Dashboard of pet spending by Americans

Pet Spending Dashboard

Americans spent over $62B on their pets in 2016, according to data from the American Pet Products Association.  Spending on pets has grown at a 6% annual rate over the last 15 years.  Dogs and cats are by far the most popular pets.  They are in 54 million and 43 million households, respectively.  Food and veterinary care are the two biggest spending categories.   Dog owners spent, on average, $1,641 on their pets last year, outspending cat owners by over $500.  The dashboard below summarizes the key data:Pet Spending Dashboard chart only


To make a readable multi-chart dashboard I did the following:

  • minimized the data in each chart with no one chart having more than 8 segments
  • reduced the number of chart features, eliminating axes and borders where possible
  • used a common color theme across all the charts
  • kept almost all my labels at a legible 9 point font
  • aligned the charts and spread them evenly over the slide
  • aligned elements within the fonts like axes and titles

My approach to building a dashboard is to start with a four chart slide under the "Insert Multiple Charts" button on the Mekko Graphics ribbon.  I then made the chart in the upper left and set its margins to work with the data.  I then copied this chart to use as a basis for the chart in the upper right.  This kept my margins aligned across the two charts.  I followed a similar procedure for the bottom charts.  I started with the lower right chart, resized it to fit three across.  I then copied it to create the lower middle Marimekko chart and used a copy of this chart to make the lower right chart.

Here is the chart in SlideShare to download and edit using Mekko Graphics: