Column Charts

column charts

A column chart is incredibly simple to make: there are even column chart templates in Excel you can use to whip up a column chart in no time. Column charts are nothing more that vertically oriented bar charts. When the bars are horizontally oriented, they’re called a bar chart; when they’re vertically oriented, you’ve got a column chart.

Column charts feature rectangular bars of the same width with lengths that are proportional to the values they represent, with each bar representing a particular category. They’re used to show data changes over a period of time or to make comparisons between items. You’ll usually find that categories run along the horizontal axis and values along the vertical axis, with the length of each bar in the chart proportional to a specific category.

One variation of the column chart is called a “stacked column chart.” Here, the data points for each category are stacked instead of clustered. This works like a mini pie chart in that the viewer is able to see the portion of the total for each data point in the category.

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