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Learn how to visualise data in Numbers

Turn mundane data into something special with the help of charts and graphs

One of the best things about Numbers is that it’s a great place to manage all your data in a single area without having to use any third-party alternatives from the Mac App Store. Although having pages of data may be beneficial to you, it can be difficult to read and differentiate between when not labelled appropriately.

However, Numbers includes some fantastic chart and graphical options that help add a visual aspect to your data. Each chart you choose to use to represent inputted data can be heavily customised to suit your specific tastes or the data it’s based on. Use the following steps to learn how to completely visualise from top to bottom and create the perfect accompanying charts.


1. Input data

Create a table of data within Numbers, as you normally would do. Apply various colours and stylise the table using the toolbar located on the top of the program, if necessary.


2. Select a chart

Highlight all the data you’ve just entered and select the Chart option from the top of the menu. By default, you’ll be able to see the array of 2D charts that are available to use.


3. Interactive charts

Although a little more complex than standard charts, select the Interactive option if you want to use a chart that can be heavily edited and is generally more appealing to look at.


4. Edit data

After selecting the chart you want to use, your data will be applied to it and it’ll appear on the page. Select it and press Edit Data References to begin adding changes.


5. Background and borders

The right side panel will now be filled with customisation options. To add a background, select the appropriate drop-down, or use the menu underneath to add a border.


6. Edit data

If you double-click on a specific part, you’ll be able to edit the data it contains. A new Data section will appear on the right side of the app for you make further edits.


7. Move data

Select the Distance from Center option to move a portion of data away from the rest. This is a good choice to make if you want to highlight a specific section in a pie chart.


8. Change charts

If you don’t like the way your data is displayed, highlight the chart and select the Chart Type option to convert it into a completely different chart altogether.


9. Final edits and arrange

After making the final edits, arrange them to line up on the page. Guidelines will appear letting you know when each one has been lined with the other items on the page.