Thought Leadership

What Makes for a Good vs. Great Dashboard

Aishah Faiz

Associate Analytics Consultant

February 9, 2024
Featured image for “What Makes for a Good vs. Great Dashboard”

From Data to Decisions: The Anatomy of an Impactful Dashboard

In data-driven decision-making, dashboards are valuable tools that transform complex data into meaningful and actionable insights. However, not all dashboards are created equal. While a good dashboard may provide a snapshot of the data, a great dashboard tells a story that inspires users’ decisions and brings them closer to their goals. Three key differentiators exist between a good and a great dashboard: simplicity, organization, and interactivity.

1. Keep it Simple

Maintaining focus is a crucial trait that merely “good” dashboards often overlook. Too often, a dashboard contains unnecessary complexity and clutter that attempts to answer too many questions. This clutter ultimately confuses the user with more questions than answers — hindering rather than facilitating decision-making. A great dashboard prioritizes clarity and tells a story with data. It provides its users with answers to their most pressing questions at a glance. When presenting information, it considers users of all backgrounds and technical capabilities, including those without technical capabilities. It keeps the information relevant and aligned with the user’s specific goals.

2. Tell A Story

A great dashboard understands the significance of placing the most critical and high-level information at the forefront. Positioning key insights at the top of the dashboard ensures that users immediately grasp the essential takeaways of the dashboard. 

Consider a dashboard tailored for a company’s website analytics. It starts by spotlighting the highest level insights — total visitors, conversion rate, bounce rate, etc. — ensuring that users are met with the fundamental takeaways of the dashboard immediately. From there, it can be broken down into more detailed sections, such as top-performing pages, average time per page, and other important metrics.

While a good dashboard may contain all the necessary information, it may need more organization to deliver a pleasant user experience. It’s not just about handing the data over to the user; it’s about the thoughtful organization that transforms data into actionable insights. The flow of information should feel like a story unfolding. Like a captivating story unfolding logically, a great dashboard should guide users from a high-level overview at the top to more detailed insights as they scroll. By creating a seamless flow, the dashboard becomes more than just a repository of information; it becomes a tool for making informed decisions.

3. Empower the User

For a dashboard to be considered great, it needs to allow its users to engage with and tailor the information presented. “Good” dashboards sometimes lack this capability, limiting users to a static, one-size-fits-all scenario. 

For example, a dashboard’s value for a retail company diminishes when it cannot filter on a date range for trend analysis and seasonal patterns. Or if it can’t filter different store locations and customer segments to discern regional preferences to see how they can target their marketing efforts.

A great dashboard takes advantage of features such as filters and drill-down options, which allow users to customize the depth of their analysis. It will enable users to dive into specific aspects of the data and gain insights most relevant to their objectives. A great dashboard offers a user-friendly and dynamic experience that adapts to the unique needs of each user. 

For a great dashboard to differentiate itself, it should blend these three aspects to create a useful tool that displays data and inspires impactful decision-making.

Partnering with DAS42

At DAS42, your goals become our mission. Our personalized approach guarantees a comprehensive point of view tailored just for you. With an extensive track record of crafting actionable and intuitive dashboards, we empower organizations like yours to thrive. Partner with DAS42 to see what stories your data can tell.

DAS42 is a premier data and analytics consultancy with a modern point of view. We specialize in solving some of the most complex business challenges for the world’s most successful companies. As a Snowflake Elite Partner, DAS42 crafts customized strategies that create a single source of truth and enable enhanced and faster decision-making. DAS42 has a presence across the U.S. with primary offices in New York City and Denver. Connect with us at and stay updated on LinkedIn. Join us today on our journey to help you realize the possibilities of transforming your business through data and analytics.