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You don’t need to be a seasoned data scientist or have a degree in graphic design in order to create incredible data visualisations.

It has become a lot simpler to mine your data and interpret your insights in an engaging, attractive, and most importantly easy to understand way.

This is a list of various different free and premium tools and platforms available which will allow you to communicate data in a variety of different formats, from interactive charts, to infographics, to maps, to word clouds.

Not all will be suitable for your particular data set or your audience, but its certainly worth experimenting with a few to seek out the most relevant. 

Hopefully you’ll not only learn some new skills and find some new creative tools, but also learn something about your own data.

Infogr.am

At Infogr.am you can create interactive, embeddable infographics using more than 30 charts and six themes.

Fusion Tables

Google’s Fusion Tables is a data management app that allows you to produce detailed charts, graphs or maps fairly quickly. You can also make them collaborative and use public or your own uploaded data. The Guardian uses this tool if you need an extra recommendation.

Piktochart

Piktochart has loads of great free and premium templates for infographics, reports, banners and presentations. They’re an attractive and easy to use bunch, in fact we’ve used this tool ourselves.

dygraphs

dygraphs is an open source JavaScript charting library which allows you to explore and interpret large data sets in a highly customisable way.

Timeline

Created by Simile, Timeline allows you create, simple interactive timelines, which you can scroll or drag horizontally.

Leaflet

Leaflet is an open source Javascript library which allows you to create mobile friendly interactive maps.

D3.JS

D3.JS is a JavaScript library for manipulating documents based on data using HTML, SVG, and CSS.

Tagxedo

Tagxedo is a simple to use word cloud generator. Words are individually sized appropriately to highlight the frequencies of occurrence within any body of text.

Easel.ly

Easel.ly is a very simple to use infographic creator with hundreds of templates, or you can just start from a blank slate if you prefer.

Creately

Creately allows real-time diagram collaboration, using more than 50 types of diagrams with thousands of examples and shape libraries available.

Sisense

Sisense allows you to join data from various sources, uncover insights using rich data visualisations and share.

Nuvi

Nuvi is a premium social media visualisation platform that allows you to create real-time visualisations, monitor topics or keywords and build custom reports. 

Bime 

Bime is a premium data and dashboard cloud platform with an eye on stylish cross-device design.

Color Brewer

Color Brewer developed by Penn State, is a tool for choosing map colours to ensure distinguishability between specific areas. 

iCharts

iCharts is a cloud-based visual analytics platform, its charts are easily embeddable, shareable and quick to rustle up.

Better World Flux

Using Better World Flux can track the progress of countries using various social, economic and political indicators, and find important trends and patterns.

Visual.ly

Visual.ly has a “push-button approach to infographics and data visualization that doesn’t require a degree in statistics or a stint in art school.”

For more on data visualisation from the blog, check out 10 data-visualisations that prove information is beautiful

Christopher Ratcliff

Published 25 February, 2015 by Christopher Ratcliff

Christopher Ratcliff is the editor of Methods Unsound. He was the Deputy Editor of Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via Google+ and LinkedIn

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Comments (8)

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Alex Kupriienko

Alex Kupriienko, PR strategist at Portmone.com

Thank you very much for this material!

over 1 year ago

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John Samson, CEO at Pull Media

Thanks a lot.
Although it's not purely for data, we use and would add https://www.canva.com/ to the list - example of use here http://betoclock.com/famous-poker-player-quotes/ - maybe something for a broader topic on "content visualization tools"...

over 1 year ago

Richard Michie

Richard Michie, Digital Marketing Director at Euro Energy Services

That's very useful, I'm trying to bring stats to life at the moment and lots of tools I've found just don't cut it. I've used Inforgram a little but leave feeling a bit underwhelmed. I'll take a look over the rest of the list. At first site Pictochart looks cool.

over 1 year ago

Will Rogers

Will Rogers, Head of Digital Marketing at VocaLink

Very handy - nice to have alternatives to bribing my digital design team with cake, especially for internal updates.

over 1 year ago

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Rebecca Fryer, Business Development at Glued Films

What a great way to make statistics look visually appealing. Ill be using this again!

over 1 year ago

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Christoph Holz, CEO at Visalyze GmbH

Cool listing of data visualisation tools. We also provide a tool in the area of visual data discovery primarily visualising big data like Facebook, Twitter and Bitcoin. I invite you to check out our website at www.visalyze.com and try our free version free.visalyze.com of the SaaS.

over 1 year ago

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Ziga Milek, Marketing at Zebra BI

That's a wide variety of visualization tools you got there. That said, I'd add another one to the list. :) If you have to visualize financial and business data, take a look at Zebra BI https://zebra.bi/

over 1 year ago

aga marchewka

aga marchewka, International Publisher at GirlsTakeLyon

I love the list, pretty comprehensive. I know you are not exactly talking about photos but about tools to play with images and photos. But I thought that good value for all of us is pixabay.com. They have over 490 000 free images and photos to use. It is very easy to use and the photos are very good quality. You can check here: http://pixabay.com/en/editors_choice/ And yes, there is not trick, everything is for free to use on your website, social media etc

11 months ago

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