How to Build a Chart

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Estimated reading time: 5 min

Follow these easy steps to create your own chart:

Step 0. Open the Chart designer

There are several ways to get to the charts designer:

  1. From the Dashboards page, click the plus button in the bottom right corner. Select Blank. From the Dashboard editor, choose INSERT button and click Chart.
  2. From the Saved charts page, click the plus button in the bottom right corner.
  3. From the Presentations page, click the plus button in the bottom right corner. From the Presentation editor, choose INSERT button and click Chart (please note that Presentations are available starting from the Small Business plan).

NOTE: Dashboards are groups of charts, text and media content. To read more about creating dashboards, go hereTo read more about creating presentations, go here

You can also click any dataset or integration and choose Create dashboard, Create saved chart or Create presentation options – in this case, you’ll miss the step of choosing the source for your chart.

Step 1. Choose a data source

Next, you will have to select where you data is coming from.

You can choose one of the previously created data sources from the Library or Data sources page. Click an integration to see existing datasets or create new ones. For some SaaS integrations, you’ll also see the list of available chart templates. File datasets are stored in the Files folder.

To create a new data source, click CREATE NEW at the top right corner of the Choose a data source dialog window.

  • Upload a file – upload *.csv, *.xlsx and *.xls files from your hard drive.
  • File by URL – create a dataset from the source available by URL.
  • Slemma enables to connect a bunch of different services (databases, cloud storage, сloud services). If you didn’t create any integration earlier, you can do it right from this page and then create a new dataset on this integration. 

Step 2. Choose a chart type

Once you chose the data source, you’ll see the Choose a chart type dialog window. Be sure to explore all the different chart types to choose the one that best displays the data clearly.

Chart types

Step 3. Working with measures and dimensions (Layout page)

Then, add a dimension for the Category axis. To understand what is going on, you should first understand the difference between measures and dimensions.

MEASURES are numbers, or quantitative values. For example, #of orders, #of users, Profit, Price, #of days and so on. Measures are marked with ‘#’ symbol.

DIMENSIONS are categories by which you group your measures, for example country, product category or employee. Dimensions are marked with Abc(string icon), clock icon(clock icon) or map point(geo icon) icon.

Decide which measure you wish to focus on for the chart, and then select the appropriate aggregation type for your measure (for example, sums for total sales or averages for a percentage).

Your chart will appear on the screen.

NOTEFor some connectors, you may have to click APPLY button or enable Auto mode to display the chart. 


The following steps are optional. You can add filters, sorting, or customize the chart (to do this, select the appropriate step from the top ribbon).

If the chart is ready, just click DONE at the top right corner of the Chart editor. The chart will be added to a dashboard/saved charts/presentation (depending on the way you start the chart creation). You can always get back to chart editing by selecting the chart and clicking Edit chart from the gear wheel menu.

Step 4. Add filters (optional)

Filters are an important feature of Slemma that enables you to choose information you don’t want to include in your data analysis, and that should not be displayed on the graph.

To add a filter to a chart, from the Filters page of the Chart editor, select a measure or a dimension. There are 3 types of filters in Slemma:

Let’s go through each of them.

Filter by Measure

When applying a measure to filter field, Slemma automatically generates the following dialogue:

By default, filter use aggregated values which are displayed on the chart. To use raw values from the source, enable the Apply filter to raw data option.

Under the Show values which are menu the following filter types available:

  • greater than – matches rows with the column value greater than your input
  • greater than or equal – matches rows with the column value greater than or equal to your input
  • less than – matches rows with the column value less than your input
  • less than or equal – matches rows with the column value less than or equal to your input
  • equal – matches rows where the filter column equals your input
  • not equal – matches rows where the filter column not equals your input
  • between – matches rows with the column value less or equal than your input ‘to’ but greater or equal than your input ‘from’
  • not between

Filter by Dimensions

When you add a dimension to filters, Slemma automatically generates the following dialogue:

To select which elements should be included and which shouldn’t, stay on the Select tab. Check all the elements you need. And remember the search tool is there to help you.

To select the elements that match an expression (string), click the Wildcard tab. You can include or exclude elements that contains/starts/ends or exactly match an expression. For example, you can select all URLs that contain /share/.

To select top/bottom N elements from your dimension, choose the Top tab. Then choose Top or Bottom from the pane, how many elements to select, measure by which the query will be calculated and how the measure should be aggregated. You can also create an element ‘Others’, which will contain all elements that will not be included in the top/bottom. Please note that the “Others” element won’t be included into sorting and will be always displayed at the end of the chart (for pie charts – at the top left).

Filter by Time and Date

Select a date dimension in the Filter pane and specify the period.

Don’t forget to click APPLY at the top right corner of the pane when the filter is ready.

Since time and date are also dimensions, you can switch to the List view, specify the level and choose separate years/months/days in the filter.

NOTE: You can’t add more than 3 date filters to one chart.

Step 5. Add sorting

Slemma offers the ability to sort and order data in various ways. This is when you have a table and you would like the, for example, top sales to be in the top rows. Also, you can use this to order a bar chart so that the longest bars are at the top and the shortest ones are at the bottom.

To sort / order data, go to the Sort page of the Chart designer and select one of the dimensions which is added to a chart.

Slemma generates the following dialogue:

  • Data source order – the default sorting of elements of selected dimension. They appear as they come from the dataset.
  • Alphabetic – you can order elements by the alphabet ascending (from A to Z) or descending (from Z to A).
  • Measure – sort elements ascending or descending by measure.
  • Manual – you can move elements up and down to let them go as you want.
Don’t forget to click APPLY at the top right corner of the Sort pane to add sorting to a chart.

Step 6. Customize your chart

Slemma allows you incredible freedom in customization options. Select colors, tooltip style or enable drilling from the Chart tab of the Format page. Change the title, labels style or add trendline from the Elements tab. Save the chart style as a template for future use on the Style tab. 

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