As a result, static PDFs and classic PowerPoint slides are sadly commonplace. But they aren’t the best way to present analytics data, and they certainly aren’t the most engaging.
In this article, we’ll take a look at how you can present analytics data in business reports for great results.
What is a business data report?
Put simply, a business report will track the overall performance of a company.
These reports are used to manage sales processes, assess marketing data and analyze what’s working well and what isn’t so that improvements can be made.
Reports help business directors make decisions for the good of the company. But for people to engage with what’s being reported, presentation is key. So long static PDFs and traditional PowerPoints! It’s time for a new kind of reporting.
Let’s take a look at some of the top data presentation tips.
1. Know your target audience
How do you present data analytics that people engage with? Firstly, you have to know your audience. Whether your audience includes management, co-workers, other departments or potential clients (to name a few), understanding who you’re presenting to can make all the difference.
Knowing your audience helps determine the kind of information you need to include, such as branding, images, colors and their level of understanding when it comes to data. Knowing your audience before you create your business report will ensure your presentation is focused and makes an impact.
2. Always be objective
The last thing you want to portray in your business report is passivity. Being objective will ensure your report states the facts rather than opinion, strengthening your report for that competitive edge.
Use concise, engaging and active language alongside bullet points and short paragraphs to keep your audience engaged. Be sure to record your insights accurately and use said insights to push your argument forward.
3. Utilize data visualization
Data visualization can be utilized to present data in a brand new and powerful way. When data is presented visually, it’s easier for people to engage with and understand. Use images and graphs to represent statistics and colors to make different aspects of the report stand out. If you’re not sure what data visualization is, just picture an infographic and work towards something like that. Data visualization is basically sharing statistics and report findings in a visual medium and it’s extremely effective.
4. Keep things simple
Business reports can often become 50-page data insights that are overly detailed and complicated. Often, all you need is a couple of bullet points, some data visualization thrown in and you’re good to go.
Don’t forget, you don’t have to create a piece of art for your report to make an impact. Focusing on your objectives and presenting data in the most accessible way will ensure your report has a positive impact on your audience.
5. Use text to describe data
Not everyone understands data, and that’s okay. Your report needs to be accessible for your whole audience, not just those who ‘get’ complicated data sets. So, a great practice is to describe the data shown in text form. Including explanatory text boxes in this way throughout your report will help your audience understand what the data is telling them so they can make more informed choices.
6. Report automation
If all of the above feels too daunting to achieve on your own, don’t worry, there are some fantastic report automation tools available that make the whole process really easy.
Google Analytics is a great tool that develops pre-configured reports for businesses. These reports can be customised to suit your requirements and really show off your hard work in the best light.
If you want people to read your business report, engage with the data and ask questions, presentation is key. The rise of report automation means you can compile your business data in one place and present it in a way that compels people to read.
7. Always proofread
Always, always proofread your business reports before sending them out. One of the main causes for reports that are badly received is due to simple errors. So, once you’ve written your report, leave it for a day or two and then come back with fresh eyes to proofread it.
Alternatively, have a third party look over it for any errors before sending it out or presenting it to clients. Thorough proofreading will ensure you put your best foot forward and show professionalism and attention to detail.
Creating a customized business report for the first time can feel like a daunting task and often, it can be hard to know what data to include. We hope that by following our advice, you can create a visually stunning and informative report that you’re proud to share with your audience.