page or check out the 14-day free trial before consulting Sisense about the costs. You can reach customer support by submitting a ticket or emailing them directly. Sisense also offers additional support channels, including video tutorials, community and developer forums, etc.

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3. Whatagraph

" Best for Digital Agencies "

  • Pricing
    3/5
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Integrations with major social media platforms
  • Easy-to-understand and customizable reports
  • Real-time monitoring
  • Limited sources on the basic plan

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Integrations with major social media platforms
  • Easy-to-understand and customizable reports
  • Real-time monitoring
  • Limited sources on the basic plan
  • Pricing
    3/5
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

If you’re looking for a reliable automated solution for creating data visualizations, Whatagraph might be the right choice. You can create multi-source reports that are easy to comprehend from all perspectives – not just the marketing one. You can also customize those reports to match your brand.

Whatagraph will help keep all your valuable metrics in one place and build visually attractive marketing reports. Some of the biggest assets of this platform are:

Great Number of Integrations

Whatagraph has 30+ integrations, including all major social media platforms and digital marketing tools (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, Google Ads, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc.)

Real-Time Monitoring

With this data visualization software, you can track expenses and check how well you’re doing on the way to your business goals.

Cross-Channel Reporting

Compile data from different channels and make a straightforward summary report for your clients.

Automated Reports

Your clients can get automated reports and access them at any moment. All you have to do is select the desired creation frequency.

Custom Branding

This feature will allow you to build customized reports by adding different colors, logos, or even custom domains, which is a nice personal touch.

Even though Whatagraph is not free data visualization software, it does have a free trial, which does not require any card information and lasts for seven days.

Pricing

Potential subscribers can pick one of the following plans:

  • Professional – $119 a month (billed annually). This plan is designed for individual marketers, with one user license and 15 data-source integrations.
  • Premium – $279 a month (billed annually). This plan allows for a wide integration range and requires intermediate knowledge of data visualization technologies; therefore, it’s the best option for expert marketing teams. It comes with a license for five users and 50 data sources, a dedicated account manager, custom branding, and multisource reporting.
  • Growth – $699 a month (billed annually). This pricing package is ideal for large marketing companies that require custom data-source integration. It comes with an unlimited number of users, all features from the previous two options, and a public API.

For any inquiries, Whatagraph has a help center section on the website, but you can also contact them via phone or email. Whatagraph keeps track of all data visualization software trends, and it can assist you in improving your overall business performance.

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4. Datawrapper

" Best for Bloggers and News Publicists "

  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Live chart updates
  • Free subscription plan
  • Substantial editing options
  • Data stored on Datawrapper server with the free plan

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Live chart updates
  • Free subscription plan
  • Substantial editing options
  • Data stored on Datawrapper server with the free plan
  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Datawrapper is a tool designed for journalists, bloggers, and software developers. With it, you can copy data from Google Sheets, Excel, or the web, directly and create different charts and maps. Datawrapper’s library contains more than 1,000 maps; in case it doesn’t have one for your particular area of expertise, its designers can create it for free. This software will allow you to create interactive data visualizations for any imaginable purpose.

After our review, we summed up Datawrapper’s most important benefits:

Beginner-Friendly Interface

The greatest thing about this tool is that it doesn’t require any previous web design knowledge. Anyone can quickly learn how to present their data as there are design defaults to help them.

Export Visualizations

You can use Datawrapper to export any visualization as a PNG, SVG, or PDF file.

Live Updates

Datawrapper allows users to update tables and charts automatically without having to republish them.

Unlimited Visualizations

With this open-source visualization software, you can create an unlimited number of charts, maps, and tables, even with the free plan.

Shared Folders

Using Slack and Teams integration and shared folders, you can always see what your team is creating and follow their progress.

Pricing

Datawrapper has three membership options suitable for all types of users:

  • Free – This option lets you publish an unlimited number of visualizations completely free of charge. You can also download all those visualizations as images and incorporate them into your presentations. If you are looking for free software for data visualization, we recommend this Datawrapper package.
  • Custom – $599 a month or $5,990 per year. This option includes ten user licenses and full design customization. With it, you can export visualizations as PNG, PDF, and SVG files.
  • Enterprise – The pricing for this option is tailored individually, but you can request a quote. Apart from the previously mentioned features, this plan also offers on-premise installation and self-hosting, so that users can host the visualizations on their own infrastructure.

In case you need a helping hand or have some specific inquiries about Datawrapper’s data visualization software products, you can reach out to their support via email or live chat.

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5. Microsoft Power BI

" Best for Large Companies "

  • Pricing
    5/5
  • User-friendliness
    3/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Integration with other MS tools
  • Strong support community
  • Extensive database connectivity
  • Potentially difficult to learn

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Integration with other MS tools
  • Strong support community
  • Extensive database connectivity
  • Potentially difficult to learn
  • Pricing
    5/5
  • User-friendliness
    3/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Microsoft Power BI is a data visualization platform with tools that can help you quickly visualize data and share reports. You can share all your content by publishing it to the Power BI web dashboard.

Among the characteristics that make Microsoft Power BI some of the best visualization software, here’s what caught our attention the most:

Informative Reports

These reports are a combination of different dashboards connected by the same topic. This feature gives you better insight into meaningful data, and you can share the reports with other users.

Customizable and Shareable Dashboards

The dashboards in Microsoft Power BI are a combination of multiple visualizations, which you can share and print.

The Navigation Pane

The navigation pane contains dashboards, datasets, and reports; users can easily navigate through all of them with this feature.

Attractive Visualizations

One thing that differentiates the top data visualization tools from their competitors is detailed and eye-catching visualizations. Microsoft Power BI offers a wide range of them, including stacked column charts, pie charts, maps, funnel charts, area charts, and much more.

Vast Data-Source Library

This software has a ‘Get data’ feature, granting you access to sources such as Excel, PDF, Oracle, SQL Server, Power BI datasets, etc.

Pricing

This data visualization software comes in three versions: Power BI Pro, Power BI Premium per user, and Power BI Premium per capacity.

  • Power BI Pro – $9.99 per user, per month. This plan would allow you to share and publish reports with a model-size limit of 1 GB with eight data refreshes on a daily level. It also includes a mobile app.
  • Power BI Premium (per user) – $20 per user per month. This option comes with a 100 GB model-size limit, as well as 48 daily refreshes, paginated reports, and some additional artificial intelligence features.
  • Power BI Premium (per capacity) – starts at $4,995 a month. On-premise reporting and multi-location deployment management should be a part of all advanced data visualization tools, and this pricing plan includes them. You will also get a 400 GB model-size limit.

Microsoft Power BI has a great support community, an online database with various guides, and an FAQ section. In case you wish to contact them directly, there is an option to submit a support ticket.

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6. Zoho Analytics

" Best for Beginners "

  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Pre-defined reports for new users
  • User-friendly and affordable
  • Smart assistant
  • Limited features on the free plan

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Pre-defined reports for new users
  • User-friendly and affordable
  • Smart assistant
  • Limited features on the free plan
  • Pricing
    4/5
  • User-friendliness
    5/5
  • Data Connectivity
    5/5

Zoho Analytics can help you analyze data and create dashboards and reports within just a few minutes. If you don’t know much about tools for data visualization, this solution will be a great start. It’s easy to use, and even non-technical users can make attractive visualizations with it.

Even though this is an easily operated tool, it comes with lots of benefits and interesting assets such as:

AI-Powered Assistant

Zia, the smart assistant, will answer any of your questions using natural language processing and machine learning.

Drag-and-Drop Interface

This tool lets you create dashboards and reports effortlessly.

White Label Solutions

Zoho Analytics provides you with embedded business intelligence options which can be integrated with your own product.

Smart Data Alerts

One of the handy features of this interactive visualization tool is data alerts. These alerts will let you know about any crucial changes in your metrics so that you can take immediate action to address them.

Data Security Tools

Zoho takes security seriously and uses strong encryption protocols.

Pricing

Besides the 15-day free trial, Zoho Analytics has five payment plans:

  • Free – The forever-free plan is limited to two users, 10,000 rows of data, but has unlimited reports and dashboards.
  • Basic – $24 a month (billed annually). This option is suitable for two users and, with it, you can create an unlimited number of reports and dashboards. You can use more than 100 sources to analyze data and create data visualizations.
  • Standard – $48 a month (billed annually). This plan works for five users and includes data alerts, data snapshots, and other advanced features. Access logs keep track of all the users accessing your account.
  • Premium – $115 per month (billed annually). The Premium plan can fulfill the needs of 15 users. You can rebrand the reports with your logo, generate private links for your reports, and get full access to activity logs.
  • Enterprise – $455 per month (billed annually). This plan is designed for mid-sized or large businesses and licenses up to 50 users. It includes the live chat option and 5x faster dashboard and report loading.

For any questions regarding this data visualization software, customers can reach out to Zoho’s support specialists via the email address displayed on the website. There is also a phone number for any sales inquiries.

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7. Infogram

" Best for Marketers "

  • Pricing
    5/5
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Things we liked / disliked:

  • No coding skills required
  • Free plan available
  • More than 35 types of charts and 550 types of maps
  • Infogram logo included in free version

Things we liked / disliked:

  • No coding skills required
  • Free plan available
  • More than 35 types of charts and 550 types of maps
  • Infogram logo included in free version
  • Pricing
    5/5
  • User-friendliness
    4/5
  • Data Connectivity
    4/5

Infogram is a web-based tool used to create and customize charts, infographics, maps, and other types of data visualizations. It helps users communicate through data by employing visualization techniques to make the relevant numbers easily understandable. It’s a top choice for analysts interested in free data visualization tools, as it has a free plan with lots of great features.

Here is an insight into some of the features that make Infogram such a good solution:

Interactive Reports

Create interactive reports and customize them for your audience.

Expansive Graph and Map Library

There are more than 35 chart types and more than 550 maps you can use to visualize your data.

Export Possibilities

Infogram lets you export your visualizations in PNG, GIF, and PDF formats and share them on social media platforms.

Analytics Dashboard

By accessing this dashboard, you can see how the audience interacts with your visualizations.

Integrations

Infogram’s powerful tools help users build data visualizations by integrating with major media apps like Youtube, Giphy, Vimeo, and Iframe. You can also use it to import data from Excel, Dropbox, Google Analytics, and more.

Pricing

Infogram offers a lot of options to suit both individual users and large companies:

  • Free – This option is ideal for users that just want to try out this solution and create a few visualizations as this plan is limited to up to ten projects and up to five pages per project. You can choose from more than 37 interactive chart types and 13 maps and publish that content online. It is one of the best free data visualization software options you can find.
  • Pro – $19 a month (billed annually). If you need premium templates and images, this plan would be a good option. It allows you to have up to 100 projects, more than 100 templates, and 550+ maps. It also includes advanced editing features and privacy control tools to make sure your data is always secure.
  • Business – $67 a month (billed annually). This plan is excellent for anyone who needs a larger project library – up to 1,000 of them. You can remove the Infogram branding and use your own logo instead and restore any edits on your projects within up to 30 days.
  • Team – $149 a month (billed annually). This is some of the best visualization software for multiple users, as it incorporates real-time team collaboration and is suitable for three or more users. It allows you to store up to 3,000 projects in your library.
  • Enterprise – quote needed. Infogram’s most advanced plan starts with ten users and more than 10,000 projects they can create and store. Among other features, users get priority support with agents working around the clock to help them resolve any issues.

Infogram has different support channels, including phone, email, and live chat support.

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Our Methodology for Reviewing Data Visualisation Tools

We had to investigate many different options to make this comprehensive guide to the best data visualization programs available on the market. Our methodology has helped us narrow the list down to the best of the best. Here are the main factors we took into consideration:

Ease of Use

One of the deciding elements when choosing this kind of software is definitely its ease of use. The features need to be straightforward and the interface user-friendly, so that even inexperienced users can handle it. Prior to buying software for your company, you should also think about your employees’ skill level; otherwise, you might end up having to pay for additional training.

Data Connectivity

A staple with any decent data visualization platform is its ability to connect with external sources or extract information from them. Most of these solutions can extract data from SaaS applications, your on-premise or cloud-based databases, and even from in-house solutions. It’s crucial to explore these options when choosing a tool like this. Security is also a vital aspect of any visualization software, as the data your company creates and stores is a valuable asset. Choose a solution that offers layered security.

Pricing

As the market is increasing and there are plenty of options available, the prices for visualization solutions can vary. Since customers are always interested in getting a better deal, one of the biggest factors is a product’s affordability. With that in mind, we have reviewed and analyzed different pricing plans and their features.

FAQ

Is Excel a data visualization tool?

Excel is mostly known for its data analysis functions, but it also incorporates a number of visualization options. You can use Excel to create different charts and graphs, or even combine them into a stacked chart. One of its main features is flexibility which makes it convenient for most users.

Is Tableau a data visualization tool?

Tableau is one of the most popular tools you can use for data visualization. Although it’s primarily used for business intelligence, it has a broad spectrum of assets and can be used for other tasks as well. With it, you can create different types of charts and graphs to illustrate your business progress and future goals, and you can do it all using straightforward drag-and-drop functions. Tableau has various products with unique features to suit the needs of numerous clients.

What is data visualization software?

It can be defined as a tool that transforms your company data into a visual format such as a graph, chart, or any other composition. It helps individuals and companies follow their progress and review their strengths and weaknesses. They can adjust business strategies based on the visually presented data and establish future targets.