best javascript data visualization libraries
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What’s the best thing to do with a spreadsheet full of numbers? No, we’re not going to trash it today – we’ll supercharge it. You can use visuals to turn those drab figures into living, breathing charts, maps, and graphics. The best JavaScript data visualization libraries let you generate user-friendly resources from your data. πŸ’Ύ

In this post, we’ll look at πŸ”Ž some of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries you can find in 2023. But first, let’s dig into what this sort of library can do for your data.

What a JavaScript data visualization library is (and what it helps you do)

In a nutshell, a JavaScript data visualization library lets you create interactive and dynamic visual representations of data using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. These libraries give you functions, components, and templates – all pre-built – that you’ll use to create a wide range of charts, graphs, maps, and other visualizations.

A graph visualization on the front end of a website.

The results let you display complex data in an easy-to-understand manner that also offers visual appeal. As such, you can communicate insights and patterns in the data you feed your charts effortlessly.

Even better, you can customize the look and feel of the charts and graphs you generate. There will often be a choice of chart types, too, as well as interactive functionality, such as tooltips.

Overall, the best JavaScript data visualization libraries provide 🧰 powerful tools to explore and communicate data in a dynamic and interactive way. The insights will let you discover new viewpoints on your data, make quicker decisions, and communicate the findings better to those who matter.

Ten of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries in 2023 ⭐

For the rest of this article, we’ll look at a list of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries you can find.

Of course, each library has its own strengths and weaknesses. You’ll also likely use each one in different contexts, depending on the type of data you want to visualize. It’s a good idea to bear this in mind as we look at the list. The libraries we showcase aren’t in any order, and we suspect you’ll have more than a singular favorite by the end of the post.

1. D3.js

First up, we have the Data-Driven Documents (D3) library. D3.js is powerful and sees a lot of use with developers to create complex and interactive data visualizations. You can build using HTML, CSS, SVG, and much more.

D3.js is one of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries.

D3.js offers a lot of functionality under the hood. This includes data manipulation, layout generation, and general data visualization. You could turn to D3.js to create custom visualizations that require advanced data manipulation or visual effects. However, the library has a steep learning curve for some, so it may not be ideal for a first-time user.

2. Chart.js

Next on our list of best JavaScript visualization libraries is Chart.js. This is a simple and easy-to-use solution that gives you the tools to create responsive and customizable charts and graphs using HTML5.

The Chart.js library.

As per its name, Chart.js provides a variety of chart types, including line, bar, pie, doughnut, and radar charts. The library is solid if you need to create simple visualizations with a limited amount of data.

We also like the intuitive application programming interface (API) and excellent documentation. As such, we recommend Chart.js for both beginners and developers who need to create simple visualizations fast.

3. Plotly.js

If you’re after a modern and flexible JavaScript library, Plotly.js could be ideal. It lets you create interactive charts, plots, and maps using a variety of chart types. This includes scatter plots, line charts, and bubble charts.

Plotly.js is among the best JavaScript data visualization libraries.

Plotly.js also offers a powerful API to let you create custom visualizations with localized functionality such as hover text, zooming, and panning. If your visualizations need a high degree of interactivity, Plotly.js can help you achieve it. It’s also ideal if you need to integrate its functionality with other web applications, too.

4. Highcharts

Highcharts is a versatile and feature-rich JavaScript data visualization library that gives you a range of customizable chart types. This is another solution if you want to create complex visualizations and implement a glut of customization options.

The Highcharts library.

As with other libraries, you’ll get the ability to zoom and pan, and also implement drill-downs. However, Highcharts is a premium library, with a license that starts from $160 per year. Even so, it provides excellent documentation, quality support, and a large user community.

5. Google Charts

No list of best JavaScript data visualization libraries wouldn’t be complete without Google Charts. It’s free and familiar to use thanks to its cookie-cutter interface.

The Google Charts library is one of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries and it's free.

Google Charts is at its best when you use it to create simple visualizations fast, as its simple API and intuitive documentation are both rich. As you’d expect, you also get excellent integration with other Google products, such as Google Sheets and Google Analytics. This will give you ways to create deep and comprehensive insights, along with slick presentation.

6. Vega-Lite

For the most complex of the best JavaScript visualization libraries, Vega-Lite will be near the top. It’s super-powerful and gives you the tools to create rich and interactive visualizations using concise and expressive syntax.

The Vega-Lite library.

Vega-Lite also supports data transformations, such as filtering, sorting, and aggregation, along with visual transformations (such as stacking). We also like how you can use Vega-Lite in conjunction with D3.js, which gives you a way to leverage the power of both libraries.

7. amCharts

Next, amCharts is a comprehensive JavaScript visualization library that lets you create charts and graphs such as heatmaps, treemaps, and Gantt charts. In fact, there’s much more you can do with amCharts that we don’t have the room to cover here.

The amCharts library.

We like the efficiency of amCharts, too, as it’s tiny and processes data fast. However, this is another premium tool with a somewhat complex licensing model. Prices start from $180 and rise rapidly.

8. Chartist.js

Chartist.js is a lightweight and responsive library that lets you create simple and clean charts and graphs. It’s one of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries for many reasons, but we love its minimalist yet bold default graphical approach.

The Chartist.js library.

The library provides a variety of chart types, and it will be fantastic if you need to create simple visualizations that work well on mobile devices. On the whole, Chartist.js is a great tool for creating lightweight and responsive visualizations thanks to its small size and excellent performance.

9. FusionCharts

Our penultimate library is FusionCharts. It’s a comprehensive JavaScript library that provides gorgeous line, bar, and area charts, among others.

The FusionCharts library.

In fact, you get hundreds of interactive chart types and maps. With each one you could render a theoretical millions of points of data. As such, it’s stellar for “Big Data” applications and dashboards.

However, to net this powerful functionality, you’ll need to pay. FusionCharts starts from $439 per year, and despite the quality under the hood, this could be prohibitive.

10. Apache ECharts

The final entry on our list of best JavaScript data visualization libraries is Apache ECharts. It’s powerful and flexible, with plenty of available chart and map types.

The Apache ECharts library showing a graph and associated JavaScript data.

One of its standout features is the powerful API. This lets you create custom visualizations based on your data sets, and include animation and interactivity to boot. We also think the elegant visual design is one of the best on the market, especially for an open-source solution.

With its excellent documentation and active community, we think ECharts is a great tool for data visualization experts and developers. It’s a go-to option for many situations, especially where you need to include accessible visualizations.

How to use JavaScript data visualization libraries with WordPress

If you want to display data visualization resources on your WordPress website, the Visualizer plugin gives you an easier way to work with many of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries.

Instead of needing to use your own code, you can add your data to Visualizer and let it do the work for you.

With the Visualizer plugin, you can create 15+ interactive chart types using your choice of different data visualization libraries including Chart.js, GoogleCharts, and DataTable.

To supply the data for your charts, you can use a variety of sources including CSVs (upload one or sync with a hosted CSV file), databases, external APIs, and more.

Visualizer plugin.

Try the best JavaScript data visualization libraries πŸš€

The facts don’t lie, but those who matter can ignore them if those facts don’t stand out. Appearances count, and the data you get from your analytics should look its best. This is because visual data can educate and convince those in power that they need to take action to do what’s best for business.

The best JavaScript data visualization libraries let you do this with a minimum of fuss. However, you’ll likely turn to a number of different libraries to achieve your goals. For instance, Chartist.js is ideal to share graphs over mobile device. In contrast, FusionCharts can handle millions of data points and render them in a snap. All of the solutions on this list will come in handy at different times.

πŸ‘‰ If you want to display visualizations on WordPress, you can use the Visualizer plugin to access an easier way to work with some of these data visualization libraries.

Do you have a question about any of the best JavaScript data visualization libraries on this list? Ask away in the comments section below!

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