Visualization Drill Downs

Visualization drill downs allow users to create hierarchies in visualizations so that users can click on a component of a chart and "drill in" to explore the data within that piece of the visualization. Visualization authors can now configure these hierarchies in the visualization authoring experience by adding several dimensions in an ordered hierarchy. Additionally, new controls have been added to the chart itself to drill back up through the data, to toggle between different dimensions in the hierarchy, and to reset the applied drill down filters to return to the original state of the visualization. These hierarchies are flexible, allowing users to drill down into any of the dimensions in the hierarchy in any order of their choosing. This is a powerful feature that allows users to easily explore data on the fly and gain rapid insights when consuming bar, column, and pie charts.

Configuring Drill Downs in a Visualization

Configuring drill downs in a visualization is simple. First, start by creating a visualization:


Keep in mind that the drill down feature is only available for the following types of visualizations:

  • Bar Chart
  • Column Chart
  • Pie Chart

Select the Dimension of your chart, which will serve as the top level of the drill down hierarchy. We're using a dataset of Building Permits in this example and have selected "Zip Code" as the Dimension:


Next, select the "Add Hierarchy" button to add lower levels of the hierarchy. The total number of hierarchy levels that can be configured is limited to five, including the Dimension (i.e., Dimension + 4 additional hierarchy levels). In this example, we'll add two additional levels—"Permit Class" and "Permit Type Description":


Notice that there are new controls in the top left of the chart now that we have added levels of hierarchy: 

  • Drill Up: This button takes you back up one level of the hierarchy. It is only enabled if you have drilled in to the chart data, as you cannot drill up past the top level of the hierarchy.
  • Hierarchy: This button displays each level of the hierarchy as it has been configured. You can also click on each level of the hierarchy, and it will set that as the x-axis without filtering the upper levels of the hierarchy unless you have already drilled in to the chart. If you have already drilled in to the chart, then switching to different levels of the hierarchy using this button will simply change the x-axis view while retaining the data filter configured by drilling into the chart.
  • Reset: This resets the chart to the original saved configuration.

Once you're finished configuring the visualization, save the draft. You can then test out the drill down behavior in the visualization authoring experience before publishing it:


In this example, selecting the "98103" Zip Code at the top level of the hierarchy drills in to all of the Permit Classes associated with that specific zip code. Then after selecting the "Single Family/Duplex" Permit Class value, it drills in to the third level of the hierarchy—"Permit Type Description"—revealing the total number of "Single Family/Duplex" permits for the "98103" Zip Code categorized by the Permit Type.

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