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Cycle Plot for Power BI

Every month Microsoft publishes a summary of all the new features in Power BI within their Power BI Blog. In the May 2021 post we got the opportunity to introduce our Cycle Plot for Power BI to the Power BI community. Here you have our contribution to the Power BI Blog.

Time series are great to clarify changes over time in measures. The line chart is the favourite chart for this data. But displaying results with a normal line chart can also hide important patterns. This happens when the measure contains seasonality. The Cycle Plot is a special line chart developed to show seasonal time series. It helps you to visualise trends within seasonal data. It has the strengths of common line charts. But without hiding cyclical patterns.

Cycle Plot example

Let’s explain with an example. Say we are looking at items sold over a number of weeks. We expect to sell more on weekdays compared to the weekend. A line chart will show low values during the weekend and higher values during the week. However, it’s hard to tell if sales on Mondays are increasing or decreasing over the weeks. With the Cycle Plot a subplot can be created for each day. You can show the change in sales over time for that day. All the subplots together still show the seasonal pattern as well, as seen in the image above.

Don’t hesitate and try the Cycle Plot now on your own data by downloading it from the AppSource. All features are available for free to evaluate this visual within Power BI Desktop.