Creating a Bubble Chart in Power BI

In this blog, we build a bubble chart by making use of Power BI’s scatter chart. Thereafter we will implement clustering to get a quick overview of the structures within the data. Scatter charts show the correlation between two variables while clustering can assist by grouping your data into different subsets that are less detailed. Furthermore, the bubbles in a scatter chart, are simply a third data dimension showing the size of a specific data point in the scatter chart.

For the purposes of this example, we will look at Sales data from the Adventure Works dataset. The aim is to answer some questions related to profit and revenue. Such as, what products have high profit but low revenue?

So, without further ado, let’s jump into the steps and look at the output:

(Step 1) Select the Scatter chart visual from Power BI and drag in the required field visuals

This step is pretty straightforward, we will be looking at Sales data so we need to have product level detail in the chart. We have our revenue and profit on our axes, and the cost of the product will be the size of the bubble.

Select fields for Bubble chart

(Step 2) Let Power BI do the clustering for you

Once you have a scatter chart,  you can simply click the ellipsis and select the “Automatically find clusters”

Automatically find clusters

(Step 3) Specify the number of clusters for your visual

After selecting the “Automatically find clusters” option, you will see a pop-up window. This is where you can specify the number of clusters for the visual. You can also change the default Description for this field.

Number of clusters

The new fields list will now have a Legend that contains the ProductName(clusters) that result from the automatic clustering.

Fields for Bubble chart in Power BIpower bi

Your final visual with the clustering should look something like this (depending on your data):

Clustering after automatic clustering Power BI

Interpreting the Clusters:

Cluster 1:

The data points in this cluster are coloured green and contain products that have relatively greater revenue and a relatively average profit margin.

Cluster 2:

The data points in this cluster are coloured black and contain products that have the lowest revenue, but the profit margin is quite dispersed. This cluster should be investigated in more detail. Because data points where you have very high profit and low revenue, mean low cost and high revenue. Which is good for the company.

Cluster 3:

The data points in this cluster are coloured red and contain products that have high revenue and high profits.

Cluster 4:

The data points in this cluster are coloured yellow and contain products that have lower revenue and average profit margins.

(Step 4 (Optional) ) Add a column chart from the clusters field to view individual cluster detail

You can add a column chart that will allow you to view your individual clusters. To do this, select the following fields for your column chart:

fields for clusters

The resultant output will be a Bubble chart that will change based on the column that you select from the column chart
Selecting individual clusters to analyse in bubble chart

For further detail, you can probably also create a table and select your clusters to see the exact products that fall in each cluster.

In Summary

Clustering in Power BI by using a Bubble chart is a very effective visual indicator of how your data is grouped together. In the case of Sales analysis, it can give good insights into the performance of your products.

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