Unlike bar or column charts, waterfall charts display positive and negative values side by side. This layout means waterfall charts enable you to easily compare positive and negative changes at a glance.
Note that if a Waterfall chart uses percentage values, and the end total is a partial sum of the line items preceding it, no total is displayed in the Waterfall chart.
What can I use waterfall charts for?
A common use of waterfall charts is visualizing profit and loss statements, which typically comprise a series of increments and decrements, divided into subcategories.
Waterfall charts have unique configuration options available under the Axis and Data headings. These options include:
- the Auto axis toggle that adjusts the minimum value of the y-axis. Use this option when you need to compare intermediate values that are small, relative to the initial and the final values of your chart.
- the Suppress zeros toggle that removes any data items with a value of 0. This streamlines your waterfall charts, making positive and negative data items more prominent.
- the First item as total toggle that changes the first column on your chart to be the same color as a total. If the starting data item on your waterfall chart is a total, this can be useful to aid understanding.
Waterfall charts only use the first column of a view and display the view's rows as columns on the chart. To ensure synchronization with your page when building the view for your chart, you can:
- pivot list items to rows and line items to columns.
- pivot line items to rows with time as a context selector.
These methods enable you to change how data is displayed on a waterfall chart by changing the time context selector.
Use a waterfall chart to answer:
- What happened to the value of X over the past year and why?
- What are the different values that resulted in Y?
- Which of these factors had the largest impact on Z?
A waterfall chart may not be the best option when:
- you need a card to fit into a small space, as waterfall charts require a lot of horizontal space on a board.
- multiple data items need to be compared simultaneously, as waterfall charts can only display the first column of data in a view.
Alternative chart types
Use a different type of chart if:
- you're comparing multiple data series over multiple time periods (use a stacked bar or column chart).
- you want to identify trends for a group of values (use a line chart).
To learn about other types of chart, see Chart types in detail on the Charts page.