Search
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu

Color your data

Make your data beautiful.

This article shows you how to color the data in your reports. To learn how to style the overall layout and appearance of the report itself, see Style reports.

In this article:

Coloring in a nutshell

You can choose how to color the data in your reports:

  • Color by the dimension value. E.g., "France" is always represented in blue. This is the default behavior for new reports.
  • Color by the order of the dimension data. E.g., the first series is always blue.
  • Use shades of a single color (e.g. in pie charts).
  • Color metrics and geo map regions.

You can change the default behavior for all charts:

  1. Edit the report
  2. Click anywhere on the report margin to display the Layout and Theme panel
  3. Select the THEME tab
  4. Under the Color by options, select the new default behavior.

The colors used in your report are stored in a theme:

  • You can use a default color theme or create a custom theme
  • The current theme colors are used when you color dimensions by the order of the data, or when coloring metrics
  • Overriding a color in the current theme updates the Custom theme
  • The theme also provides the starting point for the dimension value color map, which is used when you color by dimension value

The rest of this article explains how all this works.

Data color techniques

You can color the dimension data in your reports using one of three techniques:

Color by dimension values

The Dimension values option colors each dimension value in your charts with specific colors. Coloring by dimension values ensures that your data uses color consistently, regardless of the position of that data in the chart. This option uses a dimension value color map to associate colors with dimension values.

For example, let's say you want France to always be dark blue in your charts. Using the color by dimension value option, you can assign that color to the value "France." Every chart that includes "France" as a value will use that color for that data series.

Data Studio automatically assigns colors to your dimension values, but you can also choose your own colors.

Example

In the charts below, the colors used for each dimension stay constant, even if their position in the chart changes: France is always blue, Germany is always red, India is always green

Example of coloring by dimension value.

Example of coloring by dimension value.

Learn how to manage dimension color values.

Color by series order

The Series order option colors the data according to its position in the chart. This option emphasizes the ranking of the data over the identity of the data. This option uses the current theme to color the data.

For example, let's say you want the highest valued dimension to always appear in green. Using the color by series order option, you can assign that color to the first color swatch in the current theme.

Example

These charts use the color by series order (called slice order in the Pie Chart properties panel) option. Here, dark blue represents the highest valued dimension, rather than a specific country.

Example of coloring by series order

Example of coloring by series order.

Single color

Pie charts offer an explicit single color option. Use this to display the pie slices in shades of the selected color, as shown in the example below.

Example of coloring with a single color.

Example of coloring with a single color.

Color metrics

Metrics get their default colors from the current report theme. You can use custom colors for metrics in selected charts by editing the STYLE properties for those charts. See customize theme-based chart colors below.

The dimension value color map

The dimension value color map is a table of the dimension values that appear in your report, with an associated color for each value. Charts that use the color by dimension values option get their colors from this map. The dimension value color map is created automatically from the data in your report. You can also edit the map directly to add values and change colors.

How the dimension value color map works

For editors:

Whenever you add or edit a chart, any new dimension values displayed by that chart are added to the map. The colors in the map come from the report-level color theme currently in effect when the values are added.

Example

In a new blank report, the dimension value color map is empty. If you add a pie chart with the Country dimension, and limit it to 3 slices, the dimension value color map now contains 3 values, one for each of the countries appearing in chart.

Example of the dimension value color map.

Example of the dimension value color map.

 

If you then edit the chart and increase the number of slices to 10, the new country values are added to the dimension value color map.

Next, you add a time series broken down by the Source dimension. The new dimension values are added to the map, so it now includes items like "google," "(direct)", "youtube.com," etc., along with colors for each value.

Example of the dimension value color map with more values.

Example of the dimension value color map with more values.

As you edit the report, only the dimension values actually displayed in the charts are added to the dimension value color map. Paginated charts, or charts that contain data only for certain date ranges, won't add to the map until those values are actually displayed.

The dimension value color map can contain a maximum of 1000 entries. If the map exceeds this limit, you'll be prompted restore the default colors. Currently, there is no way to selectively remove values from the map.

For viewers:

When someone views dimension values that haven't been added to the dimension value color map, Data Studio will select colors automatically. These colors might be different for different viewers, and won't be added to the map.

Manage dimension value colors

You can edit the dimension value color map in 3 ways:

  • From the chart properties panel, STYLE tab, under the Color by options, click EditManage dimension value colors.
  • From the Layout and Theme panel, THEME tab, under the Color by options, click Edit Manage dimension value colors.
  • From the Resource > Manage dimension value colors menu.

Add a new value to the map

To add an individual value to the dimension value color map:

  1. Edit the dimension value color map using one of the methods above
  2. Click Add a value
  3. Click the color swatch to select a new color, if desired
  4. Enter the new value
  5. Click CREATE VALUE.

Example of adding a new color/value pair.

Example of adding a new color/value pair.

Change the color of an existing value

To change a value's color:

  1. Edit the dimension value color map using one of the methods above
  2. Locate the value to change (use the Search box on the right if you have lots of values)
  3. Click the color swatch for that value
  4. Select the new color.
Restore default colors

To reset the dimension value color map:

  1. Edit the dimension value color map using one of the methods above
  2. In the bottom left corner, click RESTORE DEFAULT COLORS.

Example of restoring default colors.

Restore default colors example.

Restoring the dimension value color map will discard any values you've added manually. In addition, the new map will only contain values for the charts currently displayed on the report page. There's no way to undo this, so please proceed with caution.

Themes

Charts that use the color by series order option get their colors from the current theme. Themes also provide the starting colors for the dimension value color map.

There are 2 default color themes, "Simple," and "Simple Dark." The colors selected in these themes work well together aesthetically, and provide good contrast for vision impaired viewers. You can create a Custom theme by selecting your own colors.

The chart palette

The chart color palette

The chart palette.

The color swatches in the color palette correspond to the position of the data series in your charts. E.g., the first swatch colors the first data series, the second swatch colors the second data series, and so on.

Select a report theme

To select the theme for entire report:

  1. Edit the report. The Layout and Theme properties panel appears on the right
  2. Select the THEME tab
  3. Select the theme from the Theme drop-down menu.

Create a custom theme

Create a custom theme by changing the current theme colors:

  1. Edit the report
  2. Click anywhere on the report margin to display the Layout and Theme panel
  3. Select the THEME tab
  4. Scroll down to the Chart Palette section
  5. Click the chart palette to change the color for the selected position.

Your new custom theme appears in the theme drop-down menu.

Customize theme-based chart colors

You can override the report-level theme colors for a selected chart. Depending on the chart type, you can do this by selecting colors for each series, or by changing the overall chart color palette.

  1. Edit the report
  2. Select one or more charts
  3. In the properties panel on the right, select the STYLE tab
  4. Under Color by, select Series order (or Slice order for pie charts, Bar order for bar charts)
  5. Use the series color controls or chart palette to select new colors

Reset to report theme

To reset a chart to the report theme:

  1. Edit the report
  2. Select one or more charts
  3. In the properties panel on the right, select the STYLE tab
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the panel, then click Reset to report theme

If the report is set to use the color by dimension values option, clicking Reset to report theme will apply that option to the chart. Otherwise, the series order colors will apply.

Was this article helpful?
How can we improve it?
What's new in Data Studio

Learn about new features and recent changes.