How To Build An Interactive Dashboard Using Power BI


Building a dashboard in any BI tool has been a hassle due to different complexities. Traditional BI tools always demanded the deep integration of IT through the extract, transform, and load process. For a while, there has been a hustle in the BI area to build visualizations, dashboards, data cleaning, etc. This is where Power BI has simplified the area with its user-friendly interface along with mobility to build dashboards without actually doing any core coding. It has various advantages in building dashboards, data visualization, and creating reports.

Here we will see how we can build a simple dashboard in less than 10 minutes of time. Going on we will use Global Superstore.xls as the dataset to build a Sales Dashboard.


Global Superstore.xls (Available to download from Google).

Global Superstore

Step 1. Loading of Data in Power BI

After opening the Power BI app, it prompts you to select the data source. Here, we have chosen a dataset present in an Excel file, we need to choose Excel as a data source. After choosing the file from the folder containing the dataset, we can see the preview of all the tabs in Excel on the screen.

Power BI

By clicking on the first tab; i.e. Orders, we can preview the data.

The data

Here we need to take note of two options shown in the bottom right corner of the dialog box i.e. Load & Transform Data.

The load can be clicked on directly if we do not need any alteration in data or the headings of the columns are detected correctly.

It will take some time to load the data from a source.

Data from source

After the data is loaded, we are ready to build the dashboard in full swing.

Using Charts to see Sales figures

To see the sales figures we can pull two pie charts and segment them by the following,

  • Sales by Segment: Select Sales & Segment from the Fields section.
  • Sales by Region: Select Sales & Region from the Fields section.

Fields section

Now we can see the Profit made by region by pulling the pie chart and selecting Profit & Region.

 Profit & Region

Using a Clustered Chart to see a list of City wise Sales

Now if we want to Sales Distribution City we can see the same by pulling the Clustered Bar Chart and selecting sales & city.

Selecting sales & city

Since there are a lot of cities and we would like to view the top five cities having the highest sales, we can do the same by using the filters on the particular visualization by changing the parameters as:

  • Filter Type: Top N
  • Show Items: Entering the desired no. (To say Top 5 here)
  • By Value: Drag and drop the Sales tab into the space

Click on Apply Filter to see the changes.

 Apply Filter

As part of the next step, we can see both the Sales & Profit made by different Ship modes.

We can again select the Clustered Bar Chart to display both Sales & Profit by different Ship modes.

Ship modes

Using Cards to Show the Total Quantity, Sales Revenue and Profit

This is one of the simplest ways to show the total quantities or sales or profit made overall by pulling the Card from Visualizations.


Using Filters for all the charts

Insert a Slicer from the Visualizations and then drag a field, which you wish to see as a filter for the data.

Here we can filter the data w.r.t Category.


We can add second filter-to-filter data w.r.t customers. Hence, we can add a slicer, put a customer name field into it, and resize the chart to accommodate it in the dashboard.

The Dashboard


Our dashboard is quite ready for display. As a final step, we can insert a text box to name the dashboard.

Final Look at our Dashboard

Sales dashboard

Similar Articles