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Tips to improve Power BI report appeal

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Introduction

This time we will provide some tips to improve the Power BI report appeal. Let’s face it. Software engineers are not usually good to create nice reports. We can deal with complex code, AI, but usually (there are always some exceptions to the rule) we cannot create a decent report with good colors and a better look and feel.

In this article, we will modify the following Power BI report.

Chart used

We will convert the previous report into something like this:

report with tips applied

Requirements to improve Power BI report appealing

First, we need an ugly report already created.

Secondly, we will use PowerPoint. I am using PowerPoint 2019, but older versions may work as well.

Tips to improve Power BI report appeal - Change the theme

First, you need to change the theme. Go to View and select Theme gallery.

improve Power BI report appealing - View Themes

Secondly, select your favorite Theme. In this example, we will select the first one.

improve Power BI report appeal - themes gallery

Thirdly, download the JSON file related.

json file theme

Also, open your JSON file. You will notice that the JSON file includes the colors for the background, foreground, data, etc. The colors use hexadecimal values. You can manually change the colors in the JSON file directly.

improve Power BI report appeal - json code

In addition, if you do not know anything about hexadecimal color codes, you can use this link:

https://htmlcolorcodes.com/

You can select a color and check the hexadecimal codes for the colors selected and use those numbers in the JSON file.

hex colors

Also, once the JSON file is saved, select the Browse for theme option and select your JSON file downloaded from the gallery.

improve Power BI report appeal - Browse for themes

Once applied, you should have something like this:

improve Power BI report appeal - theme applied

Finally, you can modify the background color using Visualization, Canvas Background, and selecting a color.

Change background

Tips to improve Power BI report appeal – Using a background created in PowerPoint

Basically, you could create a background image with Photoshop or another image editor. Why should you use PowerPoint?

Well, if you have a good knowledge of image editors, it is not a bad idea to use them. Snagit editor, Photoshop, Krita, or any other tool can help you to create images for the background. However, if you do not feel comfortable with image editors, PowerPoint can easily export the slide presentation into an image png (Portable Graphic Format) file.

First, open PowerPoint and you will see several Themes, and presentations. You can use all of them as backgrounds.

improve Power BI report appeal - Start Power Point

Secondly, I will use the droplet design presentation.

Power Point themes

Thirdly, delete the text boxes from the presentation because we do not need them.

Remove text

Also, you can add images to the background. In this example, you can add for example the 3D models using the Insert, 3D models option, and Stock 3D Models option.

3d models

Tips to improve Power BI report appeal – Using rectangles in PowerPoint

Drawing some rectangles helps to draw some borders for the Power BI visuals.

First, go to Insert, Shapes, and select a rectangle.

improve Power BI report appeal - Add rectangles

Secondly, in Drawing options when you select the rectangle, select Shape format and provide a shape to the rectangle.

Shape to rectangles

Thirdly, we will create 7 rectangles for the slicers, cards, and charts as well. Check the size for the visuals in Power BI to have rectangles of similar size.

Draw rectangles in Power Point

Also, save the PowerPoint as type png.

Save as png

In addition, a message asking which slides to export will be displayed. Select Just this One.

Select slide to export

Using Rectangles in PowerPoint

Once the image is created, we can apply it in Power BI. First, go to Power BI and select the background. Secondly, go to visualization and select the Format your report page icon. Also, go to Canvas Background and press the browse button, and select the png file previously created.

Format report

The picture may look like this.

background changed

Also, modify and move the controls to fit in the image. Modify the font size and position of the visuals.

Adjust font size and position

Finally, your control will look like this.

Final report

Conclusion

To conclude, we can say that it is a great idea to apply themes from the gallery and have a theme in the company to standardize the reports.

Also, you could hire a graphic designer to help you with a nice background, but it is a great idea to have a flat background and modify it with PowerPoint to add some rectangles for the Power BI visuals.

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