Guide Users Through Your Data Dashboards
Creating an intuitive user experience is a hugely important aspect of web design, and there is no reason that the same principles shouldn’t be applied to your data dashboards. The easier your reports are to navigate, the more time can be spent on the important stuff: interpreting and analysing the data within. In Google Data Studio, our favourite data visualisation tool, there are a few small additions you can make to your dashboard that can have big impact on usability.
Navigation Buttons in Data Studio
Did you know that you can add buttons to your dashboard in Data Studio to help navigation throughout your report? This isn’t necessarily a built-in feature that’s touted by Google, but the tools to do so are already available to you. We’ll take you through a quick step-by-step guide on how to add these navigation buttons.
The key to creating navigation buttons is using textbox widgets, the Hyperlink function, and the Dynamic Page Links. If you’re not familiar with how to Hyperlink text and images in Data Studio, we go into a more depth in our guide for Using Hyperlinks in Google Data Studio.
Dynamic Page Links
You can create a navigation link to anything using hyperlinks, but for these navigation buttons we’re going to focus on the options available in Dynamic Page Links. These dynamic links are automatically updated depending on the page you’re currently on, so you don’t need to worry about getting different links for every page. The four options for these links are: First, Previous, Next, and Last. Highlight the text you’d like to hyperlink and use as a navigation button, and then click on Insert Link from the Text Properties menu. Here, you’ll be able to assign a Dynamic Page Link instead of a traditional hyperlink.
Simply select the corresponding page link, and change the Display text as desired: We’re a fan of the hugely creative >> and <<, but you can enter anything here. After this, click Apply, and your button is ready. You can update the style and design of the button as you wish using the widget menu on the right. You can also set the button you’ve created to appear Report-Level, so that it shows in the place on every page of your report, or copy and paste it across the desired pages and placements you’d like. Once again: you don’t need to worry about changing the URL each time, as the Dynamic Page Link does the work for you. From here, you can edit the style and design
The addition of navigational buttons to your dashboard might not seem like a huge innovation, but they can be particularly useful when sharing reports with users who might not be experienced with Google Data Studio, and ensures that the hard work you’ve put into every page your dashboard isn’t going to be missed. They might even encourage users to explore other areas of interactivity in Data Studio!
For more on Google Data Studio, you can follow us on Twitter at @GlowMetrics for regular updates and new features, and check out other articles on the GlowMetrics Blog for more extensive guides and step-by-step walkthroughs.
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